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How I Became Involved – Andy Cockayne

How did you become involved?

That is a question people ask when you do any kind of charity work and it is rare for 2 answers to be the same, some people are introduced by friends, other find charity opportunities online while some just stumble upon by chance!

I first became fully aware of Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice around 4 years ago; at the time I had my own small Online Marketing Company which specialised in Search Engine Optimisation.

In order to try and increase my brand awareness and to increase my business development, I attended a breakfast networking meeting every Friday morning, the event was held at various locations in Sheffield but this particular day it was at the Rutland Hotel.

For anyone who doesn’t know how these events work, basically you have a breakfast and then each member has 2-3 minutes to stand up and promote their business, some people use humour and some people convey really useful information – this opportunity is also known as your ‘elevator pitch

So… on this day a chap (we will call him Nigel) stood up and did his 2-3 minute ‘pitch’ and then asked if he could mention that he was doing a charity bike ride (coast to coast if I remember correctly) with all proceeds going to Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice – Nigel then went on to explain what the hospice was and what they did…

This is when a few of his words ‘knocked me off my feet’ or should I say off my chair as I was sitting down!

Nigel said “…they provide END OF LIFE CARE FOR CHILDREN…

Those 6 words have stuck with me ever since.

Once I returned home (I worked from home at the time) I immediately sponsored Nigel for his bike ride but I couldn’t get those words out of my mind…

Fast-forward to 2013 when I accepted a job at Bolsover Cruise Club as an Online Marketing Executive – periodically cruise lines will offer selected cruises for Bolsover Cruise Club to use for promotional or charity purposes and when P&O Cruises offered a 10 night cruise around the Baltic region in late 2013 I saw my chance!

After speaking to the MD it was agreed that I could run an eBay auction for the said cruise with cr generator online all proceeds being donated to Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice – we raised £1000 from the auction.

Since then Bolsover Cruise Club have continued to support the hospice and we have raised over £5,000 during that time, we also regularly have a charity bag collection and in July 2015 a Bolsover Cruise Club team will participate in the ‘It’s A Knockout’ challenge.

Working in the ‘digital’ sector I use social media on a daily basis and this is how I found out about Blu Crew – my daughter (who is now 12) loves to sing, dance & perform on stage and when I saw that Blu Crew were looking for volunteer performers, I made contact…

Now, Blu Crew are an adult performing group and so when an 11 year old requests an audition I’m guessing there was some trepidation, however, after auditioning and then guest performing at a Christmas show Mia is now a ‘fully fledged’ member of the team and she loves every minute of it!

So that is how I became involved with Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice and Blu Crew – how about you?

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