Manjit Wolstenholme was born in India and went to school in Wolverhampton. Her life story was one of building the skills and perseverance to break down barriers to succeed in business. Manjit became the youngest woman to head an investment bank in London and went on to become the first woman from an ethnic minority background to chair a FTSE 100 company.
In addition to her local knowledge of Bradford, Manjit recognised the issues and challenges facing young people as a result of her own experiences and believed passionately in being able to do something to address this. During her time with Provident Financial Group, she was a key supporter of the Group’s Social Impact Programme which addresses issues around social mobility across the UK and Ireland and supported the company’s ongoing investment into those communities. She believed that no-one should be denied the chance to achieve their true potential as a result of their background or where they live.
You can read more about Manjit’s story here.
Meet The Family
Q: What does Bradford mean to you?
A: Bradford is a place which Manjit held very close to her heart as both Chair and CEO of Provident Financial Group. It’s a multicultural centre with a wonderful heritage and cultural history, yet this is entwined with social issues which Manjit and her family could identify with.
Q: Tell us a bit more about the Manjit Wolstenholme Fund?
A: The Manjit Wolstenholme Fund has been established to honour the memory of Manjit and support children and young people in disadvantaged areas of Bradford District to achieve their potential through educational and aspirational opportunities. Manjit’s own experiences meant she believed passionately that no-one should be denied the chance to achieve their true potential as a result of their background or where they live.
Q: What do you hope you will achieve through the Manjit Wolstenholme Fund?
A: We are hoping to provide some young people from a wide range of socio-economic and ethnic backgrounds with a helping hand; even a little bit of support might make a big difference and enable them to take opportunities to potentially follow in Manjit’s footsteps. With these examples, we want to inspire other young people in the future. Ultimately, through these contributions, the fund can improve people’s lives.
Q: Why do you think it’s important to raise the aspirations of young people?
A: Everybody deserves an opportunity in life, whatever social circumstances they are born into. Manjit was born in India, brought up on a council estate but, through belief and aspiration, became the Head of an investment bank. There are young people out there with this potential and Manjit’s story could inspire them.
With support from Provident Financial, Manjit’s family have established the Manjit Wolstenholme Fund to honour her memory and to help young people across the Bradford District. Here they talk about why this fund is important to them and what they hope to achieve.