Helping BIG staff become social reporters


Today I’m in Wickford, Essex, reporting at an event organised by the Big Lottery Fund with the local MP Mark Francois and some 130 local organisations who want to know more about how to get Lottery Funding, and also make most effective use of any funds they do receive.

On this occasion I’m helping BIG regional staff do some reporting themselves, led by Catherine Kimberley. It’s a great opportunity to round-off the work John Popham and I have been doing with BIG on this blog. We’ve been exploring how BIG can become more than a funder – and making their events more sociable is one way.

Today’s event was organised because the MP was keen to make sure his constituents had the best possible briefing on funding opportunities, invited BIG chief executive and others to come along and explain how to achieve that.

BIG have a first blog post up about the event, and @peterwanless has already started tweeting. As John reports here, Peter leads from the front in adopting social media.

Catherine and her team are set to record opening speeches, and do some interviews and tweeting during the day. I may experiment with live streaming from my iPad, as well as helping Catherine. I’ll post more here, and BIG will be reporting on their blog.
The twitter hashtag is #wick112, and you can see the twitter stream here.

Sara Betsworth, head of East of England Big Lottery Fund, introduces the event

Mark Francois MP explains why the event was organised – and what he hopes will follow

Big Lottery Fund chief executive Peter Wanless explains funding opportunities

Mark Francois MP and Peter Wanless CEO of Big Lottery Fund reflect on the first half of the event, and agree it is working well.

Catherine Kimberley, of Big Lottery Fund East of England, practises some social reporting in an interview with to Sarah Fogarty and Laura Stammers of Crossroads Care Essex.

Pam McCarthy and Shelley Hall, who work for the local Council for Voluntary Service, explain the funding situation for groups and how they can help.

Brian Marsden-Carleton of the Hullbridge Village Community Group explains the practicality of engaging people in local planning and development issues.

I talked to Barry Langmead, who is organising Wickford Carnival, about how digital media might help engage more people in local fairs and festivals.

Update: Catherine has posted her report of the day on the BIG Blog: Being social in Wickford

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