My instinct tells me that 2015 is going to be another uncertain and unpredictable year in every way. So, expect the unexpected – it always happens.
For the Mayoralty, I remain totally focused on my priorities, one of which is my charity work. My Come On In project aims to build a Citywide network of luncheon clubs/meet and greet groups/snack and chat sessions to tackle the dreadfully widespread incidence of loneliness and isolation amongst older people. So far, I have raised nearly £15,000 but my ambitions don’t stop there.
Also, I am proud to be supporting Forces Support, a charity that provides practical help (such as gardening and decorating) just when it is needed most for families who have lost a soldier in action. Having held the latest Prize Draw in The Parlour, it was an amazing experience telephoning the winners informing them they had won £1,000, £500, and £300 in cash!
The other priority is to engage with people by going out to meet them and inviting them into The Parlour. This is my “Be My Guest” programme whereby I host a tour, tea, and chat for schools (and other groups). No longer do I worry about a lack of interest as I have been amazed by the children’s enthusiasm for and curiosity about what they see and do. Please visit The Guildhall where I am displaying their drawings of “My Best Thing” of the visit. What I love about these events is that the children are so refreshing. They ask what they want and say what they think. A frequent question is about the value of the Mayoral silver and what would I spend the money on if I sold it! Nice idea at least.
One forthcoming highlight I am very excited about is the Mayor’s Charity Dinner on March 20th as this has been completely re-vamped and will be another first-ever event involving the whole community throughout Worcester. I’m also looking forward to the Civic Service on 8th February, and then visiting the army in north Germany when I’ll take part in a tank exercise. They’ve sort of promised that I can fire a few rounds and even possibly drive the tank.