tinsel, time and treats ..

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Last night, I was invited to attend a lovely event hosted by Net Impact London and the Hub Islington. Net Impact is a worldwide network of amazing individuals committed to using the power of business to improve the world and with diverse backgrounds brings together an eclectic mix of knowledge, experience and ideas. Islington was the pioneering hub of now 30 around the world that provides inspiring spaces for like-minded people to come together to work on their initiatives and cross-fertilize ideas. It was lovely to finally get the opportunity to visit Hub Islington – the place where it all started.

Using Christmas as a catalyst for giving and sharing, the purpose of the evening was to bring everyone together to mix, have fun and inspire ‘sharing’ over glass of mulled wine and mince pie.

To kick-start the evening, first up was Phillippa Banister, who recently joined Spots of Time. Spots of Time is an interesting idea based around making it easy for anyone to do fun bite-size activities to benefit others in their community. As Spots of time is based around 12 core activities, we were asked by Phillippa to split into 2 groups and play out two of these. We choose to “create a quiz” and “create a play list” and of course each had to have a ‘christmassy’ theme.

Following I gave a little introduction to Ecomodo describing how it works, some of reasons why lending everyday goods, skills and spaces is good for pocket, people and the planet and how we could re-invent christmas – together.

To uncover the hidden talents in the room, I ended with a wee game, asking each participant to take two stickies (one green, one orange) and offer a skill they would share and describe something they needed. The diversity of skills in the room was incredibly interesting covering professional services, hobbies and advice. As people mingled, several whoops came from the crowd as matches were made. And I’m still amazed that by simply making visible the things people are willing to share, how many new opportunities are sparked in my head – ideas that I hadn’t considered before.

After the party, I started to think about how contagious sharing is. Having spent the evening with a great bunch of engaging people, the very warmth and openness of the event must have left me with a distinct demeanor. As I made my way way home, it seemed to rub off on passers-by and I found myself in conversation with all sorts of people – a chap from Northolt on the tube, a homeless man outside Waterloo and a lady from Winchester. It just goes to show a little sharing can go a long way. Merry Christmas!

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