Last weekend we had a great opportunity to meet up with old and new members of the Fresh Light and First Friday team. The purpose of the meeting was to update everyone on what has been happening over the past year and the direction we are looking to head. We are excited about moving forward to put on more events for the First Friday and the Fresh Light community in 2018. Some of the things we discussed further on in the update.
It is now just over a year ago that a new team took on the mantel of First Friday from Tim and Liza, who had been running the group faithfully for the past four years. We are looking to follow on from the great work that Tim and Liza have done in the community, looking to grow and expand the network to help others experience community through events such as First Friday and others, where people can; meet, chat and connect. Our events are run by a team of volunteers and it has been amazing to see the community which has been created.
This time last year, we re-branded First Friday trying out a couple of new venues, but ensuring the meetup's are generally held around central London area where possible. We had our first event under the new team last February and it was amazing to experience the community that has been built within the group.
What always surprises us about First Friday, is the diversity of the people that attend the events. Everyone is so friendly and the team of "hosts" on the evening, make it easy for others to be introduced to many new people in an evening, in an natural and un-forced manner.
It is really exciting to hear stories of people like Kate, who came along to First Friday and although she did not initially know anybody at the event, she was introduced to someone at the event and they got on well and have now become good friends. "It sometimes takes a little confidence to step out and chat to people, but it is fascinating to meet and chat with really interesting and friendly people."
It was great to have nine of us meet at the top floor of a London Hotel Bar and discuss how we can work together to help others experience community through the events we put on with Fresh Light and First Friday. Thanks so much to; Cammy, Christine, Catie, Joanne, Soyung, Alex, Roger and Joyan for attending. Showing support and commitment to our Vision makes us really excited knowing that we have a team of great people who can work to build a purposeful community in London and beyond!
First Friday's are now a part of Fresh Light events
Although First Friday have been very successful, there are limitations, particularly with it's name, which has meant that First Friday can only be held on the First Friday of every month. This is one of the main reasons that we decided to have Fresh Light as the overarching brand and First Friday as one of the regular events that we put on. This will not change anything day to day, but the main reasons for us doing this are to increase the capacity so that we can put on more events aside the once a month First Friday Event.
What does this mean practically, will it be organised by different people?
The format of First Friday will not change and you will not really notice much different, aside there will be links to the Fresh Light website, where there will be listings online and more of an online presence aside just using social media platforms to promote the events. There will also be a chance to subscribe to our mailing list/ newsletter.
Will the format of First Friday change?
The format of First Friday will not change at all, but we do hope to get more people involved in hosting and helping to build the community.
Will First Friday still be Free?
First Friday will always be free and the format will not change. Some extra events run by Fresh Light however may have a cost, but we aim to be as inclusive as we can.
The main reasons we are making these changes are to ensure that these social events continue when the current leadership are no longer involved directly in putting on the events. There are always costs involved in putting on these events and we would like to cross-subsidise and ensure the existence of First Friday, by charging for other events run by Fresh Light.
If you have any other questions regarding First Friday or Fresh Light, please email or contact us and we will answer you as best we can.
GET INVOLVED - Fresh Light and First Friday are looking for volunteers to join the Community
As part of moving Fresh Light and First Friday forward in the New Year, we are putting on extra events, which means we will be looking to expand the team we currently have. Volunteering is great fun and rewarding. You will get to know others and meet others and be a part of a team that is passionate about connecting people through community.
We are looking to do more collaborations with different event teams, but to do this we also require more people who believe in our vision of creating a Community Experience through the events we put on.
We are particularly looking for more volunteers int the following areas:
Hosts (If you are naturally a people person, we'd love to chat)
Administration (If you are naturally an organised person)
Social media (If you have worked in social media or are keen to learn more)
Photographer (If you are able take photos on an evening)
Event organiser (If you have ideas and would like to help organise events and small breaks)
If you are interested or know others who may be interested in any of the above, please email email@example.com to find out more.