The 'incredible' women of Portsmouth receive awards by public demand

The Inspirational Women of Portsmouth Awards was a ‘truly uplifting’ Portsmouth event celebrating the many inspirational women in the city in all their glory.

By Elsa Waterfield
Tuesday, 22nd March 2022, 3:04 pm

The event, now in its fourth year, was hosted on Friday 11 March at the Royal Maritime Club by Pamodzi Creatives, a collective which aims to ‘challenge, affirm and inspire.’

A panel of Trailblazers shortlisted finalists from over 250 nominations sent in by the public between November and February last year, whittling it down to just 15 awards presented in the fields such as Business, Health, Sports, Community and more.

Founder of the Pamodzi ‘tribe’ and organiser of the event, Roni Edwards, said: ‘The heart of it is to celebrate inspirational women in the city, we don’t call them winners.

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“We call them award recipients.’

Roni, who was born in Zambia but now lives in Southsea, is keen to celebrate women equally in their achievements and commemorate each and every one of the nominees for the event.

‘This year, I wanted to focus on celebrating past award recipients, we did that through song, poetry, drama, and also some weight lifting,’ laughs Roni.

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Inspirational Women of Portsmouth Awards 2022 The Inspirational Women of Portsmouth Awards Credit: Liberty Photography

The event, open to the public, was attended by an array of inspirational women supporting each others achievements, also with an appearance from Lord Mayor Frank Jonas and Lady Mayoress Joy Maddox.

Hosted by Pamodzi Creatives, the Awards are an opportunity for you to nominate any inspirational woman or girl who has made a positive impact to their community, whatever the context.

The event was supported by Portsmouth City Council along with local firms The Middle Group, StartUp Disruptors, Liberty Photography and more.

Hannah Roper, 40, runs her coaching and mentoring business, The Female Creative, alongside a full-time job and being a mum.

Inspirational Women of Portsmouth Awards 2022 The Inspirational Women of Portsmouth Awards Credit: Liberty Photography

She was nominated and presented an award in the established business category.

‘The evening was fantastic, it was just so lovely to be around so many women championing other women,’ says Hannah.

‘Quite often women can be pitted against each other in a male dominated environment, it’s amazing what Roni has created.’

Sophie Venables, 49 from Southsea, said: ‘Having spent 25 years working in and with schools, I have myself been inspired by so many amazing colleagues and children. Excellent and successful teachers make the biggest difference to how well children do at school.’

Inspirational Women of Portsmouth Awards 2022 The Inspirational Women of Portsmouth Awards Credit: Liberty Photography

‘Thank you to the Team at Pamodzi Creatives for allowing me to tell my story and honour those in education who have been part of my own journey.’

Heidi Clevett, 32, was presented an award in the STEM category, (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) after raising over £5,500 in aid of brain tumour research following the death of her mum to a brain tumour.

‘Just listening to all the nominations, every single one was so moving. It was a really safe space, you could really feel that everyone was rooting for one another,’ says Heidi.

Heidi’s contribution to the STEM category coincides with her role as Head of Technology at the Maritime and Coastguard agency.

‘It didn’t feel like there were any winners, you were in a room full of really inspiring, strong incredible women,’ she adds.

‘What an incredible thing to have here in Portsmouth, it was truly uplifting.’

Inspirational Women of Portsmouth Awards 2022 The Inspirational Women of Portsmouth Awards Credit: Liberty Photography

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