GUEST SPEAKER // Digital Mums

Were absolutely delighted to have Kathryn Dyer from Digital Mums coming to Mama Social on Friday 27th May.

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Digital Mums is a London based organisation designed to help women back into a career after having children.

Nikki Cochrane and Kathryn Tyler set up the social enterprise in 2013 after identifying that there was a gap in the market for “stay-at-home working mothers”.

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Digital Mums offers online courses to train mums to become social media managers. Freelance social media management is a great job for a mum as it’s rewarding and has great career prospects but also has the advantage of being flexible and can be done from home or on the go. Best of all this is a job that can be done remotely, from home. You can plan information to go out in advance on different types of social media. Then you can manage the channels while on the go, thus offering totally flexible working hours.

Mums are far more digitally savvy than the average person — they are twice as likely to own a smartphone and 80% spend time on social networking sites (compared to 51% average), 60% more than 2 hours per day. Many of the skills needed to build a family online are all those associated with building a family offline — empathy, sound judgement, the ability to multi-task and good communication skills. And mums make 80% of all purchasing decisions so are a key target demographic for businesses.

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Women who sign up to the scheme embark on a 20-week remote training programme. Training takes around 10-15 hours per week, and can largely be done at times to suit them.

With the support of Cochrane and her team, the mums are paired with a small business towards the end of their training and together they develop a social media campaign.

Kathryn Dyer, course facilitator for Digital Mums and herself a graduate of their program, will be coming in to Mama Social on Friday 27th May to tell us more about the story of how Digital Mums came about and how she became involved. She’ll also give some insight into the courses they offer and what is involved in studying on them, what live learning is all about and some examples of the campaigns which their trainees have run.

GUEST SPEAKER // Nicky King // bobbyrabbit.co.uk

On Friday 20th May we’ll be joined by Nicky King, founder and creative director of bobbyrabbit.co.uk.

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Nicky was previously a buyer for Habitat; she helped create their very first kids collection. She has passion for beautiful interiors and keepsakes; this led to her setting up her own web store following the birth of her two children.

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Bobbyrabbit.co.uk (named after Nicky’s own beloved childhood toy) is a skilfully curated online store stocking some of the top names in interiors and gifts for children including Kid O, Rock and Pebble, Pinch Toys and Oyoy.

Alongside the web store Nicky also runs the bobbyrabbit blog which provides inspiration for creating timeless spaces for igniting little imaginations.

Come down to The Showroom at 10:30am to hear all about Nicky’s remarkable journey and prepare to be inspired by her tips for creating magical spaces for your little ones!

MEET THE MAMA // Nicky King


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Who are you?

I’m Nicky, wife to Ewan and mum to 2 wonderful kids – Eloise (5) and Jasper (almost 3), our dog Maisie (7) and Bobby Rabbit (36.5).  I run my own business – Bobby Rabbit – an online shop and blog ‘for little treasures’, and a home for magical toys and home accessories for babies and children aged 0-8.

 

Where are you from?

I’m Sheffield through and through… I was born here, grew up here, moved away for a while and then came back again! We live in Millhouses, close to the park, the woods and the beautiful Peak District.

 

What do we need to know about you?

•I never really knew what I wanted to be when I grew up.

•My first ever job was in Paris, when I was 21. I went for 6 months, stayed for 4 years and have loved France ever since.

•My second ever job was in London, where I helped to create the very first Habitat Kids collection. Thanks to Habitat, I was lucky enough to travel all over the world, visiting some incredibly inspirational creators and makers. It was during my Habitat days that I first had the idea for Bobby Rabbit.

•Bobby Rabbit is a much loved toy from my childhood. He still exists today, and sleeps on the shelf inside a shoe box.

•Every now and again, my little girl cuddles Bobby Rabbit to sleep at night – and my heart melts!

•My mission is to create a shop full of ‘Bobby Rabbits’ – special treasures to be cherished when small, and remembered with a smile when tall.

•I married my little brother’s drinking buddy, a fellow Sheffielder, who is now my best friend and soulmate.

•I love running. Nothing beats an early morning run through Ecclesall Woods with my dog Maisie. It’s my ‘me’ time, and I couldn’t live without it.

•Due to being a mama, running a business and – well – running, coffee is my best friend.

•My little family is everything to me, and my kids are my inspiration.

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Where can we find your business/product

My website is www.bobbyrabbit.co.uk, and you can also find me on Instagram @bobbyrabbitkids (https://www.instagram.com/bobbyrabbitkids), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/bobbyrabbitkids) and Pinterest (https://uk.pinterest.com/bobbyrabbitkids) where I like to share my inspiration.

 

What is your favourite thing to do as a family?

