Celebrating Our Members - Lewis Thomson from JCI Brighton
by MichaelSteel on February 20, 2017 10:54
JCI UK is the organisation that develops, promotes and celebrates the achievements of young leaders across our nation and in our local communities.
Meet Lewis Thomson from JCI Brighton...
My name is Lewis. I'm a 26 year old IT professional from Aberdeen, currently living in Brighton.
I joined the Brighton chamber of JCI in January 2017 after National President Michael Steel reached out to me through social media. I had been looking for a networking organisation to join for several months since moving to Brighton and after researching JCI, it was a complete no-brainer. Not only is there a focus on personal development and growing self-belief, what better place existed to meet passionate, young and driven individuals? After attending Launchpad in Nottingham in January, I know I've made a great decision and I'm excited to get to work on relaunching the chamber here!
Growing up, I thought I had life pretty well made. I lived in a prosperous area of the UK and had a natural talent for computing. After attaining good grades in the subject at school, I decided on my career path, figuring my life was fairly future-proof.
I went on to further education, choosing a degree in Computer Network Management at a local university. During my studies, I was fortunate to secure a year-long work placement with an Oil and Gas company and following graduation, I went on to accept a Graduate position in the Global IT department of the same company as a Junior Infrastructure Analyst.
Two and a half years in to my career, with great progression offered to me with the company, my time with them was cut short. In 2015, Aberdeen was struck by the worst downturn in Oil and Gas since the 1980s and my role, along with the roles of around 2,500 others, was made redundant, and I found myself out in the real world with a very difficult choice to make.
Although a major shock at the time, this would go on to be one of the best things that has happened in my life to date.
With work scarce in Aberdeen, I took up two part-time jobs in the service sector and treaded water for around 8 months. Shortly before being made redundant, I had started a part-time business with a Network Marketing company; this had introduced me to the concept of personal development. To my parents' disdain, I chose to continue down this path; working in two relatively dead-end jobs, with a degree, working to grow a business in a poor local economy but all-the-while, absorbing all the personal development I could lay my hands on. I read books, listened to audios and attended regular training events - even a fabulous 3-day global training conference with 18,000 others at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
All the while, learning about myself and what I truly valued. My redundancy had helped me come to understand that we truly are the architects of our own success; if we want something, we have to go out there and get it. The reason so few people realise their full potential is not lack of skill, it's lack of belief. I soon came to realise that there is no better way to work than for yourself and in July 2016, exactly one year after being made redundant, I started my own IT consultancy firm. I accepted a 3 month contract with a client in Crawley, packed my life into the back of my car and drove, for over 13 hours, to start a new chapter in the sunny south in Brighton; a place I'd had the ambition of living in for a number of years. I still run my Network Marketing business in my spare time and am currently in the middle of preparing for my second visit to Las Vegas in April!
My mission now is to share the criticality of what I have learned with as many Generation-Ys as possible. It's tough out there, especially for young people, but I truly believe if you can define what success means for you, develop a vision of how that looks which is absolutely crystal clear and combine the understanding of how important it is to develop yourself, as well as the skills required in your chosen field, with hard work, you will succeed.
Looking to the long-term, my vision for my career is to move away from IT; living solely on the income I generate from my Network Marketing business. Of course, to grow a Network Marketing business, you need a network and although I already had a handful of friends in Brighton before I moved, if I wanted my business to be the massive success I dream of every day, it was crucial I found a way of meeting new people in a professional environment. Although the best part of having a Network Marketing business is being able to work with your friends, sometimes you have to step out your social circle to be the proof that it works.
As a member of JCI, not only would I meet young, energetic and professional people, I would be able to grow my skills in business building as I work with Anne-Marie to relaunch the Brighton Chapter, as well as being able to gain contacts both nationally within the UK as well as abroad; allowing me to fulfil my goal of building a global organisation. But it's not all about business and making money... Although I want to personally help as many people as possible achieve the life they truly want, through Network Marketing, I will have a lot of time on my hands when I am able to give up full-time work. I'm daft for houses and I see myself moving into property development, with the intention of improving the living standards of private rental tenants in Brighton. I also want to volunteer, but I wasn't sure exactly what I would do... With an avenue to channel all of my personal development into with JCI, I think I've found it!
I owe everything I have gained in my life since my redundancy to reading books by inspirational people such as Jack Canfield, David Schwartz PhD, Rhonda Byrne and Robert Kayosaki, to name but a few.
