This morning my lovely furry alarm clock, Mogs, decided that I needed to be up at 7am. Any other day this week I’d have pretty much welcomed that but not today, it’s been a bit of a hectic week, I’ve been in Devon and London, been in hospital for myself and then also been in for my Grandad, today I really could have done with a lie in.
However, I’m always looking for a silver lining to my clouds and rather bizarrely I found it this morning in the shape of the #24hrtweetathon that was going on over on twitter. The #24hrtweet was brought to my attention by the lovely @martinhowitt who until this moment I always associated with getting up early (he is one of the few voices regularly found on twitter before 7am) and with eating frogs…in the metaphorical sense. From this day onwards Martin and a number of other fantastic souls, namely @DangerousMkting @cosmicjulie @rokkster @ChrisPenberthy and of course a dog @3daxs will take up the shape of a new mental image for me.
They have all been tweeting for the last 24hours to raise awareness of three local westcountry charities, St Loyes Foundation @stloyes who support people to get into work and become financially and socially independent; Headway Devon @headwaydevon who provide support to children and adults who have acquired a brain injury; and Hospiscare Devon @hospiscare who provide support and care to people at the end of life. The #24hrtweet was organised and run on a rota basis, you can see the fabulous people who deserve to take a bow for organising and bringing people into the mix on the timetable here. I just joined in with some waffle and banter for the past hour, I hadn’t picked up on the fact it was happening before (my bad as I’ve been very loosely engaging with twitter lately – shock horror) but I thought I’d scribble this blog post by way of explanation for anyone in my twitterstream who wonders what it was about…although most of them aren’t likely to surface much before midday 😉
I believe the success of the #24hrtweet will be measured in raised awareness and new followers or contacts. I’m sure they’ve done a great job. For me there is a ripple effect, earlier this year my mate Dan died in Propsect Hospice in Swindon, you can read about our fundraising efforts and a little about his story here. As those of you who read this regularly will also know my Dad is terminally ill with cancer. At the moment Dad is still outwardly fine, he decided not to have any chemo yet this time, had his bloods and scan done this week and will meet his consultant again this week. He has also been referred to the palliative care team at Rowcroft, our local hospice.
So the thing about the #24hrtweet is I probably wont follow these amazing people or the charities they support (I’m trying to keep my follower numbers really low at the mo to cut out information overload) but I will check in on them occasionally and more importantly when the time comes, and my family are making use of the amazing care and support I confidently know that we can rely on from our local hospice I’ll sit there and know I’m not alone. Since I joined twitter (over two years ago) I’ve spent many an hour in hospital or hospices chatting on twitter or thinking about conversations or people I’ve met on twitter. After today there are new people added to that mental map of support and I thank you all.
None of us know when we’re likely to need the support of charities like St Loyes, Headway or Hospiscare but I’m bloody sure that if or when you do you’ll be thankful for the support they provide….and the efforts the #24hrtweeters have made to raising awareness, and hopefully in time funds, to support that is amazing. Thank you all.