On Wednesday 22nd of March, I was driving to the train station to pick up some train tickets. I had a Sky News notification come through that said ‘Gunshots heard outside of the houses of Parliament.’ As the day went on and the news developed, it was the worst. There was a terrorist attack on Westminster Bridge. Ironically, the train tickets I had collected, were for a trip to London for an awards ceremony, which was being held on Westminster Bridge in just 48 hours time.
When I arrived in London, it was hard to believe that something so frightening had taken place less than 48 hours previous. There were clusters of flowers along the bridge and a poignant bagpipe player with a discreet sign that said ‘No one will destroy your dreams’
I arrived at the hotel which over looked Big Ben, Westminster Bridge and the London Eye for an event called The ‘Soldiering On Awards’. An award ceremony celebrating the successes and dedication of people in our Military.
The ‘Unsung Hero Business Start Up Programme’ a course that I studied a couple of years ago through the military and the University Of Wolverhapton, was nominated for an award. This course has helped me so much with my business journey and I am so proud to be part of it. Other nominees included Owen Pick, Adam Francis and Row For Recovery.
Cocktail dress on, champagne in hand and, well, I have never seen so many medals in one room. Hundreds of Military servicemen and women from each force were beautifully decorated in medals. To know what these servicemen and women went through to achieve these could probably only be seen in our very worst nightmares.
I could talk to you for hours about the stories that were in this room. Far too much for one Blog so it will be continued…
I wanted to tell you about these ladies…in red. The most beautiful red fishtail dresses to be a little more precise. The men swooned and the girls well….we swooned too! It was impossible not to. Gliding around effortlessly helping people with tickets, showing people to their seats and all the while being fantastically beautiful and charming. They were so friendly, smiley, professional and approachable. These girls in red were the ‘Hosties 4 Heros’. I was lucky enough to speak with the gorgeous Sophy Mohon the founder and Managing Director.
Hosties 4 Heroes was founded by Sophy in 2011. She has dedicated all her spare time to fundraising for our military charities. She recruited her fellow colleagues at the time from Virgin Airlines who were all Virgin Air Hostesses to be part of her ‘Hostie’ crew. Volunteering in their own time to help at the event, It turns out that these girls are pretty special. They worked so hard. Sophy explained that they should have had more girls working that night. ‘Siobhan had bleeding feet at midnight’ She said, but they still enjoyed every second.
Hosties For Heroes mission statement is “To support, to respect, to appreciate. It is with honour that we fund raise for our great British Forces. Our way of showing gratitude, with warmth, fun and a smile!” another favourite quote of Sophy’s is “toughness is in the soul & spirit…not in muscles” and another she says, is probably “is my lipstick still on….!” All equally represent what the Hosties are all about.
Sophy has recruited all of the girls on her team and each one dedicates their time free of charge to work at events similar to ‘Solidering On Awards’ all within the Military arena.
To date, Sophy explains that her and her fellow Hosties have raised in excess of £28,000 for help4heroes and they are currently sitting at just over £5,000 of their £10,000 target for Mission Sassy in June. Mission Sassy is a two day SAS inspired challenge hosted by the SAS Who Dares Wins guys Foxy and Ollie. You can read more about Foxy and Ollies company, BREAK POINT here.
So far the girls have 3 team sponsors out of the required 4 - One of them being the incredible Simon Brown from Blind Veterans UK who won the Peoples choice award at the Soldiering on event on Friday. He has very generously donated 1k towards one of the teams. So if anyone would like to know how to sponsor the Hosties for this event and head up on of the teams please get in touch with Sophy. Even a one off donation as a gift for the Hostie that raises the most money - one of them is well over 1k already !
I asked Sophy to explain more about Mission Sassy…
“Mission Sassy is extra special to me as it’s my initial vision/dream of Hosties - a brutal, physical and mental challenge taken on by an extreme contrast of glamorous air hostesses.It’s so exciting seeing the dream come to life!
Hosties has been a bumpy road at times , especially at the beginning, setting up and fitting everything in between flying. However, now I have the best team a girl could wish for contributing to the growth of Hosties. With the incredible Jill Tidman and Siobhan Easterbrook as my wing women and at the heart of the hosties, anything is possible! Each with husbands in the Forces they are naturally so passionate about supporting the military causes and I can’t thank them enough for their equal vision and commitment. Then of course, it goes without saying, we have all the crazy, charitable cats raring to take on a challenge to fundraise and prove there is so MUCH more to a Hostie than meets the eye - all the girls that have been involved from the beginning to present (and no doubt future) are fantastic, dedicated and all play an important role within the organisation. Without these girls it wouldn’t be possible. So much money has been raised, so a huge thank you to each and every one of them”. If you would like to support The Hosties MISSION SASSY you can do so through their just giving page here
The Hosties concept of ‘Shaking up a cocktail of glamour’ is a fun way to demonstrate our support and appreciation for our Great British Forces and military charities, our way of saying thank you.
Sophy wanted to share the fantastic sponsors who have contributed massively throughout their Hosties for Heroes journey. Boden Marbella Dress Company, Proskins, Air Support and our newest and taking part in MISSION SASSY the lovely Paul Turner from Alf Turner.
If anyone would like to support ‘Hosties 4 Heroes’ by sponsoring them in their upcoming events please get in touch with Sophy or myself and I can put you in contact with her. It would be great to close their gap for their Mission Sassy event.
Sophy – Sending you so much love and luck to you and your gorgeous girls! You are a huge inspiration and are doing so much good to help our men and women who continue to protect us. You have been a delight to speak with and i have loved hearing your story.
Thank you also to all who were invloved in the Soldiering On Awards Event. It was a truly wonderful evening which moved me to tears on several occasions.