Mid Essex Health & Wellbeing Showcase
“Wow!” said Sir Thomas Hughes-Hallett as he entered the marketplace of voluntary and community organisations who work to provide health and wellbeing support to people in Mid Essex. Thanks to everyone’s enthusiasm and willingness to co-operate the first Mid Essex Showcase on 18 November 2013 was, quite simply, buzzing!
154 people signed in on the day and we squeezed 30 exhibitors into the room, with Healthwatch, 5 health & social care providers and the City and Maldon District councils exhibiting in the break out area. Thanks go to Sir Thomas and Dr Lisa Harrod-Rothwell for spending the afternoon with us and endeavouring to speak to everyone in the room. And to representatives from Farleigh Hospice, Broomfield Hospital, Stroke Association, Provide, EssexCares and Dr Andries Bisdee for stepping up to the microphone during the afternoon to share stories of amazing voluntary action in Mid Essex.
We worked collaboratively with Maldon CVS and Braintree DVSA, and for the very first time with a wide range of health providers. We went ahead with open minds, key outcomes to achieve but no workshop agendas (!) and we were overwhelmed by the response to the day and positive feedback received:
“I was very impressed by the number of people who attended and the calibre. As Healthwatch Essex we were very proud to be part of the event.”
“It was a great opportunity to learn about a few of the local voluntary and community sector organisations that operate in Mid Essex and better understand what they do and how they make a difference in local communities.”
“It was great! … made good contacts – really worthwhile.”
“Congratulations and thank you for the brilliant Mid Essex Showcase on Monday.”
“What a fantastic day yesterday was! So much energy in the room and had some fantastic conversations with colleagues from the voluntary sector.”
But I think the best comment for the day was from one of the wonderful volunteers who supported the event who said he enjoyed the day very much, being able to get involved behind the scenes and inside the Council Chamber: “The best bit was being in that room knowing that all of us as people and organisations are here to care.”
We wouldn’t be able to hold events of this scale without help and support from partners and providers, Mid Essex CCG, Chelmsford City Council and volunteers Alan, Deborah, Hugh, Pete, Jenny, Pat, Lynne and Sally. Thanks go to all.