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Get Ready For SOUP – A Micro Community Fundraiser That’s Coming To Guildford

Published on: 26 Nov, 2015
Updated on: 27 Nov, 2015

A new initiative that brings communites together and acts as a fundraiser on a local basis is coming to Guildford.

It’s called SOUP and works on many levels by bringing together neighbours, helping to promote social enterprise, acting as a platform to share resources and supporting community projects and ideas. It’s all done over a light meal that everyone taking part usually helps with, hence the name SOUP.

Joining In! co-ordinator in Bellfields and Slyfield, Helen Linnell checks out some soup!

Joining In! co-ordinator for Bellfields and Slyfield, Helen Linnell, checks out some soup!

You can hear all about it at a launch event taking place at the Boileroom in Stoke Fields on Sunday, November 29, from 1pm to 4pm.

Billed as a community micro-granting dinner, it is being organised by the entertainment venue itself in conjunction with the Joining In! project that supports community involvement in the Westborough, Stoke and Ash wards.

The Joining In! co-ordinator in Bellfields and Slyfield (Stoke), Helen Linnell, is setting up Guildford SOUP at the same time as the Boileroom is launching Surrey SOUP.

Soup Launch Flyer 2Helen said: “The idea of SOUP was started in Detroit in the USA five years ago, and the aim was to raise funds for local communities there.

“They held a pot luck dinner and people brought along food, there was entertainment for children and artists showed their work. People put some money into a pot and then there were short presentations by community groups who were in need of funding. Then everyone voted and the winning group went away with the cash.”

That first event was the launchpad and since then further SOUPs have, to date, raised more than $100,000 in Detroit alone. The idea has spread across the USA and is now gaining a foothold in the UK.

Helen points out that it is a very simple and easy to orgainse event, all you need is the enthusiasm and input from community minded people. She said: “There are lots of small groups and projects that need funding and sometimes they don’t know how to go about it or feel hesistant about filling in lengthly application forms.

“SOUP is a quick and fun way to do that. Come along to our launch and you’ll hear more about how it works.

“Surrey SOUP will act as an advice network to help others across the county so they can make their own SOUPs work. The Guildford SOUP will setting up micro-fundraising events across the borough with the first one in the new year. I’d like to see SOUPs in every ward.

“We will be following the American model, but will be Anglicising some of the themes to make them work here.

“At any one SOUP meeting there are usually three groups or organisations, or even a small business, who make a pitch for funding. And very importantly the event brings everyone together for delicious food and entertainment. If you have an idea with a social focus and have struggled to get funding, then SOUP is for you.”

The launch event is open to anyone who is interested in finding out more about SOUP and how it works, volunteering for SOUP, setting up a new SOUP in their community or pitching for funds or joining the SOUP committee. SOUP runs on volunteer time and contributions.

There will be a children’s corner for those bringing young ones. Everyone is welcome, but places are limited due to the capacity of the venue and you will need to book your place online via the Boileroom website and also find out more about SOUP.

You can call 01483 440022, or 07468 690834, for more details.

The cost of attending is a discretionary donation on the door and all proceeds will go towards equipment and resources for SOUP as well as towards the first Guildford SOUP fund.

If you would like to volunteer to help out or able to supply anything for the event, you are welcome to have a one-minute pitch to promote your business or organisation (as per the SOUP rules) as well as taking along any promotional material to share with other guests.

Soup Launch Flyer 29th November 15-2


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Responses to Get Ready For SOUP – A Micro Community Fundraiser That’s Coming To Guildford

  1. George Potter Reply

    November 23, 2015 at 1:01 pm

    Brilliant to see this happening!

    I first heard about the concept last year and it really is great that it’s coming to Guildford. Hopefully we can get one set up in the Onslow area soon.

  2. Neil Mason Reply

    November 23, 2015 at 2:49 pm

    Excellent idea and I hope it flies, no reason why it shouldn’t as it offers value, community spirt and healthy eating.

    Good luck Helen and great “soup dragon” article…….

    Regards from your good friends at FurnitureLink

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