Alex Archibald - Founder of Lyfbar
“Amazing charity that really helped change my LYF… We have met life changing individuals through the help of Richard and the team and genuinely couldn’t be more fulfilled from there support.”
“SYST has been key to my journey so far. I came to SYST and approached Richard before I started my business and, with a lack of people to go to within the area, I found Richard enormously helpful; building relationships with the correct people is essential and Richard helped me connect with like-minded and well situated people within the area. I believe strongly in the ethos of SYST and I hope to see them grow to their full potential”
Sam Brett-Atkin - Artist
Originally from Shropshire, he studied Graphic Communication at Bath School of Art and Design. He now lives back in Shropshire and works from his home studio. Sam said “Around the same time, I met Richard Nuttall who told me all about the Shropshire Youth Support Trust and the benefits of being an AsSYSTed business. I have been supported by Richard and SYST in my business development, including the provision of display space for my work and putting me in contact with an experienced Shropshire artist for professional advice. I am looking forward to the prospect of benefiting from having pop-up displays and demonstration set-ups at The British Ironwork Centre, thanks to SYST. I am thrilled to be afforded such opportunities.”
Maisie - Flatpack Furniture Ltd
Flatpack Furniture Ltd originally traded in 2014, and has now been taken over by Maisie, and is getting ready to open its virtual doors to customers once again by the end of 2016. Maisie has said “It is a very exciting time for us, but not one that was likely to ever happen without the help and support of SYST. SYST were able to provide us with the financial support and advice we needed to help us open an office (the heart and soul of our online company), giving us the space we needed to start the company back up again somewhere other than on my lap in the discomfort of my living room. I now have a functional space that is organised and getting ready to be filled with the results of our live business, something that was a huge barrier to me when I was trying to do this alone, from home, without their support. And as a new business owner with very limited experience of running an online business, SYST have provided unending support and advice with the set-up of Flatpack Furniture Ltd and on managing my own time and priorities when running a business, which I have no doubt will continue into us going live at the end of this year.
I am incredibly grateful for their support and without them, would not be in a position to provide the following information about what we at Flatpack Furniture Ltd will be bringing you from 2017 onwards!”
Sally Sparrow, Photographer
Freelance beauty, fashion and editorial photographer Sally said “SYST have helped me to finally be able to afford my own studio space. They are also only an email or phone call away if I have any problems or need advice, which for a self-employed person is so rare! Normally you feel you are alone but Richard and the SYST team truly make you feel you are supported. They have also offered me a selection of clinics and workshops to push my career further and help me develop a more business mind. I look forward to what I can accomplish this year”
The Cosplay Forge, Cosplay Retail
The Cosplay Forge sells a range of hard to find Cosplay materials from around the globe, and with the help of Showmasters are running interactive workshops to help people transition into Cosplay.
“We are hugely grateful for everything that SYST have done to support us on our journey so far and look forward to continuing to work with them as we grow our business”
Gary W Matthews, Fine Art and Portrait Artist
Gary is a Shropshire based artist working from his home studio. He mainly produces original figurative artworks and portraits.
“I met Richard Nuttall at a jobs fair in Shrewsbury where he told me about SYST and the benefits to me as an artist of being an ASYSTED business. I have been supported by SYST in helping develop my business in a number of ways. I have attended lectures on marketing and received individual expert advise on how to reach customers. Thanks to SYST I now have a Business mentor from Good2Great. I have also been put in touch with The British Ironwork Centre who, as well as providing me with a space to display my work for a few days, also commissioned a large portrait of the actor Roger Moore as 007. I look forward to working with SYST in future and can heartily recommend them”
Isaac Perren, Founder of Natural Switch
Natural Switch was created to integrate natural ways of living into our daily lives. Their aim is to revolutionise the way we look at our health and environment as individuals. They hope to pioneer the development of natural ways of living through the innovative design of the Natural Lifestyle program and products.
