Social Care Curry Club

Love curry? Love social care? You are in!

Tag: care

Calling all hosts – June 5 eat-up

It’s that time again, the stomachs have started grumbling, the distant whispers of the relative merits of bhuna or jalfrezi can be heard if you listen really carefully, and the tweets are starting to pile up asking about the next curry club. Social Care Curry Club will return on June 5 2014 and we’re now at a stage of requesting hosts so please do get in touch. As ever with curry there aren’t really any rules except no sales, and you must pass the love social care, love curry test. If you can say yes to all of those then you’re welcome.

Birmingham

We are trying to spread the hosting around a little, so if you’ve hosted more than twice before please try to pass your responsibilities onto someone new! We also would much prefer pairs of hosts, if you don’t know someone that’s fine, we’ll get you a partner in crime but inclement weather and other unforeseen circumstances have meant we’ve lost several hosts on the night/just before – we know it happens, so we’re trying to plan for it. In fact on one fateful night last year the amazing Tim stepped up to the Scottish curry club mantle after we lost not one, but two hosts, due to flooding. So, pairs it is.

If you’d like to host please add your name and location (exact venue if you know it or town if not) below in the comments section and we’ll set the eventbrite page up for bookings. Some of you have already offered publicly and privately, please add a comment here or DM again and we’ll work it out. There’s a post that goes into the role of host here, it will probably answer every hosting question you have, if it doesn’t then please send us a tweet or leave us a comment.

JuneSCCC

Social Care Curry Club September Round-Up

Wow, what to say, where to start. Thank you all so much for supporting such great Social Care Curry Club eat-ups last week. We are still buzzing at the enthusiasm, energy, commitment and positive vibes that surrounded our eat-ups across the UK and in Canada.

Ruth, the editor of Community Care pulled together a blog post the morning after the night before and we were delighted that Social Care Curry Club made it to their front page. You can read it here. What follows is a largely pictorial record of our first ever consecutive eat-ups. We would very much welcome your input too so please feel free to add a comment or tweet us your highlights, and of course any learning points, we are keen to keep improving.

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First up was Vancouver where Ernie hosted 16 friends and colleagues including

Screen Shot 2013-09-10 at 23.49.58Vancouver Vancouver’s conversation snapped by host @ejbaatz. Then once our Canadian curriers were tucked up in bed the UK action started to develop:

CardiffCardiff’s calm before the curry club storm snapped by co-host @spinjayGlasgow Mother India’s menu snapped by @BonklesoulGlasgowFashionAccompanied by some fashion advice from co-host @Iandubya snapped by @C_Lightowler Screen Shot 2013-09-10 at 23.58.46

SouthamptonPreserving twitter anonymity if required with amazing masks in Southampton! Snapped by host @JaxRaffertyLeeds The lovely Leeds curriers from @lo_jay

CanterburyCanterbury host @AdelinaCoHe with a curry that needed a big reveal! Taken by co-host @UK_JamesBrightonBrighton seemed rather posh with an amuse-bouche between courses, snapped by @IndeplivingLondon London however opted for a buffet, seen here in full swing, captured by host @BPotter38ManchesterManchester included a pair of newly-weds Mel and George snapped by co-host @Carey_Bamber along with a crowd of curriers ManchesterGroup BirminghamThe Birmingham contingent appear to have stuck to liquid refreshment!! Snapped by co-host @EddieC10 and in a later post we’ll share the result!

For now we’ll round this post off with some of the feedback tweets, please feel free to add your thoughts to this post too and don’t forget to pop 5 December into your diary now.

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Good luck curriers

When Matt and I initially discussed Social Care Curry Club we envisaged a handful of people coming together, to talk about social care and enjoy a curry. It was intended to be a relaxed and casual interaction, no presentations, no sales, no pitches, just people who cared about social care coming together.

We’ll let you into a badly kept secret now, we completely underestimated the appetite and interest that there would be. Times are hard, psychologically and financially, this isn’t exactly the best climate to try and introduce a concept of edible networking. Yet so far our simple idea has seemed to grab people’s attention. The proof will be in what happens over the next 24 hours and whether the appetite remains for future eat-ups, but if the interest so far is anything to go by we seem to be onto a good thing.

