National award for Enfield entrepreneur

Emma Rigby recognised for setting up network of doorstep deliveries during pandemic

O2 Everyday Heroes Award winners Yasin El Ashrafi (left) and Emma Rigby (right) joined by judge Kelly Hoppen (credit David Parry/PA Wire)
O2 Everyday Heroes Award winners Yasin El Ashrafi (left) and Emma Rigby (right) joined by judge Kelly Hoppen (credit David Parry/PA Wire)

A social entrepreneur from Enfield has been named the winner of a national competition to celebrate “everyday heroes”.

Emma Ribgy, founder of community interest company Love Your Doorstep, is one of two winners of the O2 Everyday Heroes Awards 2021 after being picked by both a public vote and a panel of judges.

Love Your Doorstep recently celebrated its tenth anniversary and has launched several community initiatives in Enfield over the years, including a school patrol that helps protect children on their way home.

But it was Emma’s efforts during the pandemic that caught the eye of the awards panel, after she used her extensive local network of volunteers, neighbours, charities and businesses to manage and organise an “immense operation” which saw hundreds of food packages, meals and medication delivered by more than 600 volunteers recruited by Love Your Doorstep in the early weeks of the Covid-19 lockdown last year.

The O2 Everyday Heroes Awards saw hundreds of members of the public nominate deserving small businesses and enterprises that had “gone the extra mile” by adapting their businesses to support local communities.

Alongside fellow national winner Yasin El Ashrafi, who supports young musicians and creatives in the Midlands through his business HQ CAN, Emma was presented with a £5,000 cash prize from renowned designer and entrepreneur Kelly Hoppen.

The former Dragon’s Den star, who was on the judging panel, said: “It’s been a real joy hearing the stories of these amazing business leaders who are so committed to supporting the community around them. The fact there are two joint winners shows just how difficult judging the superb finalists’ entries was!

“Emma couldn’t be more worthy of the honour. Her tenacity, drive and passion is clear. She was determined in her mission to keep the community supplied with food and medication, and what was especially great to hear was the sheer volume of volunteers who came forward at such speed.”

Emma said the prize money will be reinvested by Love Your Doorstep to help them continue to support the Enfield community. She said: “It’s been a real team effort to keep things going over the past 18 months and it’s reaffirmed the sense of community and connection we’ve all needed to lean on at some point.

“I’m delighted to have received this recognition.”

Jo Bertram, a managing director at Virgin Media O2 and judge for the awards, said: “Hearing from all of the small businesses and learning about the sheer level of support and joy they brought their communities over the last year has been truly inspiring. Small business leaders really are the backbone of local communities around the country so to hear of their determination and motivation to keep serving their local customers is heart-warming.

“Emma and Yasin are examples of individuals who have gone above and beyond the call of duty, utilising technology in order to ensure they’re offering the best level of support. They show how a sense of community really has been a lifeline for many of us.”

For more information about Love Your Doorstep:
Visit
loveyourdoorstep.co.uk

To find out more about the O2 Everyday Heroes Awards:
Visit
o2.co.uk/business/everyday-heroes