Featuring… The Really Big Kinda Massive Meetup

Posted on by Jess O'Connor

Lovenotes has been working with Cam Calkoen and his colleagues from the YES Disability Resource Centre in Auckland. Jess caught up with Cam to talk about his current project The Really Big Kinda Massive Meetup.

LN: How did you get involved with Lovenotes?

CC: For a number of years I’ve had the privilege of knowing Amanda Judd and am continually fascinated by her contribution to our world. She loves the environment, and contributes in the most modern, enthusiastic and innovative way.

When she launched Lovenotes I got it straight away, it was a no brainer for us to get involved and give some loving. In a day of fast media and online environments, there’s nothing more inspiring than swapping the keyboard for a Lovenotes notepad and working at a pace that encourages thought.

LN: Tell us about the YES Disability Resource Centre?

CC: The YES disability Resource Centre is a first stop shop for people with disabilities, their family / whanau and service providers. We provide the most up to date information that allows people to navigate through their lives, ultimately living it to the max!
As a centre driven by the significance of networking (the most powerful tool we have) we find ourselves at the centre of innovation for new services that connect people with disabilities to the lifestyle they desire.

LN: So let’s talk about the Really Big Kinda Massive Meetup…

CC: [It is] an epic networking event for young people, people with disabilities, family, whanau, service providers and generally cool people to ultimately expand everyone’s network to make a bigger world of difference.

Dubbed the Really Big Kinda Massive Meet Up, we are prepping this event to be one of inspiration, information, innovation and cohesion. This isn’t to be a network meeting where we sit in circles, but one where we select a series of presenters to celebrate what makes them awesome / what they do, capturing the minds of 60-80 people.

To keep this as a high energy event we are running it Pecha kucha style. Each presenter is required to deliver 20 slides of a PowerPoint presentation in 7 minutes (that’s 20 seconds per slide).

Ultimately we are wanting to form a cohesion between the silos within our sector by sharing the views of those who do not attend the more traditional network meetings facilitated by short-bread biscuits and home-spun jumpers. We live in 2012, it’s time to jazz up the way we interact and connect and form those bridges that allow us to expand our horizons. Facebook and other social media is great but we need to step back to face-to-face communication sometimes.

We select a variety of presenters for each event as a big part of the event is to positively raise awareness around disability, if we’re always talking to the same people and hearing the same thing then both our attitude, innovation and contribution as a whole society stands still.

LN: Did you receive any feedback about the Lovenotes products?

CC: We gave away Lovenotes in our goodie bags and people adored them. I’ve since gone into offices where I’ve seen Lovenotes and it’s like a fusion of art meets stationery. I would encourage as many people to become lovers of Lovenotes and make this service as habitual as rubbish, power, mortgages.

LN: Are you aware of how many sheets of paper you’ve saved?

CC: I’ve been told but I don’t have a connection to stats and numbers. I just like knowing I’m part of something bigger than my contribution.

LN: How did you get into what you are doing today?

CC: Through dreaming big. Hard work, believing in the Law of Attraction, passion and perseverance. Knowing that a life is only fully lived if we are making a contribution to the environment that surrounds us.

LN: Do you have any advice for people who are aspiring to make positive changes within their community?

CC: Just do it, but do it in the way that you want to do it. Don’t worry about what people may think or say and do all you can to merge it into a lifestyle, those who make the biggest difference become the brand. Live it, breath it, be it!

 - By Jess O’Connor

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