Spreading Positive Vibes – FU Loves The Midlands #29
So I’m already on my third hot chocolate of the day. With Mental Health Awareness Day ahead of us, it’s time to focus on the little things in life which keep us, and those around us, feeling in fine fettle.
For me, it’s the little highlights of my day that can make all the difference, walking the dogs, watching a classic comedy clip or long forgotten childhood TV show on YouTube or indulging in some serious WhatsApp banter with friends- all of it accompanied with a low calorie hot chocolate!
It’s about taking time out for yourself and making time for others too. Now more than ever it’s important to be keeping in touch with people and spreading positive vibes to those you know and love- you’d be surprised what a positive impact an unexpected text or phone call can have at the minute. We all need a bit of support now and then.
We’ve tried to put some of those happy moments in this weeks newsletter- whether it’s a feel good story, something to look forward to or a video to watch and reminisce over. So grab a drink, sit back and enjoy or why not share it with a friend? It might brighten their day a little too.
Until next week, in the words of Jerry Springer
Take care of yourself and each other,
Jon, Kevin and the #FUFighters
OBLIGATORY BAD JOKE
I have a fear of speed bumps,
but I’m slowly getting over it.
LEICESTER GIFT CARD LAUNCHED TO SUPPORT CITY SHOPS
BID Leicester has launched The Leicester Gift Card to give a boost to the city’s high street retail and hospitality businesses. The card, which can be purchased at values between £5 and £500, can be spent in more than 100 city centre businesses. Outlets participating in the scheme include high street chains, independent shops, restaurants, pubs, cinemas and hotels – find out where you can spend it here.
1990 IN 3.5 MINUTES- THE BEST THING ON THE INTERNET RIGHT NOW
Pretty much the best thing on the internet right now, The Hood Internet have stitched together samples of more than 60 songs from 1990 and mixed them into one 3½-minute song. Tracks featured include A Tribe Called Quest, AC/DC, Alice In Chains, Bell Biv DeVoe, Black Box, The Charlatans, D.N.A. featuring Suzanne Vega, Deee-Lite, Depeche Mode, EMF, En Vogue, Enigma, Eric B. & Rakim, The Farm, George Michael, Guns N’ Roses, Happy Mondays, INXS, Jane’s Addiction, Madonna, New Kids on the Block, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Pixies, Primal Scream, Prince, Public Enemy, Roxette, Salt-n-Pepa, Sinéad O’Connor, Tony! Toni! Tone!, Whitney Houston and Wilson Phillips to name a few!
They’ll be working their way through the nineties, releasing a new year each Thursday, or if you’re more of an eighties baby, check out their YouTube channel, as they have video playlists from 1979 all the way through to 1989. Enjoy.
COVENTRY ON LOOKOUT FOR CULTURAL EXCHANGE AHEAD OF 2021 CELEBRATIONS
Coventry City of Culture Trust is calling for local arts organisations to put themselves forward to contribute to the Youthful Cities programme, which will see Coventry forge connections with four international cities to explore the theme of youthfulness- find out how you could get involved here.
MANAGING MENTAL HEALTH IN THE NEW NORMAL
There are limits to what we can do to control the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus), but there’s a lot we can do to control our mental response to it. With Mental Health Day on the 10th October, Brendan Street, Professional Head of Emotional Wellbeing at Nuffield Health, explains why you may be feeling anxious and provides some advice for managing your mental wellbeing. Read it here.
NEW FUND OFFERS OPPORTUNITIES TO CITY’S HOMELESS CHARITIES
As Birmingham lives through a local lockdown and people are once again urged to stay at home, the city’s charities, hostels and soup kitchens continue to rally together in order to help those facing homelessness. To help alleviate the pressures being felt, Heart of England Community Foundation and Deutsche Bank have launched a new joint grant in order to help the city’s vital homeless charities- find out how to apply for one here.
SOMETHING TO LOOK FORWARD TO: BILL BAILEY TOUR DATES ANNOUNCED
Described by The Times as “The finest stand-up comedian this country has to offer”, Bill will be bringing his brand new live show ‘EN ROUTE TO NORMAL’ to venues in 2021, calling at the Sutton Coldfield Town Hall on the 2nd Jan and Motorpoint Arena Nottingham on Thursday 23 December 2021.Tickets go on sale this Friday 9 October 2020, with prices from £41.05 (includes admin fee). Tickets can be purchased online here.
PUBLIC TARGETED BY CHARITY SECTOR IN SECOND WAVE APPEAL FOR VOLUNTEERS
Voluntary Action LeicesterShire (VAL), have made a new appeal for support from well-intentioned members of the public to offer their time and skills to the hundreds of struggling voluntary groups and community charities across the county, ahead of the winter season and anticipated re-introduction of stricter lockdown measures.