If you can conceive it and believe it, you can achieve it.
by MichaelSteel on February 19, 2017 19:26
JCI UK are thrilled to announce that we have granted Provisional Organisation status for a new chamber - JCI Hull.
JCI Hull will now begin the process of working towards full affiliation to JCI UK and we look forward to seeing events coming up and giving development opportunities to young people in the area.
Could you lead the search for the next Ten Outstanding Young People of the UK?
by Sarah Beckwith on February 13, 2017 14:06
JCI's TOYP (Ten Outstanding Young Persons of the World) Awards is a flagship global programme, which annually celebrates young people who excel in their chosen fields and create positive change. JCI UK runs an annual programme for UK nominees, who then go onto the international competition the following year. You can find out all about TOYP on our dedicated web pages.
As JCI UK is the organisation that develops, promotes and celebrates the achievements of young leaders across our nation and in our local communities, this is an important programme which we want to see grow even bigger and better in 2017.
We are looking for a JCI UK member to take on the role of 2017 TOYP Manager to lead the project. Some of the benefits of taking on this role include:
- Gain project management skills.
- Lead a national project, liaising with national board and local chambers.
- Interact with inspirational nominees and help recognise and celebrate their achievements.
- Involvement in the TOYP Awards Ceremony at National Convention, including public speaking experience (if interested).
- Build up contacts for the benefit of JCI UK and our chambers.
A TOYP team is already in place. The JCI UK TOYP Manager will be supported by past TOYP Managers Ilona Alock and James Lambert and Immediate Past National President, Sarah Beckwith.
If you are interested in taking on the role of TOYP Manager or joining the team, please get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org
Celebrating Our Members - Abbie Hart from JCI Manchester
by MichaelSteel on February 1, 2017 09:03
JCI UK is the organisation that develops, promotes and celebrates the achievements of young leaders across our nation and in our local communities.
Meet Abbie Hart from JCI Manchester...
Since joining the board Abbie has been a particularly active member single handedly organising every social event for the 2016 calendar.
She was keen to make this year's social calendar more varied than last year's, and so recognising the focus on SDG 3 Good Health and Wellbeing at the UK level, and being aware of the majority of the memberships push for a healthier lifestyle in January, Deputy President Abbie Hart decided to organise a 'net-walking' event on Sunday 22nd January as part of a New Year New You Kickstart social for JCI Manchester.
She organised a walk around nearby Dovestone Reservoir followed by a rewarding meal at Muse Bar and Restaurant in UpperMill, a nearby eatery she works with in her career outside of JCI,
It was a truly fantastic event and everyone who came (members and non-members alike) commented on how much of a great time they had. The event simultaneously pleased current members and made non-members consider joining! The event killed many birds with one stone and was classically JCI!
This style of event will be repeated numerous times throughout the year and the plan is to ask board members to come forward to plan future events as a potential development opportunity for them self.
JCI Manchester will be inviting other Chambers to join us on future walks in 2017.
Sarah Williams quoted:
"On Sunday, I had the opportunity to go on a lovely winter walk around Dovestone Reservoir up in the hills near Oldham followed by some heart-warming food at a nearby pub, Muse, in the village of Uppermill.
I was joining a group of JCI members, who were very welcoming and during the walk, had chance to speak with many of them about what they do and their involvement with JCI.
It was clear that they are all passionate about what they do as well as ambitious about making Manchester a great place to work and live.
My area of work involves promoting the social and economic benefits of green space and nature, so it was great to meet and join a group of people, potential future leaders in our city, reaping the benefits...enjoying a refreshing Sunday walk in nature, whilst chatting about career opportunities and how to make a positive impact.
Surely that's got to be a win-win!"
We also received a lot of love on Twitter!
by MichaelSteel on January 31, 2017 10:31
Well 2017 has certainly been kicked off in style with JCI Launched in Nottingham.
Dean Lomax (self taught paleontologist and star of ITV's Dinosaur Britain), Alice Biggar (holder of the Nicest Job in Britain) and Nikky Shamau Nortont (Building a Brand Story session) inspired members and gave the members added thought about what can be achieved when you have a desire make your dream a reality.
Our Overcoming Adversity panel discussion, speednetworking & National Board roundtable discussions had members from every chamber within the UK out of their seats. It was
Were you ACE in 2016?!
by Katie Ogley on January 23, 2017 17:06
At 2017's first National event, Launchpad, we will be looking back to 2016 and presenting ACE certificates, recognising our members who have been giving back to their local community.