Last year, we discovered a pretty special place in the south of France that we can not wait to visit again this summer. In fact, we all loved it so much, I wrote a little blog post about it – https://www.bobbyrabbit.co.uk/blogs/bobby-rabbit/50873409-the-perfect-retreat

 

Top mama tip

Having fun is more important than following the imaginary rules. Ban the books, go with your gut and embrace every opportunity that feels right.

 

Your mama confession…

One of our burglar alarm sensors (just above our kitchen table) makes a great Santa/elf/Easter bunny spy camera. It’s amazing how much food gets eaten when we ‘notice’ the red light popping on…

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Nicky will be our guest speaker at Mama Social on Friday 20th May

GUEST SPEAKER // Cat Powell // Artfelt

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On Friday 13th May we will be joined at Mama Social by Cat Powell; manager of Artfelt, Sheffield Children’s Hospital’s arts programme.

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Sheffield Children’s Hospital is in the middle of its largest re-development to date. Cat will be talking to us about how Artfelt has changed art at the hospital and their involvement in creating a new wing designed with children in mind.

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Artfelt’s aim is to transform the hospital’s walls and spaces with bright art, helping children recover in a stimulating, inspiring and interesting environment tailored to them. The programme also puts on workshops for the children to provide distraction during their time receiving treatment at the hospital.

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Artfelt is well known for collaborating with local artists and designers to create art, photography, graphics and decoration especially for the hospital. The artists work sensitively and creatively to address the needs of each space and the people who use it.

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We are really looking forward to welcoming Cat to Mama Social and hearing all about it!

 

FEATURE // POP UP AND PLAY // KINDER CAFE LEEDS

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‘Pop up and Play’ is a Leeds based events company focused on creating cool spaces for families to hang out.  Formed in 2014 through a mutual love of design and belief that just because something is created for children the aesthetic of a space should not be compromised. Since then they have developed into a company that not only specialises in families at events, but also theming and visual merchandising.

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As part of Leeds indie food festival they will be opening a custom built kinder café which will be accessible via a free water taxi from Leeds Station.

We caught up with Hannah from Pop up and Play to tell us more about it…

What is it?

Leeds first Pop Up restaurant designed with families in mind, inspired
by the kinder cafe culture in Germany and across Scandinavia.
Ultimately, its a space for parents who don’t want to compromise on
being in an interesting, design led space but also want to provide
their children with something creative to be part of. All of our
events are about creating cool spaces for families to enjoy together.
They’re cool, creative, imagination led and utterly instagrammable!

Where is it?

Set on the first floor of the old Google garage at Leeds Dock the
space is light airy and will be filled with interesting and exciting
activities for children. A purpose built imaginative play space,
reading nook and unique toys.

What can we expect?

Food is created by Tom Cockerill, the Rare Breed Chef. There will be
two brunch sittings per day and one supper. Brunch is a modern British
offering for adults, whilst kids will enjoy a visually stimulating
bento box brunch, this is rounded off by a family waffle for the
table. Supper is Italian inspired; meatballs three ways, buttered
linguini and finished with a duck egg creme brulee. Supper is
certainly a more relaxed affair with a movie on for the children and
red wine a plenty for the adults. Bear Nibbles will be there to run a
super cool veggie monster competition and Okido Magazine are supplying
us with the ultimate in cool brunch reading magazines for the kids.

The Details…
Adults: £12
Children: £8
Leeds Dock, Old Google Building
Saturday 21st and Sunday 22nd May
Brunch 9.30-11.30 // 12.30 – 2.30
Supper 5.30 – 7.30

Bookings and more details
via http://www.popupandplaycompany.co.uk/#!pop-up-cafe/yoehr [1]

MEET THE MAMA // Bea Marshall

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  • Who are you?
I’m Bea, single Mum to two incredible boys: Peep, age 11 and Jos, age 10. I’m also adoptive Mummy to a wonderful rescue dog called Coco The Super Staffy. I’m the Founder of Yes Parenting and I help Mamas all over the world to have an extraordinary relationship with their children without saying No every single day.

 

  • Where are you from?
I’m originally from Cheltenham in Gloucestershire but I’ve been in Sheffield since 2000 and it absolutely my home!

 

  • What do we need to know about you?
I’m a gifted over thinker which means that I tend to question everything. I also have a tendency to overcomplicate things so it is wonderful that the Universe provided me with a wonderful man who’s motto is “Keep It Simple”. On 29th February I asked him to marry me and he said Yes.

 

  • Where can we find your business/product?
Instagram is: @beathetree

 

  • What is your favourite thing to do as a family?
We love going on long walks with friends and dogs in the Peak District, preferably with a portion of chips each at the end.

 

  • Top mama tip
Prioritise Self Care, even if it is a small thing every day. Unless you first say Yes to your own needs you will be unable to effectively say Yes to your children’s needs.

 

  • Your mama confession…
Where do I start?! I think the worst I’ve ever felt about myself as a Mama are all the times I fantasised about throwing my children against walls or through windows when they were small. I used to feel so ashamed about it. Since working with other Mamas I’ve discovered how common this experience is and so I now talk about it openly. You never need to suffer in silence.

