Development Bank of Wales sponsors #LlaisAwards for fourth year running

Marketing and Communications Director
Sustainability in business

Llais Cymru’s Welsh Women in Business Awards, or the #LlaisAwards as it’s known, celebrates women’s important contribution to the business world in Wales. Llais Cymru’s Awards is a unique, national and bilingual celebration of women in businesses of all types and all sizes.

The event was founded by Heulwen Davies, Director of Llais Cymru, known for her incredible passion for supporting and empowering women in Wales. In 2017, she launched the bilingual blogzine Mam Cymru, to support mothers in Wales. In 2018 she published her book ‘Mam Croeso i’r Clwb’ for new parents, published by Y Lolfa. More recently she contributed her story and supported Cylchgrawn Cara with ‘Menopositif’, the first Welsh book about the menopause.

For the fourth consecutive year, the Development Bank of Wales is the main sponsor of the event.

Beverley Downes, Marketing and Communication Director, at Development Bank of Wales, said: “Once again we’re very proud to be supporting Heulwen who works tirelessly to spotlight and celebrate the achievements of women in Welsh business. 

“The Llais Awards provides a platform for role models and leaders to share their experience on how they’ve overcome barriers to entrepreneurship and played an important role in creating an inclusive Welsh economy. Here at the Development Bank, we’re passionate about our commitment to supporting women in business in communities across Wales and ensuring businesses reflect the diversity of the communities we serve.

“Around a third of the businesses we support have women directors, a figure we’re determined to continue to impact positively.” 

Heulwen Davies, Director of Llais Cymru, said: “As a mother of an 11 year old daughter and being raised in a family and community of strong women, empowering and helping women in every way I can is really important to me. Running a business is difficult for everyone, especially now, but I believe it’s even harder for women. Why? Menstruation, pregnancy, menopause, without mentioning the expectations of society. 

“The fact that women still go ahead to build and run businesses, and create opportunities for others, is something that needs to be celebrated. This is exactly why I founded these Awards – to give a voice and platform for all the women who do amazing things in our Welsh communities.”

Once again, there are categories that recognise the contribution of women from various fields, from science, engineering and technology to unique categories like ‘Mum in Business’. A new category this year is ‘Menopause Champion’, something Heulwen herself is very passionate about.

Heulwen added: “As someone who’s experiencing the perimenopause, I can confidently say that this is the biggest challenge I have ever faced in my personal and work life. We need to break the stigma, normalise the conversation, especially in the workplace. So many women have to give up their career because of the lack of support during this period. That’s why I’ve launched this new category, to champion those employers who do support women through the menopause and to encourage more business owners to do this. 

“This category is open to businesswomen who support staff through the menopause and also those women who succeed in maintaining a business during the menopause.”

In 2023, the Awards received an incredible 4,328 nominations.

The nominations for #LlaisAwards 2024 will be live and open on from March 8– International Women’s Day and Llais Cymru’s 4th birthday! The closing date for nominations is June 8 the shortlist, made up of the women who receive the most nominations, being published in July. The two women who receive the most nominations in each category will be invited to the Awards evening in the Egin in September.

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