I can hardly believe that I am writing the end of year newsletter. It seems like only 5 minutes ago we were sat in Keynsham and I became Chairman of the branch. Well, we promised a year of change and I am proud to say, I feel we have moved in the right direction. We have a brand new website with up to the minute news and events. It is still the best place to find out what’s on and what we are doing as a branch.
We now have a Facebook account with lots of followers and again, up to the minute updates on upcoming events and news from your Bristol Branch. We have had many successful events since April including a BBQ, carers break and trip to Weston Super-Mare for fish and chips and to also cheer in our team of cyclists, who rode 60 miles from Bristol!
Fund raising in 2017 has been a massive part of our year. I am really proud to have entered teams into both The Bristol Half and The Bristol 10k. Along with The Great Weston Ride, they have raised over £2500 for the branch. We will be doing the same thing next year! We will be kicking off with 10 runners in The Bath Half Marathon in March and I welcome any suggestions with any other events. I would also like to send special thanks to Linda and Lesley fort he wonderful job they have done on the quizes this year. They have even agreed to have a second one this year and also in 2018! Good work ladies.
2018 is shaping up in a very nice way with the events diary (enclosed) not just with fund raising, but a lot of gatherings, where we can all get together and have a good time. Not only that, but to meet others in the same position and talk to each other. I look at the branch as a rather large extended family, since taking over. It always amazes me when we have a birthday party or event and see so many familiar faces. We have had 2 special people dedicate their birthday parties to HDA Bristol this year. Robin and Linda both had big birthdays and gave up their presents to donate money to the branch. I said it then and I will say it again, “it always amazes me when someone decides to run, ride a bike or jump out of a plane for HDA Bristol, but to give up your birthday presents is such an amazing thing to do!” So, many, many thanks to both of you, on behalf of all of us.
The era of change will not stop at 2017. I will be standing to be your Chairman for 2018. If I am am voted in, I am looking forward to pushing us forward together. Not everything I have done this year has been perfect, so next year we want to improve even more. From April 2018, we will be taking on two more people on the committee to allow us to push forward in Weston Super-Mare and continue the good work down there. Along with that, we want to ensure that you get the most from your branch.
We will be holding a Family Day on June 2nd 2018 at Keynsham Somerdale Centre where everyone will be welcome to come along for the day and get advice, support and knowledge about medical advances that have been made. It truly is a fantastic day and I would personally recommend it to anyone. Carol and Shirley are driving the bus on this one but we are supporting alongside them.
We have 4 festive events that are still yet to come this year:
- Festive Sale at Oldland Common United Reform Church November 18th
- Festive Quiz at Somerdale Pavilion November 24th @ 7:30pm
- Christmas Lunch in Saltford on December 3rd (Fully Booked)
- Christmas Lunch Weston Super-Mare December 9th (Fully Booked)
Please take a look at the events on the separate sheet (Link Below!) and I personally welcome and invite you to come along to any of them. If you are put off by money or getting there, I invite you to email me in confidence and I will help where I can to get you along. This group is not for people who can afford a day out or don’t have to get a taxi they cannot afford. It is for everyone to come and enjoy, so I will always do everything I can to get anyone there who wants to be.
It is a little early even for me in October to say it, but I wish you all a Merry Christmas when it comes and enjoy what is left of the year.
Thank you all for supporting Huntington’s Disease Bristol Branch and I look forward to a wonderful 2018 with all of you.
Chairman HDA Bristol