International Women's Day: Inspirational Portsmouth event run by Urbond is packed

So many people turned up to an International Women’s Day conference in Portsmouth that some had to be – reluctantly – turned away.

By Emma Hatton
Tuesday, 8th March 2022, 4:55 am

The 111th International Women’s Day is today, but a pre-event on Saturday in Southsea was held by the Urbond charity at the Royal Beach Hotel in Southsea.

It saw dozens of people attend.

‘So many people turned up, we had to turn some away. Next year we’ll have to get a bigger venue,’ said Becky Lodge from Start-Up Disrupters, one of the sponsors.

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Guests at the conference Picture: Keith Woodland (050321-10)

Urbond supports racial harmony and equality.

The Urbond charity event was devised to provide support to women in the community concerning issues such as: inequality, health and bias.

The theme for this year was ‘women in work, women in business and women empowerment’.

Many attendees had the opportunity to discuss their experience in the business world, enjoy music by DJ Antionio Spencer, join salsa dance led by Kasia and live performances from Mary Red.

Attendees at the International Women's Day Conference. Picture: Keith Woodland (050321-66)

The attendees heard from an array of guest speakers such as Becky, the founder of Startup Distributors brand, and Marie Costa, founder of Portsmouth Africa Women’s forum, who spoke about their personal experiences in the workplace.

‘International Women’s day is an opportunity to raise awareness for women, from all walks of life, who work tirelessly for their job, their family and their wellbeing’ said Becky, when asked what the day meant to her.

Becky was selected as one of ‘Sky’s top 100 women’ in 2018 and now owns a company considered to be the primary support for UK start ups, with a social following of thousands.

‘The event was created to celebrate diverse women and help them come together to showcase their businesses. We had 32 different nationalities of women spread across the 92 people who attended and we celebrated each other’s careers while hearing inspirational talks from successful female business owners,’ said Becky.

‘We hope for bigger and better next year as we underestimated the power of the community.

‘So many people turned up, we had to turn some away. The power of this community, when women come together, is a spectacular thing.’

Urbond’s main goals are ‘working to advance diversity within our community so as to promote a community that is strong, cohesive and inclusive of all beliefs, backgrounds and ideologies’.