The charity hub, which supports the voluntary, charity and social enterprise (VCSE) sector across Leicester and Leicestershire, first made an appeal in March, in conjunction with Leicester City Council and Leicestershire County Council. The response was so positive that it was affectionately dubbed the ‘VAL Army’, with thousands of community-minded individuals volunteering their time and skills to help groups and individuals whose services in the community were dramatically affected by the lockdown measures.
Skills sought can be as simple as being confident to pick up a telephone and help with support and crisis lines; be fit or able to help deliver goods to the doors of service users; or simply to act as a befriender to those in the community who are feeling vulnerable and isolated.
The appeal to volunteers is county-wide, but there is an express interest to hear from individuals living in:
· Oadby & Wigston
· Queens Road
· Spinney Hills & Highfields
If you have an ability to help – or know someone who can – you can find out more information by visiting www.valonline.org.uk/volunteer
HAVE BALCONY WILL GARDEN: FIVE TIPS TO CREATE YOUR OWN BALCONY OASIS
With all of us spending much more time at home, we’ve all discovered how having a little green space to call your own is a real benefit for the mind, body, and soul. So, to help those living in a flat or apartment, regulated property buyers, Good Move offer tips on how to create your very own balcony garden – read them here.
CAT CHARITY IS ON THE PROWL IN LEICESTERSHIRE
Cats Protection has launched a volunteer appeal in Leicestershire to find kind-hearted people to play a vital role in helping cats get back on their paws. The branch is currently looking for a fundraising events team leader, a treasurer, a publicity team leader and a number of Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) volunteers. Find out how you can get involved here.
FOREST FUN FOR RAG ‘N’ BONE MAN IN SUMMER 2021
Neo-blues & soul singer Rag‘n’Bone Man, will be getting back to nature next summer with a series of forest concerts including a date at Cannock Chase Forest which goes on sale tomorrow – find out more and get your tickets here.
PANTO CANCELLED? OH NO IT ISN’T
Following on from the success of the summer’s CAR PARK PARTY which toured the UK comedy, theatre and live music shows, the organisers have partnered up with Birmingham Stage Company and Horrible Histories for Car Park Panto – the socially distanced celebration which will comes to the Ricoh Arena on the 15th December and Stoneleigh Park, Warwickshire 2nd and 3rd January 2021, with the show Horrible Christmas and we can’t wait. Find out what’s in store and how to get tickets here.
ESSENTIAL AUTUMN SKINCARE SENT FROM HEAVEN
It’s that time of the year that calls for cosy knits, woolly socks…and great skincare! As the temperatures change, so should the products you’re using daily; ensuring your complexion is protected and ready for the harsher weather to come. Click here to find out what Heaven Founder and Royal Facialist, Deborah Mitchell, reaches for at this time of the year.
SOCIALLY DISTANCED SPOOKINESS
Ever fancied taking part in a real-life psychic investigation? With many of us looking for new and unusual things to occupy the dark winter’s nights, a professionally organised night of ghost hunting could be just the job! Leicestershire based company, Haunted Evenings, offer amateur spook sleuths the chance to spend time in and investigate some the of UK’s most haunted buildings. Split into small groups across large locations, it’s the perfect socially distanced night out – what’s safer than being alone in the dark in a haunted house afterall?
There’s still time to join them on an investigation of Brighton’s Old Police Cells on the 7th November; Staffordshire’s Anzio Army Camp on the 14th November and the terrifying Old Gresley Hall near Swadlincote on the 5th December. Find out more at: www.hauntedevenings.co.uk
HISTORY RE-VISITED THIS OCTOBER AT THE RSC
Juliet Gilkes Romero’s urgent and provocative new play, The Whip, will receive its online premiere this October as part of The Royal Shakespeare Company’s marking of Black History Month. The play explores the human cost of the multi-billion slavery compensation bill, which contained provision for the financial compensation of slave owners – rather than of slaves themselves – by the British taxpayer, for the loss of their “property” following the abolition of the slave trade in 1833- find out how you can see it here.
This year, after having the best part of six months away from education, it’s clear to see that protecting our children’s mental health is more important than ever before. National education brand, Tutor Doctor, has put together a list of ways for parents to encourage their child’s positive mental health.
BAME COMMUNITIES SUPPORTED BY LEICESTER BASED PROJECTS THROUGH COVID-19
With many within Leicester’s BAME communities facing struggles with the COVID-19 virus alongside a variety of socio-economic challenges, Voluntary Action LeicesterShire (VAL) have delivered two projects designed to reduce social isolation by offering support that can help with employability as well as health and well-being. Find out about them here.
