International Women's Day  #InspireInclusion

International Women's Day #InspireInclusion

7 Mar 2024

In an ideal gender equal world, individuals would be treated based on their abilities and character rather than stereotypes or biases associated with their gender. Discrimination and inequality would be things of the past, with everyone having equal opportunities to succeed and thrive. Embracing diversity would be the norm, recognizing the value that different perspectives and experiences bring to the table. Instead of being divisive, differences would be celebrated and used as a source of strength and innovation.

At Falcon over 75% workforce and our leadership team are female, and we are proud to have a strong representation of women in key positions. Our commitment to empowering women is reflected in the fact that both our CEO and Deputy CEO are female, serving as inspirational figures for our team and the community we serve. We believe in the importance of diversity and inclusion, and strive to create a workplace where everyone, regardless of gender, feels valued and supported.

We asked our female leaders for a short statement of who they are to gain insight into their backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives can provide valuable lessons and inspiration for others. By understanding the journeys and challenges these leaders have faced, we can learn about their resilience, determination, and the strategies they employed to overcome obstacles. Through sharing their stories, female leaders can empower and motivate individuals, especially young women, to pursue their ambitions and break barriers in male-dominated fields. These statements can highlight the diverse pathways to leadership and showcase the unique qualities and strengths that women bring to positions of influence and authority.

"International Women's Day is a testament to the resilience, strength, and achievements of women worldwide and with the theme of ‘Inspire Inclusion’ it made me think about the culture at Falcon Support Services. Inclusion for me is about feeling valued, respected and like you belong. As a charity we strive to reconnect the most excluded and we make intentional efforts to dismantle barriers that exclude and marginalise certain groups. The benefits of inclusion and belonging are not only for the individual but for the organisation, communities, and society as a whole.

We have a saying at Falcon Support Services that “once part of the Falcon Family you’re always part of it” and I see staff, volunteers, and service users return to the organisation for its inclusive world. It is a special place, working in a psychologically informed way, understanding the unique challenges women can face, such as the menopause, and where there is support that enables people to excel.

I’m honoured to be the Deputy CEO of Falcon Support Services, a female-led Charity working with so many inspirational colleagues. Women are shattering glass ceilings and carving paths for future generations and we need to continue to eliminate gender-based discrimination and work towards equity, diversity, and inclusion. By fostering environments where everyone feels included, valued, and respected, we unleash potential and create opportunities.” - Rachel Hall Deputy CEO

“I'm Rupa and I'm currently working at Falcon Support Services, as Support and Engagement Manager. I have been in the charity for over 4 years now and began working as a Project Worker in one of our Loughborough locations I have learnt a great deal about working with homeless adults in Charnwood, as my background, prior to this, was working with homeless young people in Leicester city center.

In my spare time I like to get out and about when I can and I enjoy the occasional adrenaline rush! The last thing I did was hiking the Ladder of Kotor, as well as the Jin Mao Tower Skywalk, in Shanghai!” - Rupa Mistry Support & Engagement Manager

“My name is Sarah Whannell and I am Head of Community Development and I have worked for FSS for nearly 11 years. My role is to develop new projects that support vulnerable people across LLR. Developing these services gives me a purpose, every single person is entitled to support with whatever crises they are currently going through. I am described as a motivated and dedicated manager, and I have a keen eye for identifying gaps in services.

When I am not at work I am spending time with my beautiful children who keep me on my toes as much as my jobs. I strongly believe my job is also setting a good example for my children.” Sarah Whannell Head of Community Development

“My name is Sue Fitzgerald and I’m the HR manager at Falcon Support Services

In the 15 ½ years I’ve worked here I’ve seen a lot of changes. When I first started, I was based at Marshalls Court & Park Road, after which I moved to Queens Road

After Queens Road I moved to The Falcon Centre and then back to Queens Road again

After running out of office space I relocated to work from home which is where I have since stayed. My new office colleagues are my 2 dogs Doogie & Milo

When I took on the HR role here, we only had 15 staff, I know manage approximately 100 HR files and I have implemented many of the systems we use across the organisation

I have always loved the variety of my role in the charity and before working from home really loved the service user engagement.” Sue Fitzgerald HR Manager.

By working together to promote women's equality and inclusion, we can create a society where everyone feels empowered and valued. It is through collective effort and a shared commitment to #InspireInclusion that we can break down barriers and build a world where all individuals, regardless of gender, can reach their full potential. Let us envision this future and strive towards making it a reality for generations to come.

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Falcon Support Services is a Registered Charity

Charity number: 1103101. Company number: 04177320