1. Why partner with StepUp Shoeshine?

The list of reasons is endless, but by allowing us to use a space in your workplace or publicly-accessible area, you are directly enabling us to lift people out of unemployment, restore their dignity and empower them to rebuild their lives. We operate in Glasgow, in large city centre offices known for their smartly-attired professionals and appreciation of great customer service. We arrive in smart uniforms, complimenting the professional ethos of your workplace.  We’d love to move into transport hubs, too!  We now have a track record of meeting these high standards. BBC1’s The One Show covered our story: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uUOw_w6BxoQ&t=16s

2. How much does it cost?

In the same way as professional shoeshine services in airports, for example, there is an option for each client to pay for the service. We have calculated that the salary costs of shoe valeters can be covered if enough clients sign up at our reasonable rates, so that we can provide a professional service without the “London price tag”.  For a personal subscription of £10 per month to our loyalty programme, up to 3 pairs of your shoes/ boots can be polished as a drop-off/ collection service when we visit your office.  This represents great value while ensuring that we can guarantee cash-flow and therefore stability for our team to move them from training and work experience to earning a salary as a shoe valeter.  Give Isabella a call on 07948 184063 to discuss the minimum number of colleagues to sign up per site to allow us to launch the loyalty programme in your workplace… Far fewer than you probably think!

3. How often would StepUp Shoeshine visit?

Depending on the business size, and moreover demand and support in your building, we can negotiate a session from a few hours to a full day on a weekly, fortnightly or monthly basis. Knowing that we will be on site on given dates means that our service is anticipated and your staff can plan ahead. Trust will grow through this kind of relationship-building. Our drop-off and collection service is also ideal for spare/ family members’ shoes. Quality time at home at precious. Let us step in!  Alternatively, we can offer a one-off special, “feel-good” event for you to reward employees.  This is not just for men…. We love taking good care of ladies’ leather boots!

4. What happens to the profits?

StepUp Shoeshine CIC is a registered Community Interest Company (SC517652) with all profits reinvested back into the business to further its aims. There are no shareholders and an asset lock is in place. Companies who engage our socially responsible services are directly helping to support people who have been encountering difficulties in finding alternative work.  This can only continue if we have enough income to pay their wages.  Especially during the early days, when even the best profit-driven businesses are not profitable, we want to lift people from potentially chaotic lifestyles into steady work.  If you can contribute towards our stability by donating towards their wages, please click on www.stepupshoeshine.com/donate .

5. Who works for StepUp Shoeshine?

Life can throw a curveball at anyone, and being out of work can have a devastating effect on a person’s health, wellbeing and ability to support their household. We want to give a chance to people and they have to decide whether or not it is worth the effort. Our emphasis is on partnering with agencies that help vulnerable people, such as those with a conviction, suffering from social exclusion or have previously faced multiple barriers. A package of nurture, training, work experience and employment can be the next step to realise their potential. Everyone has a story and we’re interested in writing the next chapter with our team members. Ethical, uplifting employment can be hard to find, especially if someone is already feeling the impact of being out of work.  In December 2016, the Founder won a social entrepreneur’s award from UnLtd to enable her to be paid a modest salary while developing and growing the business, having worked hands-on on a voluntary basis for the previous 18 months. None of the other directors is remunerated for their support of StepUp Shoeshine CIC.  We are currently applying for funding for a team leader to mentor the next team of shoe valeters.  Watch this space for updates!