In two short months, when lots of people have been taking summer holidays and we’re always warned not to try and arrange anything, this has gone from a throwaway chat on twitter about who we’d most like to have curry with, and grown into the curry monster that it is today! So what does success look like so far? Well:

  • we have had a couple months of conversation about curry with some out of this world currytastic puns and now have 550 followers on twitter
  • we have been encouraged and supported by our network of curry lovers to grow this idea from a gathering that rotated around the UK to one that pops up anywhere globally
  • we have twenty volunteer hosts who will meet and greet on the night, who have liaised with curry houses and punters and carried the responsibility on their shoulders
  • we have had over three thousand hits on this blog so far
  • we have three spin offs that we know of @OTCurry, @PharmacyCurry and @SchGovCurry
  • we have contacted Norman Lamb and Aileen Campbell and are optimistically in negotiations about having a Social Care Curry Club eat-up in Westminter and Holyrood
  • we have twelve UK eat-ups in Birmingham, Brighton, Bristol, Canterbury, Cardiff, Chesterfield, Dorchester, Glasgow, Leeds, London, Manchester and Southampton, and
  • we have one international eat-up in Vancouver.

We are still getting bookings and expect one or two last minute cancellations, but at this point in time 233 people will come together tomorrow. That’s over two hundred people who love social care and curry and living testament that sometimes simple ideas work. Have a great curry night wherever you are and don’t forget the hashtag #socialcarecurry

September eat-ups names

Welcome Vancouver

Hello Canada MapWhen we started Social Care Curry Club we never, ever, considered that people would be as interested as they have been. We are completely blown away with the interest and support for such a simple idea. Yesterday we stretched our eat-ups to double figures when Brighton joined the UK list of curry club gatherings.

Today something even more wild than that happened! Ernie got in touch to say that they were thinking of arranging a gathering in Vancouver! The term social care isn’t used over there so they have called their curry eat-up Connecting Over Curry, we’ll have a blog post from them in due course, but you can also book to join them if you’re based near Vancouver or are holidaying or conferencing in Canada. They are meeting up on 4 September, more info in the link.

It has began to feel a bit like we may have underestimated the pull of the social care curry! In a few short weeks we have over two thousand hits on this blog, over 400 hundred followers on twitter, eighteen volunteer hosts, ten UK and one international eat-ups, and 165 people meeting up together in September. All with only one membership criteria, love social care and love curry, and one rule – don’t sell anything.

Once again thank you all for your support and please do drop us a tweet or leave a comment if you’d like to organise a social care curry eat-up where you are.

*Map based on Blank World Map Slate File by $200inaire

Hello Brighton!

Last night we reached double figures when Brighton joined the curry club party. There had been a number of people asking about Brighton a few weeks back, but yesterday Susan and Kathryn volunteered to host a gathering, so talk turned to action and at this stage in time we have eight people gathering on the 5 September to eat curry at the seaside. Book a ticket here if you’d like to join them.

British_Islands_Sept2013TenPins

It really is that simple, if you’d like curry and your area of the map is looking a bit empty then drop us a tweet offering to host, with the name of your preferred curry house, and the rest will magically sort itself out. Kathryn, one of our Brighton hosts is only visiting, she doesn’t even live there but what a great way to ensure you don’t spend your evening holed up in a hotel room with a crusty sarnie for tea.

Come on people, give it a try. What’s the worst that can happen? People don’t sign up and you don’t get curry this time but you know you tried. So if you fancy it get in touch, looking at the map I think it would look even better with a flag in Devon or Cornwall, North Wales, the North East or Ireland!

Hello Minister, fancy a curry?

I’ve just reached what could be considered a seminal moment in my life! After years of study, research and work I’ve emailed a Minister for State for the first time. Better still, he asked us to. What could be important enough for this you ask? Why, curry of course!

