Long standing 20/20 member Ellen Kitson was invited to host a table at a prestigious event celebrating International Women’s day, in Greater Manchester, earlier this year. The ‘Afternoon Tea’ event was the brainchild of local MP for Wythenshawe and Sale East, Mike Kane, and the keynote speaker was Angel Rayner MP who talked about her childhood growing up in Manchester and her route to Westminster. The packed event, held at The Forum in Wythenshawe, was attended by over 150 women spanning the generations from school children to pensioners. There were even hopefuls queuing for standby places on the day.
Ellen founded KITSON Architecture Ltd in 2012 and has since grown a busy and successful, commercial architectural practice located in the heart of Altrincham. She was delighted to find herself sponsoring the event alongside Amazon, Vodafone, Manchester Airport Group and local solicitors Otten Penna. As a table host and facilitator Ellen was invited to chair round table discussions covering wide ranging subjects from Business, Skills & Employment to Health and Wellbeing and finally Community, Family & Relationships. She soon found there was a particular skill in enabling everybody around the table to find their voice while keeping the discussions on task.
Ellen’s table guests included a representative from The National Trust, school girls from Sale High, retired Wythenshawe residents, staff from the local housing group and from local charity BW3. Everybody was treated to a delicious afternoon tea served on vintage crockery and throughout the afternoon there were many different female speakers all sharing their inspirational stories. Amongst the laughter tears were shed as the room listened to some truly harrowing life stories and how the speakers had eventually found their path and what had been helped on their journey.
The whole event truly did justice to the IWD2017 theme #BeBoldForChange with the aim being to help forge a better working world – a more gender inclusive world. At the conclusion of the event pledges were made with a view to transferring the conclusions drawn, at the round table discussions, into practical action throughout 2017 and beyond.
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