If you have undertaken any voluntary or community work in 2016, whether through JCI or not, then there is still time to register your hours. All you have to do is complete this simple form by 2pm Friday 27th January 2017.
Don't know about ACE?
One of the core values of JCI is to make a local impact by being ACTIVE CITIZENS and what better way to do this than to volunteer in your local community. Here in JCI UK we want to reward those members who go that little bit further and get actively involved in their local community. As a result, we recognise members for their level of community involvement through the community hour’s project.
There are certificates for 10, 20 and 30+ hours volunteered throughout 2016.
We believe in recognising the hard work our members put in, so don't miss the opportunity to be recognised.
Pound a Day, We're Half Way There!
by Katie Ogley on January 12, 2017 20:33
Fellow JCI members,
We're half way through & it's so exciting to see that many of you have signed up for the Pound A Day Challenge! We are receiving a mixture of experiences in our feedback as is expected.
I will share some with you here, but first, here's a quote from save the children
"Many thanks for choosing to support Save the Children. With the help of fundraisers like you, we are able to make a difference to children around the world, especially in times of crisis like in Syria and Gaza at the moment.
I love that JCI have tried to live off £1's worth of food for a whole week! I think it's absolutely astounding that £1 a day is what 1.4 billion people worldwide have to live on. Well done to everyone involved for bravely trying to do this for a whole week".
It's really great to get a response of appreciation from our chosen charity - Save The Children.
In terms of personal experiences, some of you report that you are now 'thinking about food all day', which is totally normal and we understand. The reality is as one member said- "you sometimes forget especially when treats are presented at work", but the idea is to get back on the band-waggon once you have realised this. Most of you are managing well, with fabulous ideas for new meals like....
Personally, I know I have been getting slightly irritable because of the change in diet, but I've caught myself a couple of times & got right back into gear with a positive mindset. Just the realisation that it's by choice & only for a short defined period of time, has made me so appreciative of the seemingly mundane things we take for granted daily in life. I am certainly experiencing personal growth and gratitude and this is spilling over into other areas of my life- social, professional, financial, family and business. I have realised that I actually enjoy warm lemon water & will slowly replace soft carbonated drinks with this going forward. I also had a preconceived notion that only junk food is affordable but that's not necessarily the case as I can see from some of your pictures. You can eat healthy on a limited budget. I must admit though, I do miss having fruit, which I couldn't incorporate in my budget this week as I concentrated on buying carbs to sustain me.
Feel free to share your experiences & 'aha moments' on our Facebook Event page.
Keep the pictures coming in with snap shots, receipts and recipes (optional but may encourage 'creative cooking' for others). Also, if you have any JCI merchandise like mugs, cups or posters, do include those in your pictures to further expand our social media reach & impact. Remember to tag savethechildrenuk on all social media platforms and on twitter using the hashtag #jciukpoundaday
Our target is to raise £1000 for Save the children. You can start making your donations and also ask your friends and family to support you via our JCI UK Just Giving page.
To make it a little more interesting, we will be giving away small Prizes for the chamber with the most number of participants in the challenge; the person who fundraises the most; the person who interacts the most about our challenge via social media (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram), and a couple more for great engagement & mini-blogs.
Either way, you are all winners as you have moved beyond your own desires to selflessly reach out and help others. This is our main focus. Each participant will be receiving a JCI certificate at the end of the challenge, to be presented at the JCI Launchpad event happening on the 28th of January in Nottingham.
You will also get the opportunity to hear from our beneficiary charity 'Save The Children' as they enlighten us more about their work and receive their token donation from us. We are happy to post your certificate to you as well if you are unable to collect it physically.
Once again, thank you for taking part in the challenge. This is what JCI is all about- moving beyond awareness of hunger & poverty, to taking action and actually doing something about it.
If you have any questions, get in touch with me via email: Epi.email@example.com
Or ask away in the Facebook group for the benefit of all.
We have surely started the year off with a bang! Let's keep the momentum going.
Once again- thank you and very well done to you all.
JCI UK National Community Director 2017
Pound a Day Challenge
by MichaelSteel on December 28, 2016 11:09
As we start off the New Year from all the Christmas festivities- binging, over-indulging and drinking with family & friends, it is easy to forget those that are less fortunate in our communities.
