Hey everyone 🙂
It’s taken me a little while to write this blog post as it makes me feel a little sad! The reason I feel sad is that I have made the decision that RagHeroes won’t be continuing to make any of our wonderful RagHeroes rag dolls anymore!
In all honestly, whilst this makes me feel a little sad, I also feel a sense of relief and excitement. Whilst our rag dolls have been central to the RagHeroes business, and are the product that originally launched the business, we have learned so much and so much has changed over the past year. So I’ve had to re-assess where the business is at and the direction we should be heading in.
I have had offers from people to buy the business, but I’ve turned these down as I think there is lots of potential for the future of RagHeroes and we can still do lots of positive things for children and their parents for a long time to come.
So why do I feel sad?
Well, I guess I feel sad because I’m saying goodbye to what has been such a big part of my life for the last couple of years. I feel like I owe a lot to the rag dolls. Having the idea for RagHeroes was what lead me to meeting and pitching the business to Sir Richard Branson and Virgin Media Pioneers (VMP), and later becoming the North East (England) Ambassador for VMP too. I’ve met so many wonderful people and parents from around the country who have loved and bought the dolls for their children and also the Mums and business women who I’ve worked with to produce and promote the dolls. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank each and everyone of you for your ongoing support and commitment to me and the dolls!
So why am I relieved?
There are a few reasons for this. Firstly, manufacturing the dolls is extremely time consuming. The dolls are all hand made and then need to be safety tested and there is a A LOT of paperwork which goes alongside this. Being the main person to run this business has meant that I haven’t had the time to be able to market the dolls in the way I’d like to, and it has also taken me away from my main passion in life and the message behind the dolls. You see, when I first launched RagHeroes, the whole point was to create something which enabled little boys to express their emotions and to have a way to show their caring side thorough play. As I have a background in counselling and play therapy this was, and still is, something very close to my heart. However, I’ve found that when making the dolls I no longer have the time to think about this side of things as much which doesn’t feel right to me.
On a personal note, I’m also pregnant with my 3rd child right now and need to prioritise my time to allow me to stay at home with my children, as I always have done, and continue to bring in a monthly income. So, whilst I am sad, I also feel a sense of relief and excitement too and I know in my heart it is the right decision to make. It means that I can now concentrate on what really matters to me, and this is – creating more products for children whilst also being able to support parents via a range of new services we are developing – and this makes me very happy 🙂
So what do I have to be excited about?
Well……. I’m excited about the future of RagHeroes as, although we won’t be making any more dolls, we won’t cease to exist, just simply adapt and change for the better! This means I can do more of what I love and provide our parents with more of what they want…….information and support!
So what will the new RagHeroes look like?
Well, firstly our new mission is:
OUR MISSION: To develop a not for profit community blog that provides parents with support and encourages them to support one another. In turn we hope that parents will feel more able to help their children to express and nurture their emotions, increasing self-esteem, confidence and well-being.
The main changes will involve:
1. Publications. We aim to produce a range of free publications in the form of books, leaflets and guides, all of which will be available on our site.
2. Expert advice and support. This will mainly consist of specialised blog posts from a range of trained and experienced professionals sharing ideas around children’s emotional and mental well-being. We are also looking into doing live Q&A sessions on our Facebook page – (link to be posted soon).
3. We will develop a section on the website where parents can support each other directly.
4. Giveaways and reviews – we will be looking for parents to review all of what we are doing throughout the year and give parents (free of charge) any items we receive from companies for review 🙂
These changes are things that have been asked for or mentioned by parents over the last year. A lot of parents who have interacted with RagHeroes have known that behind the scenes we have a team of VERY qualified and experienced professionals who are more than capable of providing the above to a very high standard. It would be a shame not to utilise these skills and knowledge.
However, I can’t end this without mentioning the huge task of #projectragdoll that we have going on – our mission to build the worlds biggest rag doll! You can keep updated with this on the main page of this website, in the blog section ‘project rag doll’ and also in the photo and video galleries. We aim to finish the doll in Summer 2016 and then proceed full steam ahead with the new look and feel of this blog.
So, that’s it for now. It is with some sadness that I say a final goodbye to our dolls, but with a spring in my step knowing I am doing the right thing and excited by what the future holds.