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Screen Shot 2013-08-10 at 13.31.54Obviously we were delighted to do so and very much hope that we’ll be able to arrange for the Minister of State for Care and Support to join our ranks of volunteer hosts, that so far include: AdelinaAmandaAngela, Anne MarieCareyEddieGuyHelen,LornaPeterJackieJamesJemima and Jon. The email that has gone to his office is as follows:

Screen Shot 2013-08-10 at 12.15.36We’ll keep you all posted on any replies. For now though please keep spreading the word and encouraging people to come along, we’re closing in on 150 people meeting up in September, so thanks to you all for your support and our hosts for their efforts.

Clwb Cyri Gofal Cymdeithasol

Dragon Pin

A week ago we really wouldn’t have thought we would be sitting here sharing that our first full Social Care Curry Club has taken off as much as it has, today we’re absolutely delighted to share that we’re heading to Wales – the capital, Cardiff to be precise. The intention of Social Care Curry Club was always to listen to our audience and be responsive, while ensuring we weren’t developing some sort of model that required ourselves to spend a lot of time, well not too much time, on ensuring it was a success. To that end we initially intended to just have one gathering somewhere in the UK, and hold it in a different place each quarter.

However the social care sector suggested otherwise, everyone wanted a piece of the action, and one curry gathering in one place just didn’t seem fair given that it would inevitably mean some people were excluded. So, our approach was to ask for volunteer hosts in a local area. These hosts have kindly agreed to take on the responsibility of booking the venue and turning up on time on the day to ensure that there is someone to greet people are they arrive. We are anticipating that many people will come alone, and despite some pre-existing and rapidly developing twitter connections, it is still quite daunting to just pitch up to a room of strangers when the only thing you have in common is a love of social care and a love of curry. We are aware of the difficulty that will present to some people and so are incredibly grateful to our hosts who will ensure that there is a friendly face waiting for you.

So what has this got to do with Wales I hear you ask? Well the first Welsh curry club gathering epitomises the self-starter spirit that we’ve been lucky enough to tap into. Peter and Anne Marie both separately asked why there was no Welsh eat-up planned and volunteered to help organise. The rest is history, that simply Wales joined the mix and we now have eat-ups planned in three countries on 5 September in 9 different locations: Birmingham, Bristol, Canterbury, Cardiff, Glasgow, Leeds, London, Manchester, Southampton. You can book your tickets to any of the locations through the eventbrite page here and you can learn more about curry club here.

NB: The translation for this blog post came from the ever unreliable google translate so if anyone would like to correct it (or alternatively confirm it, which would be a small miracle in itself) please let us know!! UPDATE: With thanks to Thom Phillips for the advice on syntax, correct translation is Clwb Cyri Gofal Cymdeithasol.

Book now 5 September #socialcarecurry

Just want to start this post by saying a huge thank you to all of you for your support for Social Care Curry Club.

What started as a simple, but brilliant idea, of Matt’s has continued to grow and we’re delighted to let you know that there will now be eight consecutive eat-ups on the evening of 5 September. You can click on any of the following locations to be taken to the eventbrite page to reserve your space:

Birmingham – Blue Mango

Bristol – Myristica

Canterbury – Kashmir Tandoori

Glasgow – Mother India’s Cafe  STOP PRESS: Change of venue to Mother India

Leeds – Mumtaz

London – Chutneys

Manchester – Zouk

Southampton – Jehangir

We’d also like to say a huge thank you to all our volunteer hosts. Having hosts is quite an important part of the rapidly evolving model, on one level it means a local contact can book the curry house and saves us liaising with them all, and perhaps more importantly it means that everyone who turns up will be greeted by someone, which we hope will go some way towards encouraging anyone who is unsure about pitching up alone to just do so. So a huge thank you to: Adelina, Amanda, AngelaCareyEddie, GuyHelen, Lorna, Jackie, James, Jemima and Jon and if you feel like buying them a drink or a poppadom on the night I’m sure they’ll appreciate it.

