Name: Henriette, but my family and friends just call me “Jette” (pronounced: ‘ye-ta).

AGE: 33 WHAT I DO: I run a community project called Free Cakes for Kids.

It’s a service to families who find it difficult to provide a birthday cake for their child.

You can learn more about us at

In my day job I am a partner in a small company called Grange Partnership, where we develop and conduct training for all kinds of businesses.

WHERE I LIVE: In a two-bedroom flat off St Clement’s, right next to the Angel & Greyhound meadow.

WHO I LOVE: My husband Malte, of course. What else could I write?

HAPPIEST YEAR: 1998 – The year I started living on my own and gained independence: what a happy moment!

DARKEST MOMENT: I have a soft spot for dark chocolate. So finding a bar with at least 70 per cent cocoa solids in the kitchen cupboard can be a very dark moment!

PROUDEST BOAST: There were many moments last year when I felt really proud of our team.

A highlight was certainly when our former volunteer co-ordinator Steph Griggs-Trevarthen received an award for her work with Free Cakes for Kids Oxford.

BIGGEST REGRET: I find it hard to be regretful. When something goes wrong, I try my best to learn from it.


I fear this is the same as my “darkest moment”.

LESSON LEARNED When we started out about three years ago, I thought I could set up the charity more or less like a business.

I had been working for four months on my own and not baked a single cake.

That was when I realised that a community group needs a very different approach. In our case, it is simply “find a family and bake a cake”.

DULLEST JOB Ironing my blouses for work. I do not particularly like to wear them, but haven’t found a way to get around it.

GREATEST SHAME: Well, I guess it would only become one if I announced it in the Oxford Mail?

LIFE-LONG HERO: My dear Auntie Ressel, who taught me all the important things in life and makes the greatest pancakes ever.

OLDEST FRIEND: That’s probably a toy mouse I received as a child. It has been around from day one, and I still keep it at home as a talisman.

WIDEST SMILE: Every time I look at the map with all the local Free Cakes for Kids groups in the UK, I have to smile.

When we started, it was only us. But now there are more than 40 groups across the UK with new ones being added every week.

And while we sometimes struggle to keep pace, it is great to see the idea spreading – one cake at a time.

FAVOURITE DREAM: My dream would be to come to Oxford in 100 years and see Free Cakes for Kids and all the other wonderful community groups still alive and kicking.