 

Bea will be talking at Mama Social on Friday 6th May 10:30-12 at The Showroom

MEET THE MAMA // KATHRYN DYER

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  • Who are you?

My name is Kathryn Dyer and I am 36 years old (I sometimes forget how old I am – should I be worried about that?) and I work for Digital Mums training women in social media management so they can work flexibly around their family lives.

  • Where are you from?

I’m Sheffield born and bred. Studied at Norton College and then after a ‘right of passage’ teenage holiday in Newquay that turned into working as a summer ice cream girl in a beach cafe there, decided to study Illustration and Advertising at Falmouth College of Arts. Despite my utter fear of deep sea water I enjoyed the outdoor life that living in Cornwall offered – snorkelling after work and bbqs on the beach, as well as the damp quiet winters!

  • What do we need to know about you?

I’m a long (suffering) Sheffield Wednesday fan, allotment dweller and food and wine appreciator! On a professional level, after graduating I went on to work within marketing and events for numerous businesses including a restaurant, paint your own ceramics cafe and interior design shop, all in Falmouth where I stayed for 7 years in total. It was here that I met my now husband Joe who is a East London boy through and through and in 2006 we decided to leave Cornwall and move up to London. I worked in marketing and web development for an architecture firm for 7 years and when on maternity leave with my first child, daughter Nell, I was made redundant. This was not unexpected but it did utterly throw me and the thought of a) trying to find a new job and b) in something that was flexible enough to accommodate my new lifestyle as a working mother filled me with dread and started to make me lose my confidence in my professional abilities. I must admit, I did the usual, or rather ‘traditional’, things of looking online for job vacancies and signing up to various recruitment companies but it was feeling very overwhelming, as well as dealing with the ‘mother’s guilt’ of leaving my child in the care of someone else! But, fate intervened and after chatting with a friend from my NCT group, she told me about an idea her friends (Nikki Cochrane and Kathryn Tyler) had and they were piloting a scheme to train women in social media management for businesses. To cut a long story short – I applied and got on the pilot scheme, completed the course and was then matched with a restaurant and events space in London. After a year of working as a freelance social media manager, Digital Mums approached me and asked if I would like to join the team on a permanent basis and work directly for them as their Course Facilitator…..so that is what I now do. Once someone has been accepted onto either of the Digital Mums training courses, they get handed over to the team I’m part of and for the next 20 weeks of their life they train to become new social media managers, and I help them on their way. We’ve been nicknamed ‘Captains of the Mothership’ by some of the trainees which I found hilarious!

It seemed as though fate intervened at a point when I really wasn’t sure what my life as a working mother was going to look like. Digital Mums has opened up so many new opportunities to me and after having my second child recently, I feel 100% enthusiastic about my future career and have no worries about making it work for me and my family – as Digital Mums is all about promoting flexible working. It’s really opened my eyes to how gender biased the traditional workplace can be too, something I was surprisingly ignorant about, and I’m really proud to work for a company that is promoting flexible working…not only promoting it, but proving it can work.

  • Where can we find your business/product?

Website – http://digitalmums.com/

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/DigitalMumsHQ

Instagram – @digitalmums

Twitter – @DigitalMumsHQ

  • What is your favourite thing to do as a family?

We moved to Walthamstow (I’m still to discover the houses when E17 grew up!) over two years ago and we love taking a long walk through the local marshes. It’s great to live in the capital city but have such close access to wide open space and nature. Our daughter calls it the Windy Marshes. We always stop half way through for a coffee and sausage sandwich and one of those fruity bear rolls for Nell (blatant bribery to sit still) in the cafe that sits next to the canal. Watching the local rowers and swans amble past is a pretty fine way to spend a Sunday morning with the family.

  • Top mama tip

Wing it. I kept wanting to find the ‘right’ way of doing something, for someone to give me the answer. But when it comes to children you’ve just got to follow your instinct and trust yourself. It’s one of the hardest jobs I’ve done being a Mum – peace keeper, nutritionist, dental hygienist, fashion stylist, costume designer, entertainer, pack horse, weightlifter etc. Nikki (my boss) once said something that really resonated with me – that my best IS good enough…we’re not perfect, but try our best and laugh along the way. Oh yeah, and always have fish fingers in the freezer! As much as I would love to say my daughter eats only organic quinoa and steamed vegetables, she doesn’t. And I love dipping that ‘extra/ spare’ fish finger in the ketchup too!

  • Your mama confession

Hahaha this has thrown me a bit – ermmmmmm……I’m wondering how long it will take my daughter to realise that her hair won’t grow like Elsa’s if she eats all her dinner.

 

Kathryn will be coming to talk at Mama Social on Friday 27th May. 10:30-12 at The Showroom