Who knew I would be considered a champion of community?

Finding out I was a Community Business finalist in the upcoming Business Girls Network Inspire Awards (sponsored by the Maidenhead Advertiser), made me a little speechless. If I’m honest, it also left me feeling a bit like a fraud. How could my business and I be remotely community-related? Surely this was something that should be bestowed on businesses who quite obviously were community driven – cafe’s, indie shops and social groups.

Please, please, please do not misunderstand my feelings of shock and disbelief as being ungrateful, I really am not. I am thrilled to have been nominated by my peers and honored to stand beside three female powerhouses and such worthy finalists.
Francesca Cains – Image Consultant
Tabitha Beaven – Light Mind
Ranjana Nagi Shanti – Saints Cafe

So I started asking the question,
“Why was I nominated in this category, what did me and inspire my soul have to do with community?”

The more people I asked, the more I began to understand the why. It has been so heartwarming to read what people have to say about me and feel truly loved.

“Oh, lovely Karen! You really don’t know your own worth. You have a huge community spirit and are a huge champion and cheerleader for everyone in the community. I think you rock.”

“Karen you are such an amazing part of the Business Girls! You support, champion, inspire and wear your heart on your sleeve.”

“You are the heart of the community. I wouldn’t be where I am now without you supporting and guiding me and just being you!”

“You already know what I have to say as we had the pleasure of talking about it in person yesterday – I see you as a small business champion. The way you tirelessly promoted everyone’s products at the Artisan Fair at Saints with a massive smile on your face was all the evidence that’s needed. You bring people together, give people opportunity and you totally champion others. Hugely worthy finalist.”

So now I understand and it is all so much clearer for me. My initial thoughts about community being the local area you live are true, but oh so much more. Communities come in groups of all different shapes and forms. My tribe, my community is The Business Girls Network and one that I love to be at the very heart and soul of.

I am passionate about small business, indie business, and local business. I am genuinely interested in other businesses. I will support wherever and whenever I can and bang that indie business drum as loud as I can. I am proud to say I am collaborating with the gorgeous Clare from Clare Cogan Creating Calm and plans are underway to do something equally exciting with the fabulous Rebecca from Hugo’s Workshop.

If that makes me a Community Business Award finalist, thank you very, very much, I’ll take it with love and open arms!

I would truly be beyond excited to be the winner of this award. For me though and without any disrespect to the other gorgeous finalists, there is one stand out winner. A lady who has given me the opportunity to showcase my wares and build my brand awareness in popup shops. Given me the opportunity to bring to the community An Artisan Christmas and this month An Artisan Mothers Day. A lady who is a massive, massive supporter of local, small and indie business and a true champion of the small business owner. The lady behind Saints Cafe, Eat on The High Street, Gin in the Park and Popup Maidenhead. All of this she does with love and passion, now that is someone who truly embodies COMMUNITY!

If you haven’t yet voted, please do by clicking on the logo below – voting closes at midnight.