Our pound a day challenge is just the solution to set you back on track and also give you an opportunity to experience what it feels like to go through a week without access to the luxury foods we often take for granted.
This project is in aid of ‘Save the children', a charity that helps to eradicate extreme poverty and hunger around the world, and by so doing, helps to tackle the first two of the United Nations Sustainable Development goals (SDG#1 and SDG#2) in the process.
Save the children operate worldwide in developing countries, as well as right here in the United Kingdom.
Pound A Day will be our First National Event of 2017 and will be taking place the week of the 9th -16th January 2017. All we ask is that you take £7 off from your weekly food budget that week to live on, and donate the rest through our JCI UK Page.
All proceeds go to ‘Save the children'. Get your friends and family to support you so that you are not in it alone.
Use the #jciukpoundaday in your social media posts and let us know what you are eating -your shopping lists, recipe ideas and meal photos. Join the excitement, keep in touch and let us know how you are getting on!
Here are some guidelines to help you throughout the challenge.
• Your £7 weekly budget has to include both food and drink.
• You donate the difference between your £7 budget and your normal food and drink spend and donate it through the Just Giving page.
• You can use basic seasonings of salt and pepper from your cupboard. However, you cannot use additional spices such as chilli and garlic unless you buy them from your budget.
• You can use oil for cooking purposes, but only in small qualities. It cannot be used in large amounts for things such as salad dressings unless you purchase it specifically for such dishes.
• You cannot use sauces or condiments such as mayonnaise or ketchup unless you purchase them from your £7 budget.
• You can buy items that come in large quantities, such as tea bags, split it and exclude the percentage of money for the amount taken out. However, you must declare this before the event and make sure you are not tempted to cheat and dip into the part that is from outside your budget!
How you can get involved
~ Undertake the full challenge, using the rules above. We encourage this one the most as part of the challenge is understanding what it is like to live on such a small budget, as many people in the UK do.
~ If you don't feel able to commit to the full challenge, consider giving up a luxury item, such as alcohol or your favourite sweet treat, and donate what you would have spent.
~Sponsor other members taking part.
Those that have taken part in the challenge before, speak of the rewards in helping them budget better, and just the transformation into better citizens that are sensitive to the needs of other people around them.
Will you join the challenge?
NAW16 - New Chamber and Chamber
by Sarah Beckwith on December 28, 2016 10:33
In the last of our National Awards 2016 blogs, we look at our most outstanding chambers.
Most Outstanding New Local Organisation - JCI Greenwich
(Sponsored by Mark Riddel, Senator #60908)
From being granted Provisional Organisation status in March, to full affiliation in September, our newest chamber has achieved a lot this year:
- 100 days project with specific target focus of achieving full affiliation.
- Soft launch night attended by over 50 people. The event was recorded by local media and featured branded lanyards, posters and cake!
- Established a working partnership with the University of Greenwich to engage on a Mental Health Project that would address and support the young people with Mental Health challenges at the University and in the community at large.
- Collaborated with JCI Uganda and JCI Kenya, including a mental health twitter chat.
- Project established for members to act as role models and mentors to young people in the community.
- Members participated in World President visit, making their presence felt with a Greenwich banner.
Most Outstanding Local Organisation - JCI London
(Sponsored by Charles Eder, Senator #69491)
Some of the many achievements of JCI London in 2016 include:
- Created a focused Plan of Action with three key objectives.
- Total of over 60 events held in different areas of opportunity, including: quarterly kick-off events, Meet the Members open evenings, Thirsty Thursday networking, Community events with local partners with a practical focus, international themed dinners, Jet Set Your Career training series, public speaking training, programme of training for the leadership team.
- Ran large, long-term projects: London2Ghana, Peace Week, London4Refugees (see other blogs for details of these projects).
- Established and built on partnerships with organisations such as the London Chamber of Commerce Commercial Education Trust, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Global University Systems and the City of London.
- Improved processes and governance with an intranet system and council team onboarding procedures.
- Increase in social media activities and following (Facebook likes increased from 4,105 at 01/01 to 4,749 at 30/09 and Twitter followers from 2,702 followers at 01/01 to 3,505 at 30/09).
- Having a member at pretty much every international event this year, icnluding European Conference, World Congress, European Academy, Global Partnerships Summit and European Know How Transfer.
- Always maintained a focus on fulfilling the JCI Mission by providing development opportunities to members.