Juliet was one of the women who won the 2014 most inspiring women of the year conducted by Daily Mail. She has given hope for more than thousand men and women, who, without her, would have faced the worst life. She is a mother of two, and she works in helping the former prisoners in bringing back their lives and to keep them away from re-offending the crime.
The organization was setup by her Husband Christopher and herself in the year 2006 and they named it “Startup”. She started his organization when she was inspired by the talk of her friend, who once asked her “how much money will the inmate want if they wanted to start their own business”, but Juliet did not want to give just the money, she also wanted to support and guide them. She wanted to help the ex-offenders in giving a new life and a job for them to work with. Among them, one lady named Sarah was helped by Juliet in bringing back her life with the help of a decorative business. Sarah had a small daughter when she was imprisoned. Sarah always says that her life would have been a disaster if she had not got the good fortune to meet Juliet.
Here is how Sarah was sent to prison and later how she got her life with the help of Juliet, Sarah had an appalling childhood and she suffered a lot in her childhood because of personal reasons. She was expelled from her school when she was 14 years old and was abandoned by her parents. She was pregnant by the age of 16, and had a daughter to look after. She was left alone with her daughter and had no one to help her. No one gave a job to a teenager who was already a mother, and as she was expelled from the school, she did not have any qualifications. She had no other choice when an offer of dealing drugs was put in front of her. She did the dealing and when her daughter was ten years old she was sentenced to four years of jail. Her time in jail was not easy, Sarah says that “Going to prison was my wakeup call and I gave drugs a wide birth”. During the counseling, Sarah met Juliet, which was the turning point of her life. Sarah had completed an Art level-A and she also had qualification in Maths and English. She also completed her courses in painting and decoration, as a result, the attention of startup fell on her, which was firmly working on the well-being of the ex-offenders. Juliet and her team helped Sarah form a business and buy equipments, and give her a hope in life. Sarah also said “without start up, I wouldn’t have been here. The help from them was invaluable, only qualification won’t help if you don’t have the right working tool or vehicles”.
More than 1000 ex-offenders are helped by startup, and from those, more than 250 former offenders are helping Juliet in the financial basis, while the rest of the ex-offenders are given the chance to re-think and do the courses which would help them fetch a job. All these are due to the tireless work of Juliet.
One among the many, who is helping Juliet, is Lloyd, a web designer, who would have lost everything if it weren’t for Juliet. He was also jailed for dealing with drugs and he was sentenced for three and a half years. But he was not jailed for selling the drugs rather her was imprisoned for getting addicted to cracks and heroine. He spent all his time in getting the drugs and injection or taking them in rather than doing a job when he was out. Hence he lost his partner and his daughter, but in jail Lloyd vowed to leave away drugs and he took up further educational courses. Even for Lloyd, meeting Sarah was the turning point of his life. He met her at an Entrepreneur Day, which Sarah arranged at Brixton Prison. Juliet had invited industry Heads to meet the inmates, who had business ideas. Everyone agreed that Lloyd deserved a better life, and Startup helped Lloyd to open a bank account, which is not easy if a person was in prison. Lloyd then started a business of his own and now he is a happy man. Lloyd also got his partner and his daughter, who is proud of her father. Lloyd was transformed by Sarah and her Startup team, he not only takes care of his business, but also helps the ex-offenders in making up their business too.
Juliet is working alone without the support of her husband, who died last July, leaving the two daughters in her hand. Christopher died of a massive hemorrhage, during a surgery to replace a valve in his abdominal aorta, which Christopher had postponed in order to take care of the company accounts. This was inspiring too. She says that many prisoners are trained with different courses in the prisons and they don’t get a job when they are released, and they tend to do the crime again. So she has devoted her life towards helping the ex-offenders in finding a new life and therefore the Startup was born. Sarah is alone with her two children, and she says that she will take Startup forward and help more Prisoners in finding their lives.
This is the inspirational story behind Juliet Hope, who is working hard to help the former prisoners, who have lost their lives. She does this for her husband too, who was also the proud owner of the organisation and now has left the responsibilities of transforming the men and the women who are imprisoned, into hopeful people, who believe in their lives. She conducts courses for the people and helps them find the job, and come forward in their life. Sarah is a life changer, for men and women who have lost their dignity, family, and hope. Sarah’s Life was really inspiring and redefining.