I’ve just come back home from a Macmillan Coffee Morning.
I got a proper Facebook event invite a few weeks ago as a bona fide civilian. Coffee and cake at Shelly’s place has been in the diary since then. Shelly’s a fellow Infant school mum and, as you’d probably guess, there were a fair few mums in attendance.
When you work on a campaign like Coffee Morning, as we have done for the last few years, it can be pretty all consuming. Thinking through the proposition, the messages, the look and feel, tools to give to a host to generate more donations… the list goes on and on. And the results get better and better.
But actually attending a coffee morning offers a real-life reminder of why hundreds and thousands of people decide to host an event and why many more choose to attend.
I spoke to Shelly about whether she’d hosted a coffee morning before. She hadn’t but she said that it felt like a no-brainer because her dad had been diagnosed with cancer a few years ago and he had a Macmillan nurse now. But it wasn’t just a rational, no-brainer decision. It was rich in emotion – in pain, in thanks, in standing shoulder to shoulder with a charity that was helping her dad (and her mum as chief carer) get through cancer.
The cancer connection was the driver but her route to fundraising action lay in the pleasure of a coffee morning. And a pleasure it was. I found out all sorts. Other people’s lives are endlessly fascinating. Somebody had resigned from their job. Somebody else had witnessed a parent berating a teacher this morning. Somebody else had a new born baby in tow and the rest of us stood marvelling at how small the baby was – the years of constant baby feeding and nappy changing thankfully behind us.
For those of us who don’t have a cancer connection (or a recent one), it didn’t matter. We’d made time to get together. Catch up with old friends. Meet new people. Share stories. And eat cake. What’s not to like about all of that?