“Working with Richard and the team at SYST had been a consistent pleasure. They have helped me grow my business in ways I would have never thought possible and supported me when no one else could help. An experience like no other”
Nick Bourne - The TinKan Ltd
I have worked with the Shropshire Youth Support Trust for around 3 months during the launch of our Graphic and Product Design Business TheTinKan Ltd.
Although I have successfully run businesses in the past they been incredibly supportive with mentors and sessions that have really helped in giving clarity TK what I wanted to achieve.
If you are looking to start a new business and you fit the criteria then you will gain tremendous support here.
Mark Bradshaw - Sales Director for Pronounce Media Ltd
Shropshire Youth Support Trust (SYST) were extremely helpful and supportive in the early days of setting up our business and that support has continued through our early stages. They have been a great resource for many small businesses across Shropshire particularly during these truly difficult times of shutdowns and Covid disruptions. We very much support the valuable work they do and wish them continued success in the future.
Fantastic organisation aimed at aiding todays youth by giving helpful advice and support. Brilliant idea and a great way to gain invaluable experience that will only benefit people in business in the future. Definitely an organisation I would recommend to get involved with.
Denise - Swim With Style
I attended the marketing strategy workshop online. There were only a few of us on the workshop so we were able to discuss our own businesses in detail and get pointed in the right direction. The tutor was really encouraging and helpful.
“SYST are an amazing charity which helped me through a tough part of my life. Having been made redundant from my previous job they gave me a helping hand in improving myself and my business. They gave me confidence and an ear to talk to.
Although I never got through to applying for a grant to set myself up. The staff have been extremely helpful even after me starting my job. Each team member is lovely and the couple of training demonstrations that I attended were extremely insightful.”
Lillie & Sam - GREEN OPTIONS
“SYST has helped us realise our zero waste package free shop. They have put is in touch with Buy from shropshire, who in turn helped us secure and start up in our first position in the centre of Shrewsbury, at the Darwin Shopping Centre. This has allowed us to minmize our initial costings, saving on solicitor costs and also benefitting off a lower initial rent, allowing us to re-invest our earnings back into the shop and building something quite special. Also through SYST we have had help from a qualified solicitor, and advice and support from passionate and local experts/businesses.”
“I found SYST when I was just struggling to keep on the right path with starting up and the team have helped me to focus hugely. With their help on the business plan template he has secured an investor to provide required start-up capital. The space SYST can offer it’s businesses have provided us with an affordable HQ and the contacts that the team has have provided us with links into business opportunities. I could not have done it without them! I look forward to working with them continuing into the future!”
Chloe - PINK FLAMINGO MARKETING
“I worked with SYST in 2016 where I was assisted with my business plan and was put in touch with the great Mike Paul who assured me I was on the right track. SYST helped me build my business. Richard and the team at SYST are always on-hand with advice and support when I need it and thankful I found them”
Speaking of how Covid-19 has affected her business, Chloe said the following:
“Covid has made me think of my business in a very different way – now offering all my services online and running group programmes and courses which allow me to work with more businesses. It has been a very innovative time for myself and my clients, and I admire the resilience and creativity which 2020 has brought about”
Caroline Bailey - Hunkington House Kitchen
“I first met the Shropshire Youth Support Trust in Autumn 2018 when my business was just an idea and since then I have attended so many different training courses, which as a business owner there is so many different things to learn so I have done Zoom classes with them in Lockdown and their free training support they offer is just phenomenal.
If you are a business owner and are looking for some additional training then I would definitely get in touch with them. They have always sent through information over the two years that I have been using them and I have made some great business contacts, learnt loads but there is still loads more to learn, so I couldn’t recommend them highly enough.
Thank you, Richard and thank you to all your team, it’s been brilliant.”
Charlie Bueno - Charlie Bueno Photography
My name Is Charlie Bueno and I do photography and the business name is called Charlie Bueno Photography.
