Ella Dibb is the 25-year-old founder of Rose Nannies, a nanny agency that covers events as well as private babysitting – which she set up in July 2021. Ella spoke with Maxine Harrison about how she started

Maxine Harrison (MH): What is unique about Rose Nannies, and what inspired you to start it? 

Ella Dibb (ED): We predominantly provide event childcare. There are a lot of nanny agencies out there, but I think Rose Nannies is in that ‘event niche’. We are very flexible and have done events abroad, both corporate and private. I was a nanny for several years before starting the business and wanted to expand my reach. I felt passionate about ensuring the lack of childcare wasn’t a barrier to people attending events with their families. Rose Nannies helps families stay together! 

MH: Where does the name Rose Nannies come from?

ED: There are a few reasons why I chose the name Rose Nannies. When I first had the idea for the business, which was about six months before we launched, I lost my grandmother, who I was very close to. She had an increasingly strong faith towards the end of her life, and we had some amazing conversations about that. She loved roses; they were her favourite flower. When I had this lightbulb moment from God about starting the business, it was the night before we said goodbye to her at her funeral, and I felt so strongly that I wanted her to be connected to the business in some way. So that’s where Rose Nannies came from. 

I came into running Rose Nannies with practically zero business experience, so that was the most significant challenge

MH: What is your business/work background, and what was the transition to becoming self-employed like?

ED: I have a caring role background. I studied midwifery at Surrey University for almost two years. I never completed the degree, as it ended up not being for me. I began to realise that to do my job well, I would have to grow a thicker skin. The toll the job was already taking on my mental and physical health eventually outweighed the positive aspects. It is a special job though, and I have vast amounts of respect for those able to find the balance and make it work! 

I enjoyed the caring role of midwifery. Working with mums and babies is very similar to what I do now, just in a different capacity. After midwifery, I went straight into being a nanny for a family I’ve been very close to for six years. I still nanny with them part-time. I loved being a nanny, caring for the children, organising their days and meals, and the flexibility that it gave me to plan my weeks and activities with the children I look after. Working with the family, I transitioned into starting the business, and I slowly cut down on the other nannying I was doing.  


© @lexiesapsford_photography

MH: What does the business look like today?

ED: We have a team of approximately 35 freelance nannies across London, Surrey and Hampshire. I’m based in and run the business from south-west London (Earlsfield), but spend a chunk of the week in Surrey with close friends, nannying part-time for them alongside running Rose Nannies. We ensure our team share our core values: safety, kindness and fun! We guarantee a friendly and experienced face who will instantly put families at ease and provide the most positive experience for little ones. 

When employing our nannies, I make sure they have a thorough vetting process before registering on the team, ensuring they reflect our values and passions and, therefore, provide the kindest, highest standards of care. All of our team have, at the very least, an enhanced DBS certificate and paediatric first-aid training, and many have further qualifications on top of this.

MH: You mentioned the faith of your grandmother; when did you become a Christian?

ED: I became a Christian at university in 2016, after a friend invited me to church. I had grown up in a non-Christian home and only gone to church at Christmas or when visiting my grandparents in Cheshire. The first time I went to church, the pastor had a particular prophecy for the difficult situation I was living through. Although I didn’t realise it at the time, God was speaking directly to my pain in the most compassionate way. Following that experience, I was curious to continue exploring church. My faith grew quickly as Sunday services, home groups, serving on teams and my church community became a huge part of my life. Within a year or two, I was baptised and worked as a children’s intern at my church. 

MH: What kind of struggles have you faced in your business?

ED: Going self-employed has been one of the biggest challenges. Because my work is quite seasonal, I have to trust God that provision will be there when there is less work. I love the flexibility of being self-employed. I came into running Rose Nannies with practically zero business experience, so that was the most significant challenge. But it’s been such a fantastic experience and challenge to prove that I can do it. 

Because my work is quite seasonal, I have to trust God that provision will be there when there is less work

MH: How does your faith influence your business?

ED: Apart from leaning on God in the more unstable seasons, I’ve been exploring how to merge my faith and business better. I have my church life, community and all those amazing people, and then I have the company. It overlaps somewhat because many of our nannies are people I’ve met at church, which is amazing and a blessing. When looking after people’s kids, you have to build trust quickly. I’m keen to work out how to indirectly bring the good news of Jesus into my work when we build intimate relationships with people. I’m navigating how to go about doing that at the moment. 


© @digital_by_vanessa

MH: What would you say to another Christian woman thinking of starting her own business? 

ED: If you’ve got the drive, idea and passion for it, and you feel as though you’ve prayed about it and God is behind it, then go for it. It won’t be easy, but I don’t think anything from which you gain that much knowledge and life experience will ever be easy. So be prepared for setbacks, but recognise it will deepen your relationship with God too. 

MH: Where do you want to take your business in the future?

ED: There are so many directions. I would love to see countrywide branches opening to support families across the country, not just within the areas we currently work in. I’d like to see more opportunities for us to show our love and friendly hearts on a grander scale. It would also be an absolute dream to be able to use Rose Nannies’ skills and team to start a charity within the nannying sector, being able to offer our support to families who otherwise wouldn’t be able to receive this kind of support or care.

To find out more visit rosenannies.com  and find them on social at @rosenannies