Baskets Galore spent both an informative and lovely morning in the Clandeboye Lodge Hotel, having a delicious charity breakfast courtesy of the Rotary Club of Bangor. The Rotary Club encourage both guests and members to get involved in their projects to provide support for both local and international charities through fundraising. Their volunteers use their skills, time and resources, to help make a positive difference to the lives of the others. I find it important that the Rotary club are using events like this to ask businesses to help support local charities. Likewise it is very refreshing that an organisation are continually working hard together to establish good community relations.
Our table had some of the youngest people in attendance, with employee role's including social media manager and graphic designer. Everyone from Baskets Galore thoroughly enjoyed the event, I was very pleased to hear from Bangor's Rotary Club President Ian Wilson that they have acknowledged both the importance and the advantages to using social media platforms to promote charity campaigns. The most famous example of the effect this type of campaign can have is the Macmillan's Ice Bucket Challenge.
Once we had filled our stomachs with a scrumptious cooked breakfast and copious cups of coffee, the guest speaker, Mr Lembit Opik delivered a very entertaining speech, which was both witty and serious where appropriate. He spoke of his fond memories from growing up in Bangor and he gave us an overview of his extensive range of different careers including his political work in Northern Ireland and having the honour to work with Mo Mowlam. He also made jokes at his own realty TV appearances. Although everyone will come away from this event, each remembering something different, at Baskets Galore we all will remember Lembit's leaving message and we aim to follow this simple rule. He ended with saying that we only have one life, and we shouldn't go through life being a Ghost but that we should be a Spirit.
As this event was referred to as one of the most important in the Rotary Club's calendar I wanted to know what the age minority in attendance thought of the event. Baskets Galore's observations from their 20 something workforce and 30 something management team:
- Roma - I found Lembit's speech very inspirational, we have lots in common, both from Baltic and both lived in Bristol, I will definitely not be a Ghost.
- Shannon - Lembit said that everyone in attendance must be proactive because they were there, it is important that established businesses are there but I believe that more proactive young business people should also attend these events.
- Kate - I found that the speeches were very engaging, they woke me up, it is surprising to have such a charismatic talent like these in Bangor.
- Laura - I enjoyed the message from both the Rotary Club's President's and Lembit's speech about making the effort to make a positive impact on the world in the short space of time that we are here. The rotary club should maybe think about involving the younger generations as I felt we were by far the youngest in the audience by a large margin.
- Neil - The Rotary Club always has very interesting speakers at theses events and its nice to get an insight into who the people are aswell. Lembit was eloquent, witty and personable, but his message of not wishing to go through like like a ghost resonates strongly. Some nice anecdotes about his career as a politician with the Liberal Democrat Party. Always very difficult to perform a speech at 8am, but our thanks to all at the Rotary Club for organising such a great event and inviting Baskets Galore.
Events like these are important to the local communities and we were there today to support and sponsor the following charities, NICFC's Daisy Lodge, Northern Ireland Hospice and the Rotary Foundation.