Riding For Victory: Coconut’s Cycle Challenge!

by | Mar 25, 2024 | Blogs

For the countless women struggling to re-enter the workplace, Smart Works is a lifeline! Through interview coaching, and the donation of an interview-ready outfit, women are being empowered to change their own lives. Which is why Coconut embarked on a fundraiser to support EWiF’s chosen charity.

It’s been a week since the Coconut team of five, donned their cycling shorts and embraced the community spirit of the outside (or inside a sweaty gym perhaps). With pedals spinning for dear life but spirits high, our team of amateur cyclists pedalled their way to their goal targets, all in support of Smart Works’ mission to empower women in the workplace.

The journey was nothing short of exhilarating. From early morning training sessions to late night gym fixes, the team shared a sense of purpose and determination. Each mile conquered was a step closer to driving positive change in the world. As we pushed through the pain, we were reminded of the obstacles many women face as they try to enter the business landscape. To date, Smart Works has empowered over 35,000 women, many of whom are at greatest risk of economic hardship and discrimination. In the last year:

  • 44% of clients had been unemployed for over a year,
  • 18% had applied for over 50 jobs,
  • And 10% had applied for over 100 jobs before coming to Smart Works.
  • In addition, 37% were single mothers,
  • 16% have a disability
  • 52% were from an ethnic minority.

It’s no easy feat! So, we pressed on, determined to make a difference. Each member of the Coconut team had a goal: to cycle 100 miles and raise at least £100. But of course, we managed to top that, collectively raising £612! We’d like to thank our very generous donors for the support given to help us reach our target! Every penny raised will support Smart Works’ vital work in providing unemployed women with the tools and resources they need to build confidence – especially after a career break, or negative workplace experience.

As one client says, “I remember very clearly how bleak life felt when I visited Smart Works three years ago, feeling hopeless, like no-one would give me a job because of my depression. The hours I spent with the women there – I’ll never forget them; and I hold Smart Works in my heart.”

The Cycle for Smart Works Fundraising Challenge was more than just a bike ride; Our team was joined by individuals from all walks of life, each with their own reason for taking part. Some, like Nathalie Buckley (a new mother!!) were looking for a new challenge, whilst our MD Paul Clegg, wasn’t sure if his 30 year old bike still worked! Together, we shared our progress and had a laugh along the way.

When she finished, Lyndsey Hancock, echoed the thoughts of most of us when she said, “101 miles cycled! I’m NEVER cycling again!” But despite the sore legs, it was all for a good cause.

Coconut, together with EWiF, are proud to support a charity helping women reach their full potential. The Cycle for Smart Works Fundraising Challenge has reminded us of the power of collective action, and we look forward to taking part in

more fundraising challenges in the future!