Programme matches sixth formers and leading businesswomen

One hundred female students and 100 leading businesswomen came together at a reception in London this week to promote gender equality and female career progression.

The Women of the Future Ambassadors Programme connects award-winning women with sixth formers and provides mentors nad role models to inspire young women in their future careers.

The reception took place on 16 March at the Foreign & Commonwealth office and was attended by 100 past winners of both the Women of the Future and Asian Women of Achievement Awards, along with 100 students from over 30 schools.

Speakers shared their career journeys and top tips on how to navigate the business world, and the students were given the chance to take part in a networking session with all of the Ambassadors.

The Programme grew out of the Asian Women of Achievement Awards which were launched by Pinky Lilani in 1999 and was followed by the Women of the Future Forum in 2006.

The Ambassadors programme includes school visits by leading businesswomen and business visits by schools as well as mentoring initiatives. The aim is to introduce young women to career paths they may otherwise not have had contact with and to open their horizons.

Lloyds Bank has recently joined as a partner and the reception marked the launch of its role in the programme.

Fiona Cannon, Diversity & Inclusion Director, said: “We recognise the importance of having strong role models to aspire to, and their significance in providing inspiration to the young talented women in Britain today. Supporting the Women of the Future Ambassadors Programme is a key part of our commitment to nurturing talent. We want to support young women to prosper, by providing them with strong role models that give them the inspiration and confidence to reach their full potential.”

Throughout the year, Ambassadors will visit schools giving career talks and providing mentoring support to students. The students will have the chance to visit companies, including some of Lloyds’ offices, to get a deeper insight into the working world.

Pinky Lilani, founder of the Women of the Future Ambassadors Programme, said: “Just one conversation for these students can be life changing. Through your support we are able to enable events and programmes to ensure hundreds of students each year are gaining access to and being inspired by such women.

“We must inspire and engage the next generation of female talent, to ensure the issues of today are not the issues of tomorrow.”


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