Last week it was out annual People’s Conference, at our Lilliputs site in Hornchurch. It is a day to celebrate each and every person and is by far the highlight of the year for most people at CMG.
Apart from the sweltering temperatures, it was a great success, with the most brilliant and inspiring atmosphere. At CMG we do our upmost to ensure the people we support are given the opportunity to lead the most fulfilling and enriched lives as possible. A part of achieving this is by enabling the people we support to have access to a range of different, unique and innovative experiences, this includes many of the CMG annual events.
This event is one of the most significant events in the CMG calendar and is a crucial opportunity for us to listen and engage with the fantastic individuals we serve. It was also an excellent chance to see so many of the individuals, and the dedicated staff members, joining together to celebrate another brilliant year, and have such a great time.
The day, which is an annual event in the CMG calendar, is aimed at engaging with and listening to the views of the individuals they support, and celebrating and recognising each and every person. The day was kick-started with a presentation from Campaign 4 Change (C4C), which is a group of self-advocates which CMG supports, who campaign about various topics relating to them and others with learning disabilities.
They gave a presentation on their new #MindYourLanguage – a campaign aimed at raising awareness of how staff, health professionals and members of social should speak to people with learning disabilities. They also gave a presentation on hate crime, and how people with learning disabilities should not have to experience such things. Two members of C4C have been supported to create a video on hate crime – raising awareness and tackling the consistent rise year on year of hate crime towards people with learning disabilities in the UK.
This was followed on by the notorious ‘CMG’s got Talent’, which is always the most entertaining part of the day. There were 16 different acts, this included a dance group, and people singing: Tom Jones, Bruno Mars, Elton John, Mamma Mia and more. Stevie, from Brighton sang his own song that he wrote and produced with the help of his key worker. It was amazing, such powerful lyrics.
Throughout the day there were various different things keeping people entertained. The excellent banana stilts band did a fantastic job as usual. I’m amazed at how many songs they are able to sing on demand. The song which went down the best was ‘Go Go Power Rangers’ lots of people were up and doing the moves. My personal favourite was a rendition of ‘I would walk 3000 miles’ with a Scottish/Russian spin to it.
As always the circus performers were a great hit, showing off their skills with a great performance and workshops so people could get involved and learn how to use the different equipment. I saw quite a few of managers giving it ago too, and failing if I have to tell the truth.
In the main hall there were makeup and tattoo stations, activity corner, cake and art competition and the animal area. When people had had enough of the hustle and bustle of the day, they could relax in the quiet room.
A number of people we support had their own stalls selling products they had made themselves, this included cakes, canvases, cards, mugs and T-shirts this was a product of our CMG’s Dragons’ Den which was held back in June. It’s great to see these businesses flourishing.
Everyone appreciated the cool refreshments from The Mr Whippy Ice Cream van. It was so popular, Lilli our events manager had to tell the driver to close his window and drive away before he got completely mobbed!
The day was wrapped up with the ‘Open Mic’ session and the prize ceremony. We often have quite a few big announcements such as marriage proposals, birthdays, declaration of love, and divorces. This year was no different, one gentleman from Brighton proposed to his girlfriend, she said yes!
It was a fantastic day and I would like to say a huge congratulations to everyone who made this possible.
I would like to finish this blog with a quote from our Events & Marketing Manager, Lilli Murdoch.
“I feel very honoured to have been part of this amazing event, and to see the people we support having such a great time and being able to express themselves. Role on next year!”
Please head over to our Facebook page to see more photos from the day: https://www.facebook.com/CareManagementGroup/