Mursal Hedayat MBE

CEO at Chatterbox

Mursal Hedayat MBE

Mursal Hedayat MBE accepted the Barclays Woman in the Community Award for her work with Chatterbox, an online language school that trains and employs refugees as teachers. Having been forced to take refuge in the United Kingdom from Afghanistan with her mother, a polyglot engineer, Mursal founded Chatterbox to harness the untapped talent of refugees and other marginalised professionals. The platform closes the gap between refugees with qualifications and the labour market, creating pathways into professional careers for displaced professionals.

Mursal Hedayat said “It’s an honour to win this prize, especially at a time when the contribution of immigrants in the UK has never been more keenly felt. I’m extremely proud of the refugees and other talented professionals from marginalised backgrounds who, against all odds, are making a significant contribution to the world economy through Chatterbox. By utilising our technology and their own language skills, they are improving intercultural understanding at some of the world’s biggest companies while transforming perceptions of what great talent looks like.”

Jes Staley, Barclays Group CEO said: “At Barclays, we know that we make a bigger difference for our customers and our communities when we build a supportive and inclusive culture for everyone. We are proud to support these awards which celebrate extraordinary women and their remarkable contributions to society. The last 18 months have been particularly difficult for our communities, requiring us all to work together to help those most in need. We applaud our winner, Mursal Hedayat MBE, and all the outstanding nominees for their efforts in supporting those facing hardship in our communities.”