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MICE industry comes together for charity event

125 Industry professionals gathered at Grosvenor House on Monday night (27 January) to raise funds for a work experience programme for young adults with autism. A total of $35,000 (USD) was raised by the suppliers attending the HB Cares event with the support of the MPI Foundation (MPIF) and Meeting Industry Meeting Needs (MIMN). 

The funds will be used to provide employment training, counselling and support for the young adults and employers taking part in the 2014 programme and will be provided by experts from the National Autistic Society. The placements led to increased confidence and employment for those who took part and this year the programme will be extended beyond London to Manchester. It also opened the eyes of many HR Managers and General Managers to this pool of potential employees who bring a rare loyalty, focus and attention to detail to their work. 

Ed Goodale, a 17 year old songwriter/musician kicked the evening off with the launch of his single. Ed has Asperger’s Syndrome and his love of music and performance helped him to understand his condition. Ed has interpreted his life with Asperger’s through his song ‘Symptoms’ which moved the audience, before closing the evening with two more songs. Nicola Coslett, CEO CRU Events said; “Well done for organising such a great evening for a worthwhile cause. I studied music when I was younger and therefore can recognise talent. Ed clearly has a lot of talent which he is putting to good use.”

The networking event included some interactive activities to help everyone connect. Switzerland Convention and Incentive Bureau supported a painting workshop in which guests were encouraged to contribute to a landscape painting of a typical Swiss countryside scene. Armed with brushes and paint, the iconic Swiss scene came to life on the canvas with the guidance of professional artist, Jacki Clark from The Together trust. Elsewhere, the sales team from Grosvenor House were encouraging guests to design and make their own greetings cards whilst learning about the history of the property. 

The event was organised by HelmsBriscoe and was fully hosted by the team at the J W Marriott Grosvenor House who provided hot and cold bowl food and refreshments throughout the evening. Carole McKellar, Executive Director Europe for HelmsBriscoe said; “I was delighted with the attendance and the support from everyone in the industry. I even received emails from people who could not attend but who offered their support for future fund-raising and work placements. With the extra funds, we will be able to change more lives.”

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