North Tyneside entrepreneur Sarah Sutton has been drumming up interest in a bank initiative offering start-up grants to new businesses.
Lloyds Bank’s branch in Whitley Bay invited Sarah, founder of Boom!, a music tuition project launched in the town in 2014, was invited along to explain to customers the benefits of running a business with social aims.
Sarah works with young people, the elderly, the disabled and those from disadvantaged backgrounds to boost their confidence by teaching them drumming and about the history of Brazilian music.
The former teacher said: “As part of the Lloyds Bank social entrepreneurs programme, I am developing additional skills which will help me get Boom! off the ground.”
“I have benefited greatly from being part of a community of people with similar goals and learning from their experiences and had the opportunity to work with a dedicated business mentor from the bank.
“Having the opportunity to showcase Boom! in the Lloyds Bank Whitley Bay branch has provided a perfect opportunity to reach a new audience with the good work we are doing in this community and equally to show the benefits of joining the programme.”
The samba drumming enthusiast also offered advice on setting up a social enterprise via Lloyds Bank’s social entrepreneurship programme, run in partnership with the School for Social Entrepreneurs and subsidised by the Big Lottery Fund.
Sarah has been a student of the bank’s entrepreneurship programme, run by the school’s north east operation SSE North East, since quitting her job as a primary school teacher after 20 years to join a samba band and lead drumming workshops. She is part of the Whitley Bay Community Carnival team too.
The bank programme offers £4,000 start-up grants and a year’s worth of training and mentoring, and a follow-up scheme for those seeking to expand their enterprises can provide grants of up to £15,000.
Bank manager Julie Ross added: “It has been fantastic for colleagues and customers to meet Sarah and Boom! in our Whitley Bay branch.
“It really brings to life the Lloyds Bank social entrepreneurs programme and will hopefully encourage more people to consider making a positive impact on society through starting up their own social enterprises.
“The programme perfectly demonstrates our group’s continued commitment to help Britain prosper.”
Applications for the 2016-17 programme will close at 1pm next Monday. To find out more, visit www.yourideastartshere.co.uk