5 Q&A’s with Simon Brooker, Executive Editor of the REACH Local Magazine

5 Q&A’s with Simon Brooker, Executive Editor of REACH Local Magazine

The REACH local magazine is working with local businesses to build a more inclusive economy in Oxfordshire. Profits generated by the REACH Magazine are invested back into the community. The magazine provides micro-grants to cover start-up costs or free advertisement opportunities for excluded entrepreneurs to start their businesses. Find out more about how it works here.

Q) Tell us a bit about yourself

I am a passionate tech entrepreneur with lived experience, running businesses for ~10 years. I work as an Enterprise Coach for a national charity supporting entrepreneurs with lived experience as well as a director and founder of a Community Interest Company. I also run a web design agency.

Q) How would you summarise what the REACH local project is about?

REACH Local helps connect socially minded readers with socially minded businesses and excluded entrepreneurs in Oxfordshire. This project provides a platform for local businesses to support start-up business owners with lived experience, reach more customers, and shout from the rooftops that they support an inclusive economy. 

Q) What was the inspiration for starting this project?

As a response to the pandemic, PODTech Network CIC has supported 60 local excluded entrepreneurs to build websites for their brand. With our support, these micro-business owners where able to take their business online. We quickly realised that the groups we supported lacked the capacity and finances to effectively market their businesses and drive traffic and sales to their website and from this the REACH Local pathway was created. 

Q) What do you aim to achieve with this project?

REACH Local was established to provide socially sustainable digital and printed marketing opportunities to established businesses, excluded entrepreneurs, and non-profits in the Oxfordshire area. Alongside our magazine, we can offer digital business portfolios as an alternative to a website and a early-stage micro-grant pathway to support these start-ups.

Q) As Editor of REACH local magazine, what is your message to the readers of the REACH local magazine? 

Through businesses and consumers working together, we can create a more inclusive economy in Oxfordshire. Supporting local businesses and not-for-profits is the best way to redistribute wealth back into the community. 

We are looking for strategic partners, contributors and volunteers to help PODTech further the REACH Local project.

We would love to welcome article contributions. If you have an idea for an article, or want to get involved and learn more, visit www.reachlocal.org.uk or email ‘hello@reachlocal.org.uk’.