In Conversation with The Worcestershire Ambassadors

The Worcestershire Ambassadors

In Conversation with The Worcestershire Ambassadors

in association with You Do Better PR – PAYG PR

The Worcestershire Ambassadors are a group of individuals who share a common passion for Worcestershire and an enthusiasm to create a County to be proud of. In promoting Worcestershire, they work in partnership with various other groups in the County including The Chamber of Commerce, The Local Enterprise Partnership, University of Worcester and Worcestershire County Council.

In this month’s interview Ruby chats with Phil Dutton, the outgoing Chairman, and Kevin Powell, the new Chair of the group who, together, last year raised £135k for local charities. An amazing figure, comprising £100k for St Richard’s Hospice, £15k for Worcestershire Prostate Awareness Society, £5k for Derek Fradgely Memorial Fund and £15k for sponsorship of local events and organisations.

My alarm goes off …

Kevin – I try and remember whose turn it is to make the tea! And the answer depends on whether I press the snooze button or not!

Phil – My alarm goes off at 6am and I’ll spend 20 minutes listening to Radio 4, catching up with the news headlines before venturing out of bed … Carol (my wife) is always first out of bed!

How you met …

K – It must have been through the Worcestershire Ambassadors and our love of cricket?! What a great County we live in: where else do they allow people to start playing cricket in the city centre?

P – Yes! That was the Worcestershire County Cricket Club’s event that the

Worcestershire Ambassadors were the main sponsor for. The group provides 40 sponsorship opportunities per year to non-profit organisations at £500 per time; that’s £20k sponsorship a year to help promote Worcestershire as a great place to live, work and do business.

We probably met at an Ambassadors’ Ball many years ago. It’s through our events  that we raise money which in turn allows us to give back to local charities. However fund raising is not foremost in our minds. The most important thing about our events is that fun is the focus; this is why members support us. We’re keen to not always ask for money, which hopefully allows us to gain more buy-in, encouraging others to join us and continue to support their local organisations.

We also personally buy tables at Charitable Balls to support a wide range of events and causes (outside of the chosen charity of the year) like the prostate awareness football event where we hosted football legends Steve Bull and Steve Hodge as well as PSA testing, in fact the Worcestershire Ambassadors have encouraged 1000 men to be checked throughout this year so far.

K – Amazing! We share the same values and passion for these events which allow us to forge relationships with so many like-minded people; they’re not into the membership for themselves but more for what they can do for the County. I’ve made so many good friends in this way.

I’m responsible for …

K – I’m responsible for continuing the excellent work of the previous Chair. Phil’s changed an awful lot within the group since he took over as Chair and I aim to evolve that into the best run organisation in Worcestershire. We have an ever-growing list of members raising money through good causes. When we sadly lost Derek, Phil stepped in as the interim Chair and now it’s my honour to take over.  I’ve never taken on a role unless I can do it properly and I’m in a good position to do that now. We have a great Deputy in Julia Williams and Membership Executive in Tracey Hopkins. Phil has also agreed to stay on in a non-executive role as our Treasurer.

P – Yes, I stepped in as Chair (again) and am the only person to chair twice. I promised Derek that I would. He was a mentor to me in my business life and all that we’ve done this year was in his memory. The 50k walk in London raised £60k for St Richard’s Hospice which is where he spent his last days. A Very inspiring place.

I wanted to make sure the Chair‘s role was attainable. This year we have invested in technology improving our efficiency and professionalism. Previous Chairs have been from the private sector. I am delighted that Kevin will be our first Public Sector Chair.

What does that bring to the Worcestershire Ambassadors?

K – It means we represent all of our communities; a true cross-section of our County. This is what makes us different from other local organisations as we represent everyone. Our group is more about what you can do for your County, not what we can do for you. There is no other agenda.  We’re not rivals; we all come together to help do the same thing, as friends, with the County in common.

How do people find out about you?

P – We have a strong social media presence on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. We like to share our good work and our members’ stories.

K – You’ll see our logo as we sponsor many local events at which people often approach us and ask to join in.

P – Yes, sponsorship helps us to spread the word about the Worcestershire Ambassadors. We don’t look for thanks; it’s more to help promote Worcestershire.

K – Yes, we gain a lot of interest through word of mouth and our website, of course.

