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Innovator Spotlight: Hannah and Mark

Alongside the financial support our People and Place innovators receive, Footwork also draws on expertise and input from a pool of mentors to help innovators establish the building blocks that will set them and their initiative on the path to long-term success. Read more about how we support local social innovators.


Mark, Founder of Shared Assets, has been supporting Hannah, Becca and Julia on their strategy, to better understand the value of Railway Gardens within the community. In doing so, they have been working towards feeling more confident about the future of the project and what they need in place to ensure their success.



“Footwork has been really open to listening about what we genuinely needed. Shared Assets could not have been a more perfect organisation to hook us up with! We were paired with a mentor who understood the challenges and needs we were describing. Identifying the appropriate mentor and the upfront planning for what we wanted to get out of the programme was brilliant” - Hannah

Mark helped the team understand areas for growth and improvement within the project and encouraged them to consider alternative approaches to better inform and involve others. Together, they set up and consolidated a series of strategy documents, which they were able to use to support a recent funding application. They were also able to develop a ‘culture of care’ as a way of helping everyone involved in the project better understand how their contribution fits into the bigger picture.


“What makes People and Place unique is the personal relational nature of it. Footwork have the knowledge of both parties and the care that went into those matches is what is really important to making it work” - Mark

What’s next for Hannah, Becca and Julia?

With Mark’s support, Hannah, Becca and Julia were able to break down the core ingredients needed to make Railway Gardens run efficiently, and they were able to draw out key elements to enable them to build capacity. As a result, the Railway Gardens team were recently able to carve out roles for a new Facilities Manager and several ‘guardian’ roles to better support them in looking after the site.


“I know the value that innovators get from being able to pick up the phone and speak to someone. I don’t feel like I’m doing anything, except listening and cheerleading. But for them it’s gold dust and I think there is something really valuable in that mentor/mentee relationship. It’s always a pleasure to do, and for people like Hannah, it’s so valuable for them to have that.” - Mark

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