Pioneering Newcastle based app Safer Date wins StartUp award

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Elaine Parker founded the app to keep criminals away after experiencing abuse herself

Pioneering Newcastle based dating app Safer Date has been named one of the region’s most exciting businesses.

Safer Date was acknowledged by the StartUp Awards National Series, a new awards programme launched to recognise startups across the UK.

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In 2020, when most of the world was shutting down, more than 400,000 startups were set up in Britain, with similar increases seen in other European countries.

There was stiff competition with over 2,500 applications received in response to the Startup Awards National Series’ first-ever call for entries.

Elaine Parker, CEO of Safer Date said: “I’m absolutely thrilled to be announced as a finalist in these StartUp Awards.

“Safer Date is a prime example of how tech can be used for good and it was set up to protect people from online predators.

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“It is amazing to be recognised for the hard work we’re doing, and to be a finalist considering the stiff competition…..it’s really exciting.”

Safer Date works to provide a secure online dating platform.

It is the only dating app in the world to make ID and criminal background checks mandatory for users.

Elaine founded the app after a harrowing experience with an abusive partner herself.

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Safer Date ought off stiff competition at the new awardsSafer Date ought off stiff competition at the new awards
Safer Date ought off stiff competition at the new awards

She said: “I decided to try online dating myself in 2016, a few of my friends had success on there.

“I tried one app which was free and thought I had nothing to lose.

“I chatted with a few people and then met this guy, it was great. Second date the day after, third date a few days after that.

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“He ended up moving in with me and my son, we ended up getting engaged eight months later and the night of the engagement party he changed and became the absolute monster.

“He put me through domestic abuse for months, his alcohol abuse was horrendous, that turned to sexual assault and then rape.”

Professor Dylan Jones-Evans OBE, the creator of the StartUp Awards National Series, said: “New firms are important for generating economic prosperity, employment opportunities and innovation.

“Since 2016, the Wales StartUp Awards have celebrated this amazing annual contribution to our economy by entrepreneurs and the impact they have on communities across the nation.

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“Given the sheer volume of phenomenal startups we’ve heard from since then, as well as the huge post-pandemic shift in people’s desires to take their career in a new direction and set up a business against the odds, we felt it was the right time to take the programme nationwide.

“We’ve been blown away by the standard of entries in this first year and truly look forward to crowning the winners in June.”

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