Without wanting to get too PC about things, we’d like to mention language!! We really want Social Care Curry Club to be accessible and engaging to anyone who meets our criteria – Love curry? Love social care? You’re in! We are delighted that people are as enthused by this idea as we are, but we’d like to ask people to share information about curry club without ‘inviting people’. No-one is invited to social care curry, there are no invitations, you self invite! We’ve seen a few twitter interactions where people are concerned that they’re not ‘expert enough’ and others where they’ve ‘not been invited’. This is a fledgling venture, there are no social care curry experts here, there are no invitations, it’s really simple, if you love curry and love social care then please do come along. Any questions then please feel free to add them here, or talk to us on twitter @socialcarecurry or with any of the hosts above.

Finally, we’ll be using the hashtag #socialcarecurry in the run up and on the night to connect up between venues, if anyone can multitask enough to eat curry, chat and tweet. It also means that people who can’t make any of the actual eat-ups can join us remotely. We know it’s not ideal, it’s quite long for a hashtag, but hopefully it’s easy to remember and it will support engagement. So, over to you all to get booking. Thank you.

Let’s make this happen 5 September

I’m sure any of you reading this blog are already aware, but just in case you’re not, we have been delighted at the support and interest for Social Care Curry Club so far – there are already 10 people booked to attend the Scottish event in Glasgow and 73 votes were placed for preferred location across England.

Of course the proof of success will be in us actually getting the next eat-up organised for 5 September 2013. In our last post we asked people to indicate their preferred geographic location for gatherings. The votes have been counted and verified, two rogue votes have been identified (well the voters confessed, we’ll be honest there wasn’t much investigation) and they didn’t influence totals so we’ve left them in, and the results are as follows:

North 23 votes: 10 Manchester, 7 Preston, 5 Liverpool, 1 Don’t mind

Yorkshire 8 votes: 2 Bradford, 2 Leeds, 2 Sheffield, 1 York, 1 Don’t mind

Midlands 11 votes: 7 Birmingham, 1 Derby, 1 Leicester, 1 Wolverhampton, 1 Don’t mind

South West 5 votes: 2 Bristol, 1 Plymouth, 2 Don’t mind

South 8 votes: 4 Southampton, 1 Basingstoke, 3 Don’t mind

South East 18 votes: 11 London, 5 Canterbury, 2 Don’t mind

The next steps are down to you guys. We’re now looking for a ‘host’ in each of those regions, who can commit to attend in the place with the most votes. They will need to identify a curry house that will be open on 5 September.  Once that is decided let us know on twitter and we’ll set up the eventbrite pages allowing people to book tickets. This ensures you can book a big enough table.

There are two decisions that still need making – where to hold the event in Yorkshire – will wait for a host to volunteer and we’ll go with their preference. Also whether those who indicated Canterbury would like to join the London contingent or have a gathering of their own. Again I’ll wait to see if a host volunteers and take that as an indication.

Some people have already offered to help but we’ll wait for the next week before pleading with people/deciding where we have a choice, but please do let us know if you’d like to host (and if so in what region).

Scotland’s first Social Care Curry Club

There have been several twitter conversations about where best to hold the first Social Care Curry Club meet up in Scotland. The consensus decision (amongst those who were chatting) was to go for Glasgow, and Mother India’s Cafe was suggested a couple of times as a venue. STOP PRESS: Mother India’s Cafe don’t take bookings so we’ve moved to Mother India in Westminster Terrace.

Hopefully this will work for enough people to make it a viable meet up. The next date is Thursday 5 December so be sure to save that date if you can’t make this one.

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There is only a loose plan for how this develops, you can read more about the idea behind the club here. At the moment it looks like a number of people will gather together for a couple hours on Thursday 5 September, to talk social care and enjoy a curry. We can firm up exact timings closer to the date but for now we’ve set up a booking system on eventbrite so we can gather an indication of numbers, with a kick off time of 7pm.

George will be coming up for this one, but don’t let that put you off, hopefully there may well be some other people travelling north across the border to join us too. You can book your tickets here, it doesn’t cost anything for a ticket (although you’ll need to fork out for your own food and drink) but booking will allow us to know numbers so we can get a table. You’ll also be able to see who else is coming:

Book tickets for Glasgow now

If you’d like to know a little bit more about it then you can read up about the first meeting in Birmingham on this post. Any questions drop us a line here or on twitter.