STUDENTS IN LEICESTER COULD WIN A YEAR’S SUPPLY OF FREE FOOD FROM TAKEAWAY APP FOODHUB
Foodhub is offering students across Leicester the chance to apply for the tastiest job ever – Chief Student Taste Tester. The winner gets the chance to taste offerings from takeaways and food outlets in their area FOR FREE!
To apply for this dream job, students from universities across Leicester simply have to visit this link and either show or tell Foodhub why they have the best tastebuds for the job. Students feeling particularly adventurous can upload a video of themselves explaining why they should be chosen for the best job on campus.
LCB LAUNCH THEIR THIRD DESIGN SEASON AND SHOWCASE
Leicester’s LCB Depot, in the heart of the Cultural Quarter, is once again celebrating the range and vitality of the city’s design community through a specially developed programme of talks, exhibitions, and events – both online and offline. Led by designers for designers, students, new talent and the public, they’ll be showcasing the latest work from various design disciplines with new ideas from students and established professionals alike. See the full programme of events here
NEW CHARITY LAUNCHES TO HELP CITY’S HOMELESS STAND TALL
With World Homeless Day taking place on Saturday, a brand-new start-up launches in Birmingham, aiming to get more people off the streets and into employment. Standing Tall will work with local businesses to match rough sleepers with stable jobs and provide tailored accommodation to help them into independent living- find out about how it will work here.
PHOENIX CINEMA REOPENS THIS WEEK
Great news. Leicester’s independent cinema, Phoenix, is reopening its doors after six months of enforced closure due to Coronavirus. With new social distancing and extensive safety measures in place, the city centre cinema and its café bar will initially open seven days a week from 12pm – 10pm daily – find out what you can see and when, here.
GHOSTBUSTERS AND COCKTAILS- WHAT MORE COULD YOU ASK FOR?
Millennium Point will show two iconic movies, offering film buffs the perfect night out, with fan-favourites Ghostbusters and Back to the Future coming to the big screen. Both screenings will include a host of drinks served throughout and movie trivia, in partnership with The Wine Events Company- get all the details of how to book your tickets here.
SWAP SHOP LAUNCHES IN LEICESTER
New community venture, Swap Shop, is taking inspiration from the 1970’s TV show of the same name with an online platform that aims to connect people willing to trade services and skills. The idea is for small, local businesses and charities to assist each other by filling each other’s skill gaps, or to swap a service for another that they need. So, for example, a new restaurant needs a logo designing and, in return, can offer dinner for two; or a professional tennis coach who needs a little admin help will give tennis lessons to their new assistant.
If this sounds like your kind of friendly, retro trading floor, then you can register on www.leicsswapshop.co.uk to see all the current offers and make your own. Follow @leicsswapshop on Twitter to keep up to date with new exchanges and if you have any questions on the suitability of your swap, or want to know more about how it all works, please email [email protected]
OPEN CASTING CALL FOR WEST MIDLAND’S ACTING TALENT
Want to be part of an online TV show breaking new ground in the West Midlands? Belgrade Film and Digital Ltd are looking for local actors to appear in SeaView – a six-part, supernatural drama set among the region’s urban, working class communities- find out who they’re looking for and how you can audition here.
BIRMINGHAM OPERA COMPANY TO PRESENT WAGNER’S RHINEGOLD SUMMER 2021
Well known for presenting work in their home city’s abandoned buildings, sometimes a factory, a nightclub, an ice rink, Birmingham Opera Company have launched their next bold mission; Wagner’s RhineGold and it’s a pretty unusual location- find out where here.
LEICESTERSHIRE BUTCHERS CLEAN UP AT AWARDS
Mountsorrel family butchers and herdsmen, Roberts, have scooped four prestigious awards in the National Craft Butchers annual awards. Everything that they entered into the competition was placed, including their prime beef burgers and pork & leek sausages. The team make fresh sausages each week in a variety of continually changing special flavours – read about their success here.
WORLD OF CHRISTMAS LAUNCHED AT GATES’
With over 14,000 square feet of enchanting displays, visiting Gates’ Garden Centre’s Christmas showrooms is a tradition in our household and, this year, they’re looking better than ever with every style and colour of decoration that you heart could desire, and then some! It’s the perfect escape from the everyday world and open daily. Visit the website to find out more.
This Week’s Motivational Quote
“Life brings tears, smiles and memories. The tears dry, the smiles fade, but the memories last forever.’
– Mark Faisal