Photography came really easy to me when I was studying in college and it was an idea to do something that I loved doing instead of your typical 9 – 5 job.
The Shropshire Youth Support Trust has helped me by giving me not only their support to the business but all the workshops they do from marketing and advertising to book-keeping and I get to use the space that they have given me. Units are quite expensive to hire out because of the long term lease on them but here I can do it on a daily basis or ad-hoc so it makes it more flexible for me and a lot more affordable.
I’ve not always been the most confident and going to the different workshops you get to meet all types of people and that just gives you more confidence to invest your time doing what it is you like.
The main thing they have helped me with is the marketing side of everything and by that I mean how to market not only websites or social media but to also how to do a leaflet properly and how to get word of mouth out there properly and how to get people to come back to you and just the support that they constantly give you and the feedback they give you on what you do.
I got four shoots coming up and that’s all by SYST, they have promoted me and recommended me to loads of people.
As long as you believe in yourself and some other people do like the Shropshire Youth Support Trust do then your set.
Pixie Greatorex - Nails by Pixie
I decided to start my own press on nail business during lockdown and I had a vague idea of how to take it to a certain level but I was guessing or basing it on my own mixed bag of research! That’s when I reached out to see if there was any local support to help guide me to bring it to fruition! I attended online workshops which were so helpful! Then I applied for a mentor to support me with the social media! SYST have helped me negotiate my way through an otherwise difficult process! I learned about regulations, tax, advertising, branding and more! Things that even if I researched them I wouldn’t have been able to achieve the same level of knowledge! I highly recommend putting your trust in this wonderful charity! Thank you for all the help you have given me!
Alex Leighton - Threadway Embroidery
Working with SYST to start my business has been a brilliant opportunity for me.
The workshops I’ve done have taught me a lot about the logistics of running a business, as well as keeping personally motivated on my business journey.
SYST were able to set me up with a mentor and through this, I’ve been given even more support that I otherwise wouldn’t be able to access.
Jordan McCabe - Voice Over Artist
Hi! I’m Jordan, I’m 29 and I’ve been working with SYST since May 2021; I was referred to their
services by The Hive in Shrewsbury and for that I am mighty thankful as SYST have helped with
discovering the path I need to achieve my goal of a Voiceover Career and be financially stable.
Before I started working with SYST and even before them, The Hive, I was struggling with anxiety and
depression, on top of my existing disabilities of ADHD and Aspergers Syndrome; I had spent the last 9
years trying to find the right path to proceed with in life, I had gone from short-term job to
short-term job, never being given a true opportunity or being discarded without understanding my
Hell, my longest term of employment was 2 years (June 2017 – July 2019) and with that, I was
dismissed due to being accused of intimidation when I was simply doing my job as instructed in care
plans and since then, I gradually fell further into that pit of despair, and more so when COVID-19
became a factor and as a result, my own anxiety was amplified tenfold.
However, things improved from April 2021 when I was put in contact initially with The Hive, who
after a few sessions with them, put me in contact with SYST in May 2021. My first contact was with
Jason and Richard; I initially felt intimidated, but I was made to feel much more relaxed.
With time, further Zoom meetings, and then when comfortable to do so, in person meetings, I began
to open up with the SYST team and they have continued to help alleviate some of the anxiety caused
by current world events.
SYST have provided me support via Zoom meetings as previously discussed that, at the moment,
have transitioned into in-person meetings, workshops to help develop the skills needed to transition
into self-employment and begin the journey of starting a Youth Board within SYST to help existing
and new users of the services SYST has to offer.
Honestly, if you’re struggling to find the path you truly want, and you believe it’s working for yourself,
and with that, could really use some support getting to where you need, SYST will go above and
beyond to help you.
Sally-Ann’s Professional Housekeeping Service
SYST was recommended to me by my self employment adviser at Shrewsbury job centre.
