Businesses and organisations from across the West Midlands joined together for an inspirational event in Birmingham which celebrated women and girls from the region and highlighted the importance of championing inclusivity all year round.

The Foundation joined forces with Investec Wealth & Investment (UK), which has an office in Birmingham, to host the ‘Inspiring Inclusion’ event at the Ikon Gallery, in Birmingham.

The event was led by Tina Costello, Chief Executive of Heart of England Community Foundation, and provided delegates with the opportunity to hear from high-profile individuals from across the West Midlands who are leading on social value and inspiring inclusion.

Rosie Ginday MBE, the founder and CEO of Miss Macaroon, was keynote speaker at the event and discussed her business – a community interest company that reinvests 100 per cent of its profits in supporting young people who need a helping hand to gain skills that can change their lives.

The business, established in 2011, was given a £1,000 grant by the Foundation in 2013 and has since grown to help countless young people to build their self-esteem, develop the skills they need to succeed and learn the art of making macaroons.

Event panellists included Nicola Toyer, who leads the charities team at Investec Wealth & Investment (UK); Alethea Fuller, Deputy Chief Executive for the West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner; Emma Joy Smith, a Partner at law firm Shakespeare Martineau; Marcia Lewinson, who has led Birmingham charity Women Acting in Today’s Society (WAITS) as Chief Executive for 25 years; and people motivator and strength psychology professional Dani Grieveson, who serves as an Advisor for the Financial Times.

They reflected on their careers and life experiences, what inspires them and what advice they would give their younger selves.

Tina Costello said:

“Inspiring Inclusion has been an opportunity to both champion women and girls and also to act as a reminder that continuous efforts are essential – that we need to bring gender inclusivity into our spaces, across all sectors, all year round.


“It was fantastic to welcome so many delegates from across the region to hear from our incredibly inspirational female speakers who are making a difference across the West Midlands, and have conversations about what more can be done to ignite change for women.


“I would like to thank everyone who attended the event, and to all of those who are uplifting women every day.”

Andrea Lobb, Investment Director at Investec Wealth & Investment (UK), who is based in the wealth manager’s Birmingham office, added:

“We were delighted to team up with Heart of England Community Foundation to celebrate the work of women across the West Midlands in delivering on the agenda of social value, social impact and inspiring inclusion.


“The event provided an excellent opportunity for businesses and organisations from across the region to hear from successful women from a range of industries and be inspired by their experiences.”