It is International Women’s Day, an opportunity to celebrate women across the globe and all their achievements. We are lucky here at Aspire to have so many incredible and influential women on our team. Each one with their own diverse set of skills they bring to the company, and all with amazing back stories of how they got to where they are today.
We’d love to share some of the inspirational stories from our female directors with you, displaying determination, commitment and always facing adversity with an open minded approach.
It’s only right that we kick off with our Managing Director and founder Cheryl Hadland, who consistently inspires us with her passion for quality care, training and sustainability.
Cheryl founded Tops Day Nurseries in 1990 when she was 30 years old and a mother of 2 small boys. She had been a volunteer committee member and pre-school assistant in a playgroup with her 3 year old, whilst attending a pre-school leaders course. Cheryl decided that opening a day nursery that was open all day rather than just mornings was needed in the area, so she reduced her workload at her scuba dive centre and opened the first Tops Day Nursery, Tops Parkstone in Herbert Ave, Poole. Aspire Training Team was born from this, as well as her charity Gecco, all thriving companies. Cheryl completed a 2 year course with the PPA (now called the Pre School Learning Alliance), a Montessori correspondence course, and then the NVQ3 in Early Years Care & Education. Over the following 10 years she completed her Certificate of Education, Degree, and Masters Degree in Education at Southampton University.
Maria, Director of Central and Customer Services, joined the company as a Nursery Assistant back in 1990. Since joining the company she has achieved her Levels 2, 3 and 4 in Childcare and Level 7 in Management and Leadership. Maria said “I really enjoy working for the company as I love being part of such a fantastic team. We all have such amazing strengths as individuals but together as a team we achieve so much and I’m always so proud to say I’ve worked for Cheryl for 32 years. It’s like being part of a very special family.”
Harriet joined Hadland Care Group as Business Development Manager in 2017. She holds a Masters in Early Years Education and has Early Years Teacher Status. Prior to joining Hadland Care Group, she had worked in various roles in the Early Year sector, including owning/managing a nursery and being a management consultant for a number of other settings. Her first degree is in Business Studies; how businesses work have always interested her greatly and she think it’s really important that those involved in the Early Years sector have a good understanding of the business model it’s built on and what’s required to keep it sustainable.
As well as the many other women that keep Aspire running and great.
Happy International Women’s Day!