I acted on this advice, contacted SYST and was invited to enrol. The support and encouragement from the outset from Jason Fullwood was outstanding. I was presented with the ASYST programme of mentoring, tutoring and support to enable me to develop my business to the next level and build my self-confidence.
I undertook the programme which consisted of modules delivered by business executives, one to one mentoring, it is a unique opportunity to have access to such informed tutors and mentors.
I have found that the encouragement and consistent support that I have been given has helped me become empowered to develop and ‘grow’ my business. I feel empowered that I can support myself financially and build a future after the effects of ‘Lockdown’
Thank you to all at SYST for your continuing support.
Eliz - Hair and Beauty
Hello, my name is Eliz Chausheva, I am a hairdresser from Bulgaria. I came because of work however my first job was working on the field in silence. I always wanted to work for myself but for one reason or another I just couldn’t do it. I heard about Shropshire Youth Support Trust from a friend and went to see them straight away. I always had the idea in my head but didn’t get the chance to achieve my goals at the beginning. I am so thankful to Richard and the team, I couldn’t achieve my dreams without them, I’ve been to many workshops and zoom sessions which are really helpful for someone who wants to start their own business. Thanks to them I met some great mentors, and I would like if I say that I wasn’t nervous about meeting the panel but they were so lovely and down to earth they always listened to my ideas and the most important thing is they believed in me. I couldn’t recommend Shropshire youth support trust enough.
“I can’t describe how happy you guys made me. After a very tough times in my life, that was the Christmas miracle I needed. Thank you for believing in me, in my dreams. I promise to make the most from your support and make my dreams come true. Thanks again there are really no words to describe how happy I am.”
Work Coach | Department for Work and Pensions | Shrewsbury Jobcentre
I just had a meeting with XXX, she is so enthusiastic about what you are helping her do! She has nothing but praise for you! Im really impressed with her Logo and her name. From the girl, I met 6 odd months ago who lacked direction and motivation to the girl she is now is so amazing! You really have helped to unlock her confidence and help her recognise her potential.
Just wanted to let you know you’re doing a fab job!!!
Jordan Stanley -The Manga Crate
I first heard about SYST through the Telford Growth Hub website which recommend SYST to any young people thinking of starting a business. I decided to do my own research and found the SYST website which was how I learnt more about what support SYST offers and how they can help me.
All the support which SYST has offered me has been incredibly valuable for me as a young adult and career trying to start my own business. I doubt I would have got this far with starting my own business without the core modules and support from all the staff at SYST.
All the core modules have been incredibly valuable and useful when starting my business. They have answered any questions I have had, cleared any doubts I may have had and given me the confidence I needed to start my business.
ASYST has definitely helped get my business started but they also offered support in my personal life. While I was starting my own business I also went through a large change in my personal life and ASYST offered their support during this time.
I’m Amy, a filmmaker based in Telford, Shropshire. I’ve got lots of experience in filmmaking I used to teach it but now I am actually doing it and after being a senior video producer for 2 years but have now decided to take it upon myself to start my own business.
As someone that was interested in starting a new business, I did a lot of google searching and came across SYST, it was local to me and had everything I wanted in terms of support and guidance so google bought me to SYST which I am really thankful for.
The main reason I came to SYST was that I needed guidance and some support, I needed someone to say, “this is probably the best thing to do, you might want to avoid doing this” and so for me, it was a mentor, someone that could sit with me, someone I could talk to and offload and get advice from and that was really useful.
With the ASYSTED business programme, I did a lot of sessions where I sat down and listen to a person involved in business and they gave advice, tips and support in different areas of starting your own business, but I also got one to one support, I did get the use of a room, I do film making so that was really handy for me. And also, I got the opportunity to present my business in front of a panel in the hope to get some funding so that was really, really exciting and looking forward to revisiting that.
In comparison to other support business’ I really felt that SYST cared about what I wanted to do and cared about me as an individual, it felt very one to one and very personal and really friendly so that’s why iv come back. I would absolutely recommend SYST to anyone that wants to start a business and needs a little bit more support pr loads of support, I think it’s tailored to an individual that needs that.
