A celebration to mark the 20th anniversary of the conference and events bureau for Cambridge and the region was attended by more than 90 people, raising £2,160 for a mental health charity.
Meet Cambridge held its fundraising event at Kettle’s Yard on Wednesday 7th November, supported by representatives from regional companies and organisations who came along to recognise the milestone. They also helped to raise valuable funds for Cambridgeshire, Peterborough and South Lincolnshire (CPSL) Mind which focuses on support for those with mental health issues.
After being welcomed by Meet Cambridge Director Kelly Vickers, guests heard the keynote speech given by best-selling author and Telegraph journalist Bryony Gordon.
Kelly said: “Twenty years is an important milestone. Back then the team of two were handling just 20 event enquiries per week by fax; today we are dealing with 20 enquiries per hour. We now work with 75 partners, including Colleges, hotels and other conference and meeting venues, not just in Cambridge, but across the region too. These days, when most of our communications are virtual, face-to-face meetings are more important than ever.
“So we wanted to celebrate but also to raise awareness and funds for CPSL Mind, our designated charity. A huge thank you to all our sponsors for the event whose generosity means that 100% of the proceeds from ticket sales will go directly to CPSL Mind. We are particularly delighted that Bryony Gordon has agreed to come and speak to us as a prominent advocate for mental health.”
In her keynote speech, Bryony Gordon spoke candidly about her own struggles with OCD, depression and anxiety and some of the initiatives she has instigated to help those with mental health problems, including setting up Mental Health Mates and getting involved in the Heads Together Campaign, championed by members of the Royal Family.
She said: “One in four people will suffer from a mental health issue during their lifetime and we need to work together to remove the stigma and encourage initiatives which can help people realise they are not alone. I am a great supporter of Mind and all it does to raise awareness of mental health; it’s great to hear about the services its local branches offer to those facing these challenges – I’m pleased that this event is raising funds to help this cause.”
Aly Anderson CEO, CPSL Mind added: “We are thrilled to receive such a fantastic donation from Meet Cambridge. The event was an enormous success, tickets were sold out and the raffle prizes were amazing. It is great to see a local company not only raising money for our work but also raising awareness of the subject of mental health. This donation will be used to provide vital direct services to the local people of Cambridgeshire, Peterborough and South Lincolnshire who are recovering from mental health challenges. A huge thank you to all the team at Meet Cambridge for organising such an amazing event.”
Guests enjoyed a Pinkster Gin cocktail on arrival, exclusive access to the Kettle's Yard exhibits, drinks and canapes from CDC Events and also the chance to win one of a list of exceptional experiences in the charity raffle.
CPSL Mind’s mission is to provide effective, accessible, co-produced services across Cambridgeshire, Peterborough and South Lincolnshire that support those recovering from mental health challenges, promote positive mental health and tackle mental health-related stigma and discrimination within our communities.
The Meet Cambridge team with Bryony Gordon, left to right: Sahar Iravani, Laura Rayyan, Judith Sloane, Bryony Gordon keynote speaker, Kelly Vickers, Leah Gibson and Anita Macdonald.