Last year I blogged under the Nurture1213 tag, which offered a chance to reflect on my Highlights of the year just gone by and my Hopes for the forthcoming year. It’s been interesting rereading the hopes post. Have I achieved all I wanted, and how do I feel about that? I am of course taking full credit for my hope for a summery summer, that came true at least.
So, what have my thirteen 2013 Highlights been?
- Family: I’m very lucky to have an amazing family who I love to the moon and back and back again.
- Work: There’s been lots of change at work, some of this has been positive and some of this has been a challenge for me. I welcomed some new excellent members of staff into the team at the beginning of the year, and had to say goodbye to some at the end of the year. My work means a lot to me. The work we do matters to children and families, and I think in the grand scheme of pot holes, bins and grit, this is what matters in local gov. We should be ensuring the most vulnerable (adults or children) within our community are safe and cared for. It what helps me through the challenges.
- West Mercia Women’s Aid: At the beginning of the year I was lucky to be co-opted onto the Board of Trustees for West Mercia Women’s Aid. For 30 years this charity has been supporting women and children affected by Domestic Abuse. The staff, volunteers and other trustees join together to do amazing work to help keep women and children safe. It’s important work when on average 2 women a week are killed by a male partner or former partner. It’s important work which faces increasing challenges as local gov contracts are reduced and ultimately more women and children are put in danger.
- Cllr Kate: When the (re)elections were taking place for our parish council I couldn’t help but wonder why the list of councillors didn’t include any women. How could they represent the views of the parish if they didn’t represent the parish? So, I applied for co-option and now hopefully try to represent a different view of the parish.
- For the Kids: I’m the (worst) secretary to our Friends of School committee and over the last 12 months we have helped to raise about £5000 for the school. The money goes on equipment and outings which really helps the small school.
- LGComms: My camping year kicked off in January by attending an LGComms event looking at social media and digital communications. It offered a mixture of traditional conference style presentations and an unconference free for all. Whilst the event itself was a highlight, another highlight was meeting Phil Jewitt ITRW. He’s ace and also doing revolutionary digital comms in Leeds.
- Comms Camp: In February I also attended the first Comms Camp organised by the skilful Ann Kempster, Dan Slee and Darren Caveney. You can read more about my take on the event here One of my 2013, no, lifetime highlights was to be appointed Official Cake Monitor for Comms Camp, I need to add that to my Linkedin skills.
- Best By West Mids: I delayed my annual summer holiday so I could attend the launch of a white paper on the use of social media by West Midlands local gov. I am proud to have 3 areas of our work included as examples of best practice. You can read the white paper here
- Channel Shift Camp: My final camping session of the year was the inaugural #ChannelShiftCamp organised by top chap Nick Hill. At the event I got to talk to Ally Hook and Emma Rodgers and although they probably don’t realise it, they both separately saved me a little from a massive confidence wobble. Amazing women.
- The Van: Last year I hoped for a summery summer and we were lucky to spend most of our summer on our jolly holidays at the caravan in Wales. Weekends and school summer holidays spent on the beach, up welsh hills and eating ice cream. It was ace, whether you’re a 6yo or a lot older.
- Pets: We had a new addition to our family; a ginger tom cat called Rocco and while he spends most of his time napping and ignoring us, it’s great having him around.
- Truth: I truly believe that sometimes it’s important to be bold and to be brave and that friends might not always support my actions, and whilst the fallout from the truth might not have been nice at the time, in the grand scheme of things no one died, only maybe a friendship
- Weekly Blog Club: Although I haven’t contributed much recently, I have tried to be a guest host on a few more occasions this year, and wish I would be able to commit to more. However, it doesn’t stop me admiring the blogs submitted, the summary produced each week and the support it offers to bloggers. Whatever path it takes in the future it would not have been the success it has been for the last 2 years without the dedication of Janet Davis. Thank you Janet.
So that’s it. It’s been quite a year. Next my Nurture1314 Hopes.
Friday 27th December 2013