Jason Wright - Apples Gang
Hi, my name is Jason Wright, I am the creator of the Apples Gang featuring today and Charlotte. I’ve been working with the Shropshire Youth Support aka SYST who have been amazing in helping me to bring my characters to life and help me set up my business, my most amazing teacher and mentor Sarah, Jason Fullwood and Richard and Ed have all been so supportive in helping me get my characters launched off the ground and I would absolutely recommend them, thank you for all your support SYST.
They’ve helped boost my confidence by signing me up for business programmes and zoom meetings and whatnot, before them I wasn’t really that confident about doing meetings or doing self-tapes or anything but now, I am absolutely confident. I have been having interviews on the radio and in the newspaper, so I owe a lot to SYST, thank you very much.
My highlights have been the meetings with Sarah and Alex McCarthy as they have been so understanding and help slow the process down if I don’t understand anything, all they’ve really done is just been there and made sure I get the help where I need it and make sure I get the support when I need it.
I would most definitely recommend SYST for those that are trying to start a business, those thinking about doing a business or even just to work form because they are really helpful and they understand, they don’t have a go at you if you get something wrong, they try and help you build your confidence, build your knowledge.
If you want to google me or the Apples gang on social media, all you have to do is type in “Jason Wright cartoonist” on google and I’m usually the first one that comes up or you can just go onto Facebook and type in the Apples gang page which is a group where you can learn about all my new and upcoming albums, movies, shorts or anything I am doing. Or you can type me in on YouTube by typing in “Apples Gang by Wright.
Hey, Matthew here, I’m currently in sunny side Bondi Beach, Australia. I just want to give a big, huge shout out to SYST in Telford, Shropshire. Three years ago I started working with them to help me with my personal development and my business development, due to their help and their offices and staff they have helped me tremendously with just starting off my business development with my website, structure and they have also got me in contact with people who have been able to help me get my thinking straight, due to that I came to Australia afterwards and I’m living it up here with my brand new business, its been going for 3 years now and I have been able to help people out with their functionality and fitness performance essentially, due to their help I managed to get my plan and structure and allowed me to develop from there, they are great people to get along with, they’re easy to get along with and their offices are accessible and easy to use. Thank you, SYST.
Hi, I’m Nikki Lane, my business is Art by Nikki Lane, I am a self-taught artist born and raised here in Telford, Shropshire. I like to support local myself, I do a variety of art works which range from coffee and biro, portraiture, commissions and fantasy artworks in acrylic. Basically I like art, I’d really like to start selling art, I’d like to get into commercial markets with art and I’d like to do market stores, I’d like to sell big commissions and I just have a dream that I really need to chase and I’m still chasing it, I’ve been chasing it since I was a young kid, I’ve been growing my skills, my expertise, experimenting and basically, I’m not giving up. I first heard about SYST when I was hoping to start a business about 4 years ago then I got in touch with SYST, they were very helpful, they called me down and helped me with some workshops, got me into like-minded people, helped me set up my business which was successful up until covid.
I think with SYST, what was most valuable was the workshops, so sort of learning in my own time as opposed to with additional pressure and I could choose which workshops I went on and I chose them to suit my business.
The difference would be with the one-on-one support so I had someone I could message, or it was actually the communications so there was a lot of people keeping in touch and sort of making sure if there was something new that they’d let me know about it.
“Would you recommend SYST to anyone else?” Absolutely.
Jake Hand - Evo Sales
My name is Jake Hand, I started a company around 5 years ago called Evolution Sales and Marketing, In terms of what SYST are doing really well is definitely onboarding experts in certain areas who have got a lot of experience, who can share that information and that experience with you and with myself. I like the fact that there is always someone on hand if I had something I needed to find out or wanted to work with someone locally, it’s a really good way of networking and finding those people.
