Latest News | 28 February 2023

Cleaning firm supporting refugees named Rising Star winner

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Commercial cleaning start-up Upbeat Clean, which provides employment for refugees, has been revealed as Marketing Derby’s Rising Star for 2023.

At the inward investment agency’s Annual Business Event, the social enterprise was announced as the winner of the competition, which aims to give a helping hand to upcoming business ventures.

Upbeat Clean was founded by existing Bondholder Upbeat Communities, an organisation that works across the East Midlands supporting refugees and those seeking asylum to integrate into life in the UK and empowering them to thrive.

Upbeat Clean combines cleaning services with life changing employment, enabling Derby’s refugee community to access training and rebuild their lives through real living wage employment.

It supports refugees from all over the world who come to Derby – and particularly in the past year, those who have come from war-torn Ukraine.

Fittingly, the date of the announcement of Upbeat Clean as the new Rising Star coincided with the first anniversary of the invasion of Ukraine.

At the Annual Business Event, Michael Gladwell, head of enterprise at Upbeat Clean, said: “We set up Upbeat Clean because we were aware that refugee mums in particular, who had fled with their children and were trying to rebuild their lives, were struggling to do so because they could not find a job.

“We set up a commercial cleaning company because it was something that had the potential to create 50 to 60 jobs.

“To date, we carry out the cleaning contracts for 23 organisations.”

Among them are Marketing Derby Bondholders Derby County Community Trust, Althaus Digital, QUAD and Déda – who Michael singled out for their support.

He said: “Together, these organisations have helped 12 refugee women find their first job, transforming their lives and making them feel empowered.

“We would love to talk to more organisations in the Bondholder community about how we can work with them.

“It really is a win-win situation. Not only would they get some of the hardest working cleaners, but they will also be playing their part in transforming lives.”

Marketing Derby launched the search for its next Rising Star back in November.

The winner receives a complimentary year of Bondholder membership, along with local publicity and invitations to must-attend events.

Last year’s winner was So Good Kombucha, a business founded by Lesley So, which creates and sells a healthy alternative to fizzy drinks.

Lesley was at the Annual Business Event to announce Upbeat Clean as the Rising Star for 2023.

She told the event: “Winning Marketing Derby’s Rising Star has definitely been the absolute highlight of the business so far.

“It has been transformative. It has put us on the map – and introduced us to a wonderful community, who have shown us so much love and support.”

For more information on Upbeat Clean’s services contact Michael on 07814 660545 or visit here.

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