P – We’ve seen a huge increase in membership this year.  You can apply on line …

I got the job

K – I stood for election to be Vice Chair so, after Derek’s passing, my fellow Directors supported me, which is a great honour to gain from my peers. I’ve been on the Board since 2013 so I’m delighted to be the new Chair.

My typical day …

P – This is a voluntary role so when I was Chair I was often working too. I would touch base with the Members Executive daily and talk through priorities, check emails, chase monies, and understand where we were with key events. I’d often chat to a member a day about something or other and typically spent 2-3 hours per day making sure the Worcestershire Ambassadors was on track. Ultimately, dealing with volunteers is such a different way of engaging with people.

K – Yes, I do the same. There’s always someone or something to support, volunteers want to help so there’s a great passion amongst us. I have a great Board and we all know who’s responsible for what.

What’s on your to-do list?

K – This changes every day depending on what’s happening. We have a full calendar of events including Strictly Worcestershire which we’re delighted to take on this year, to help ensure it continues and all monies raised go to Worcestershire charities. We have recently secured 4 headline partners to be key sponsors and help us to develop our relationships moving forward.  These are: drp, Lowe’s Solicitors, Green Work Solutions and Andrew Grant.

P – We’re building a programme of events so we’re not reliant on just one to support our Work.  This allows the Worcestershire Ambassadors to be sustainable, so we can continue with our aims.

So how do people become partners?

What’s at the bottom of your to-do list?

K – I try and do the jobs I least want to do first. If it’s raining, that’s taking the dog for a walk. Or weeding the garden!

P – Nothing! I always do the jobs on my list. What I wanted to be when I grew up:

K – Spaceman!

P – Astronaut! Or in goal for Liverpool …

 

After work

K – That depends on the day of the week. I love cricket and am involved with Bromsgrove
and Worcester City Police Cricket Club, but it’s cycling for me tonight!


P – Most of my social life is linked to the Worcestershire Ambassadors, it’s rarely that I’m not doing at least 1 event a week representing them. I’m a huge Worcester Warriors fan and am there most weekends in the winter. I’m also on Chris Pennell’s Testimonial Committee and am a big Worcestershire County Cricket Club fan too. We’ve spent many happy days watching cricket together …

Members have the opportunity to meet regularly through attending a varied programme of events throughout the year.  If you’d like to know more about the Worcestershire Ambassadors please head to www.worcestershireambassadors.com 

Would you like to suggest a business-based interviewee or question for our monthy In conversation with … feature? If so, please head to www.youdobetter.co.uk or contact Ruby direct at: ruby@youdobetter.co.uk or 07891 777464. You Do Better | Pay as you go PR.

 

In Conversation with The Worcestershire Ambassadors 4
In Conversation with The Worcestershire Ambassadors 5

Media Partner You Do Better PR Agency delivers business news from around the County in the popular monthly interview entitled In conversation with.

You Do Better provide public relations and communications support to organisations around the Three Counties. Specialising in content and media management, Ruby Edwards and the team of associates at the Agency, provide pay-as-you-go PR. The team charge a reasonable hourly rate; starting at £35 per hour, as they prefer clients to stay with them because of their skills and experience rather than because they have to.

Together, they help you raise the profile of your business.

Targeting key business figures across the County, Ruby writes In conversation with featuring Worcestershire’s movers and shakers from a diverse range of organisations including sole traders, SMEs, charities and good causes, limited companies and PLCs.

If you’d like to know more about You Do Better head to www.youdobetter.co.uk or if you’re interested in being involved with the feature, contact Ruby direct on ruby@youdobetter.co.uk.

 

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About Author

Media Partner You Do Better PR Agency delivers business news from around the County in the popular monthly interview entitled In conversation with.

You Do Better provide public relations and communications support to organisations around the Three Counties. Specialising in content and media management, Ruby Edwards and the team of associates at the Agency, provide pay-as-you-go PR. The team charge a reasonable hourly rate; starting at £35 per hour, as they prefer clients to stay with them because of their skills and experience rather than because they have to.

Together, they help you raise the profile of your business.

Targeting key business figures across the County, Ruby writes In conversation with featuring Worcestershire’s movers and shakers from a diverse range of organisations including sole traders, SMEs, charities and good causes, limited companies and PLCs.

If you’d like to know more about You Do Better head to www.youdobetter.co.uk or if you’re interested in being involved with the feature, contact Ruby direct on ruby@youdobetter.co.uk.