Just because of the ongoing different variations of training that they offer if you want to take part then you can and sometimes it’s been useful to do that, but I think mostly for me at the beginning it was the space that was really useful, having that little area I can come to and run my business from.
Yes, I would recommend SYST to other people, it’s useful for anything whether you are long in business or short in business. Whether you are just starting or you are hitting a speed bump or to have some sort of networking with people local to you, you know it’s alright networking online in that space but it might not be you know as personable as coming to somewhere like here and being able to meet with people and then put you in touch with other people that can help you on your journey and it may just be comforting to know that you can pick up the phone and they can probably guide you with some of the problems you might be facing.
Joel Smith - Shropshire Dungeon Master
My name is Joel Smith, I am the Shropshire Dungeon Master. I run games of dungeons and dragons and similar tabletop games for education and entertainment.
SYST have been great to me for making contacts, having resources available to me, having people who can advise available to me and basically whenever I need advice, suggestions, and ways to move forward.
I really do advise anybody who is young/trying to start their own business, to take the help that is offered because there are not many people out there who offer that amount of help and expect nothing in return except for maybe shouting them out on social media, by all means, do so and recommend them to other people because they’ve been really good for me and its something I do recommend honestly to anybody.
Cara Prince - UK Youth
SYST provide such a large variety of workshops that is beneficial not just for the young people but also for the Youth Sector. We are thrilled to have them as part of the UK Youth Movement. We have signposted organisations that are part of the movement to get further support who has always provided positive feedback. They are always responsive, impactful and definitely an organisation to recommend.
Fluff N Buff
Hi I’m Beth and I own a dog grooming salon in Calverley
I heard about SYST through the Job Centre
The biggest hurdle for me was not having the funds to pay for the dog grooming equipment
SYST have helped me so much with generating the funds to start my business and with teaching me on how to run a business successfully. They have been brilliant support.
I’ve enjoyed presenting my ideas and communicating with the team as their all so supportive and friendly.
SYST are different from other charities and organisations as I presented my business plan in front of a panel a lot like Dragons Den, they have brilliant mentoring which gives you plenty of support and advice where needed.
I think there should be more support on how to find these charities and organisations as a lot of people aren’t aware of them.
I would definitely recommend SYST and I am incredibly grateful for their support.
Self employment is great for me as a lone parent I can work around my daughter and gives me the freedom that I need.
Thank you SYST.
I chose to go into self employment as I was wanting to do a job that I enjoyed, and believed there was more to life than a 9-5 job that you dread going to everyday just for the sake of an income. Most people don't have the opportunity to take the risk and set up a business as they have responsibility's, while I am young and have the support I wanted to jump right in and do it. i started to struggle when I realised there is a lot of rules and regulations behind setting up a business, that's when I got referred to Syst by the job centre. They are a charity that helps young people from the age of 16-24 set up business with the support and funding, they have been great for me as they have been there when ever I was unsure on which steps to take next. They have enrolled me on to assisted business for the next 2 years and I will soon be going to panel. Where i will present my business plan and hopefully be able to take my business to the next level. I am enjoying working with them and I am excited too see where the next 2 years takes me. I would like to see more awareness being made on the opportunities that young people can have, this would inspire so many to follow their own dreams.
I'm a former ecologist with a passion for botany and mycology, I heard about SYST through my universal credit work coach.
I struggled a lot with financial and mental health issues not being able to find work or a place to live.
SYST has enabled me to start creating a career in something I am very passionate about as well as improve my social skills.
My favourite part of working with SYST has been getting to meet lots of new people with unique ideas that they are also passionate about.
SYST offers bespoke guidance for individuals and their situation rather than general advice.
Self-Employment is great as it allows you to focus on something you are passionate about and earn some money alongside doing something you enjoy.
I would like to see more grants and facilities available for young people wanting to start businesses in the community.
I would absolutely recommend SYST to anyone else.