Dragons Den CMG Style!

01 June 2018   Add comments

Last week we hosted our first very own Dragon’s Den, based on the hit BBC 2 programme. The idea first came to fruition when Michael Fullerton suggested doing something to promote small businesses and personal start ups within CMG. The idea took off from there!  I have always felt very strongly about the importance of supporting and encouraging people into employment. Not only so they can earn money for themselves but also to increase their independence and confidence. We advertised this event all across the organisation calling for anyone who had a passion that could be turned into a business or an entrepreneurial opportunity.

Michael Fullerton (Clinical director), Andrew Wasley (employment officer) Simon Tobin (person we support and trainer) and I made up the judging panel. Each person had 30 minutes to present their ideas to the panel and suggest an amount they would like the dragon’s to invest.

I am so impressed with all of the candidates. Each proposal was well thought through, with clear market strategies and a plan of what funding and other support they wanted from CMG. A key strength with each proposal was the obvious talents of each person. This demonstrates that with creative support, people can maximise use of their natural skills and interests to benefit themselves and their communities. For the majority of the population it is quite a daunting thing to stand up and give a presentation to a panel of judges, let alone ask for financial support. Imagine all of this with the added difficulty of a learning disability.

Each candidate was successful and was offered a monetary sum, and help with marketing and advertising. The candidates that had products to sell have all been offered their own stall at The People’s Conference (26th July).

Once a month for the next year Andrew Wasley will be getting updates from the candidates and their home managers to report back how their businesses are going, and to offer any additional support.

The day was such a success it now has been firmly placed into the CMG events calendar. I’m excited to see what next year will bring.

“The six people, who stepped forward with a wide range of exciting enterprises and opportunities did not disappoint. I look forward to seeing how each enterprise evolves” Michael Fullerton

Please see below for pictures from the day:

Artistry by akmd (card business where people can colour in their own cards), The dragons offered £150 towards her £1000 request, support with approaching local independent shops and a stall at the Peoples Conference, social media to tie in with her blog and a card stand and honesty box at Leatherhead.
‘Cakes and Bakes’ was awarded the full request of £156.64, he was also offered marketing support and a stall at the People’s Conference.
“Playing party music in Hampshire” awarded £175 to cover lights, CD’s, T-shirt design and CD covers. He was also offered social media coverage and the design and distribution of flyers internally.
“The Pesky Dragons” Michael, Andrew, Peter & Simon
“Design & Print Business” was awarded £150 to buy canvasses and paints together with social media coverage and a stall at the Peoples Conference. The Dragons gave suggestions of selling prices and locations such as local markets and for him to sign his work. He will also have a stall at the Family Conference and the People’s Conference.






“Windsor Vegetables” was offered his full request of  £150 to get stocked up for the next 2 seasons with seeds and gardening equipment.











“Gourmet Cakes” Gourmet Cakes was offered the full amount of £110 for equipment and start up ingredients and she was also offered a stall at Peoples Conference and internally printed flyers.




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