An Update on Meeting Needs from Chairman, Chris Parnham

I was invited to take over the role of Meeting Needs Chairman this year, following the sad loss of its previous Chairman Chris Peacock, and as I said at the M+IT Awards this year, I truly hope to do him proud, he loved Meeting Needs, and he sure is a tough act to follow.


I am so in awe of the fantastic team of Meeting Needs volunteers, my Board of Directors. They care and add so much, as well as holding major full-time roles within the meeting and events industry. Five-months in to the role, and the team and I have redefined our mission statement, and created 3 sub-committees to focus our efforts and drive further success.


There was some confusion around what Meeting Need actually was, so our new mission statement defines this; Meeting Needs is a foundation that awards life-changing grants to small charities, with funds raised from within the meetings and events industry.


Our committees are Strategy & Communications, which I head up, The Giving Committee, led by Karen Small and The Fundraising Committee led by Kate Conway.


We raise money by organsing fundraising events, or by encouraging industry partners to make Meeting Needs their cause when organizing their own events. Our biggest fundraisers so far are M+IT Awards, where we raised more than £20,000 this year and SITE GB Christmas lunch where we raised £15,000 last Christmas. We also lead a team in the Royal Parks Half Marathon where our runners raised more than £23,000.


In addition to this we have a number of companies within the industry, who give us a £500 annual donation to be recognized as our Charity Partners. I cherish this generous community and hope to be able to grow it over the years ahead.


So how can you help? Well, if you are planning any charity events this year, please make Meeting Needs your charity foundation, and on your behalf, we will see that these funds go to very worthy causes.


A typical grant is just £5,000, and to a small charity, this can literally be life-changing, and small charities often fly under the radar and struggle to raise money. Why not see if your company can become one of our treasured Charity Partners, for just £500 a year?


If you would like to get more involved with Meeting Needs, each of our Committees is looking to recruit new volunteers, so please reach out to me, and I will do my best to find the right opportunity for you. It feels really good, to do really good work, and Meeting Needs does it best, for those that need it most, so please help us.


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