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Luminary Bakery

East London women’s group and Hackney bakery recognised for mentor project.

An East London women’s organisation and Hackney bakery have been recognised for the support and mentoring they provide to vulnerable women.

Women’s organisation Soroptimist East London have helped many women forge a more secure future, getting many back into employment or education with help from Stoke Newington social-enterprise, Luminary Bakery.

That is why the East London group was the Best Practice Award in the category Prosperity by SIGBI (Soroptimist International of Great Britain and Ireland), a global volunteer movement working to transform the lives of women and girls in 124 countries.

Alice Williams of the Luminary Bakery said: “Luminary are really grateful to the Soroptimist volunteers who have been mentoring our graduates from our training programs, really investing in their personal and professional development and making them feel a part of community.”

Halimot Ogunnaike of Haliberry Cakes and Catering, was a student of the Luminary Bakery and now runs her own business. She told the Gazette: “My Soroptimist mentor did a wonderful job.

She’s like my mum and a mentor at the same time. She’s been one of the pillars of my business helping me along the way.”

Halimot has not only set up her own baking business, she has also become a member of Soroptimist East London herself.

She added: “I want to give back to the community, to share my skills and offer what I can. Just a week ago I gave a charity baking class to raise money for The Ideas Partnership, our partner in Kosovo.

Alison Charles, a member of Soroptimist East London who lead the Luminary mentoring project said Soroptimist East London chose to mentor women trainees at Luminary Bakery because it makes a “real difference” to the lives of the women it supports.

She added: “Working with Luminary feels like working with a family, they care deeply for all the women they support. It is an honour to work alongside them.”

Soroptimist East London meets every month at various locations in East London or on-line. Click here or get in touch at:

Learn more about Halimot’s cakes and attend her online baking classes click here …

The above article by Holly Chant first published on in Nov, 2020.