In June this year, I wrote a piece in The Estates Gazette around how COVID-19 has shone a light on the amazing work that keyworkers do for our local community. I also wrote about how praise and celebration of them alone is not enough. For those that can, we all share a collective responsibility to make a difference.
At LOWE, many of our guardians are facing a challenging and uncertain future.
We haven’t understood all of the consequences of COVID-19 yet from an economic standpoint; they are still unravelling. Huge Government bailouts mean that many of us haven’t felt the impact yet, but we will, and it’s likely we’ll see a long lasting recession.
During lockdown at LOWE, we did a bit of soul searching and we made a pact as a team: to support our Guardians to thrive and succeed as much as we possibly can.
We know that we have many bright, ambitious guardians (we’ve met all of them!) that are just waiting for that one breakthrough or opportunity. This got us thinking – how could we use our own business as a platform to help them? How can we support their cause and how can we facilitate their success?
To help, we’ve developed the LOWE Ambassador Programme, a selective program aimed at providing key workers and what we call ‘innovators’, ‘placemakers’ and ‘contributors’ a platform to pursue causes they are passionate about (through significant licence fee discounts) and a voice within LOWE.
Essentially, we’re creating 12 positions available every six months for guardians to become a LOWE ambassador. These guardians will be chosen by us, and will be rewarded with a 40% discount to their license fee. Perhaps more importantly, they will have a platform to promote their own work or charitable causes and a direct point of contact within LOWE to work on projects dedicated to supporting the local community.
The support from LOWE will depend on the ambassador’s cause, but it could range from financial support for a charitable cause, to marketing and promotion from LOWE for an exciting start-up.
During lockdown, we thought a lot about which of our guardians we should allow to apply to these ambassador positions. Keyworkers were obvious and added to the list immediately. However, we’re also passionate about entrepreneurism and the culture of the local community so we added ‘Innovators’ and ‘Placemakers’ too.
We define ‘Innovators’ as our big picture, cutting edge guardians looking for a foothold in London. They might be founding a start-up, building a sustainability programme or engaged in future focussed technology.
‘Placemakers’ are the people who make a house into a home, a postcode into a community. They fill the local area with sound, colour and culture. From musicians and artists, to small business owners and creators, they deserve our support.
‘Contributors’ are a special group of selfless guardians, who are dedicated to giving back to their local communities. This category is reserved for those who use their time outside of work to volunteer with charities or their local communities.
I’m excited about the ways we can support these Ambassadors causes. We’ll keep you updated with our choices and how we’re supporting them.
Founder & Director