So much more than numbers

Are there 5 or 6 new contributors to Week 2 of Weekly Blog Club’s Year 2? I lost track – but I can tell you that there have been 10 first-time contributors in the first 2 weeks of this year. That’s a lot of new people in such a short time. There were 23 posts in Week 1 of 2013, and 24 posts in Week 2. If I missed anyone out, do tweet @WeeklyBlogClub and your post will be included in Week 3.

There were numbers in the titles of posts in Week 2 as people looked back on 2012 and considered New Year resolutions or hopes (Lesley Thomson’s Kicking it in 2013: Part 1, new contributor artist Louise Atkinson’s 2012 round up, John Patterson’s Ten for 2013, my 13 x high hopes for 2013); or shared 1 day of their lives in pictures (Louise Brown’s My day in six photos); or a family snap (Stuart Mackintosh’s Triple trouble); or trying a new approach to ensuring they continue to produce the quality as well as quantity of work (Phil Jewitt’s One shade of grey).

There were numbers, explicit or indicated in posts such as ages in first-time contributor Lorna Prescott’s x-y coordination; Chris Bolton’s post pointing out a flaw in today’s working methods and proposing a different way of doing things – The email ‘cc’ option undermines the very fabric of society. A 19th Century invention using 21st Century technology; Clare White’s Two ideas for Stoke’s community assets (including helping people who need most help to connect with others). There were dates in Hannah Chia’s look ahead to sporting fixtures in the year (The Sporting Wag’s 2013 Sport Calendar); and a number in Karen Hart’s aim to write 750 words daily (The writing habit).

Samuel-James Wilson was measuring a lot as he worked on placement with Dr. Gerard Lynch [The Red Mason] – Week 2. Mark Braggins was thinking about the tricky subject of measuring one’s social media effectiveness in communicating in Getting the measure of social media. Dyfrig Williams shared some of the feedback Participation Cymru gathers as they evaluate the effectiveness of their work in Derek Walker reflects on the work of Participation Cymru.

But, as is usual for Weekly Blog Club, the posts are about so much more than numbers because our contributors are very real human beings. Many of the posts with numbers and about measuring are also very much about being human, for example, John Patterson’s Ten for 2013 and Stuart Mackintosh’s Triple trouble also contain immeasurable quantities of love for their families.

There was humour as well as love in first-timer Vicky Bannister’s anecdote about her father who has dementia – Is it all just a con? …maybe not. Claire, another first-time contributor showed how extraordinary people can be in her post  Mary Seacole school project, which included both a photograph of astonishing written work by her 6-year-old daughter and the inspiring story of Mary Seacole who, it is reported by the press, is no longer considered worthy of being kept in the National Curriculum.

Jim Crichton thought about what happens if there are robots in a place where the human touch has been considered so important in Robotics in healthcare: hogmanay musing. Derek Barron’s consideration of whether mental health nurses should wear uniforms in A uniform approach (and the subsequent discussion in the comments) focused on how humans can and do connect with each in particular situations.

Jo Smith’s Raising the tone also looked at how people can communicate better in a different kind of work context. Kenny Mcdonald reflected in Wish I knew what I know now… on what he had learned over the past year on social media about communicating with people. Janet Harkin’s look at how to connect and persuade people that an app is worth trying in What Quora says about how to market an app considers the power of numbers for the tiny number who can get celebrity endorsement, and how the majority connect effectively with the most people.

Carolyne Mitchell’s blog would be a good one for Kenny to follow as this week’s contribution – Here’s to social media friends new and old – demonstrates how good a communicator she is (and even includes a recipe for baked ham at the end). Kate Bentham’s post – Information can support families and safeguard children – is inspirational in how focused she is on helping people in her public sector role.

Thank you very much to all those who have read, Liked, commented on, followed this blog (and our members’ blogs), tweeted and retweeted our posts as well as to those who have contributed posts. If you want to join in, more about how to can be found on our About page.

What is our [entirely optional] theme for Week 3? How about snow or the more difficult weather such as Australia has had recently? I may be writing about social media and local communities in response to a post someone else contributed not long ago. Most weeks, most contributors ignore it, so it is there to start you thinking if you are stuck for inspiration (we also thoroughly recommend browsing through past posts – something is very likely to spark off an idea).

Louise Brown will be looking after Weekly Blog Club over the next week (till Sunday 19th January) and Kate Bentham is taking over for the following week. We are always keen to see more people helping on the administration. Although it is quite a lot of work, it is also very satisfying (and I always find it a privilege) to look after Weekly Blog Club because we have such wonderful members, and we do welcome volunteers. You can find out what is involved on the Admin info page, and you can suggest a week (or even weeks) that you could do on the Who looks after Weekly Blog Club when page.

I am looking forward to reading Louise’s and Kate’s tweets and posts during the next fortnight. I always enjoy the different ‘voices’ they bring to Weekly Blog Club, and would love to see more different voices during the next year.


Janet E Davis.

Summary of Week 2 posts

x-y coordination by Lorna Prescott.

Is it all just a con? …maybe not by Vicky Bannister.

Mary Seacole school project by Claire OT.

The Sporting Wag’s 2013 Sport Calendar by Hannah Chia (aka The Sporting Wag).

Dr. Gerard Lynch [The Red Mason] – Week 2 by Samuel-James Wilson.

A uniform approach by Derek Barron.

Kicking it in 2013: Part 1 by Lesley Thomson.

2012 round up by Louise Atkinson.

Triple trouble by Stuart Mackintosh.

The email ‘cc’ option undermines the very fabric of society. A 19th Century invention using 21st Century technology by Chris Bolton.

Getting the measure of social media by Mark Braggins.

Raising the tone by Jo Smith.

Robotics in healthcare: hogmanay musing by Jim Crichton on the Ayrshire Health blog.

One shade of grey by Phil Jewitt.

Derek Walker reflects on the work of Participation Cymru by Dyfrig Williams.

Two ideas for Stoke’s community assets by Clare White.

Ten for 2013 by John Patterson.

Wish I knew what I know now…  by Kenny McDonald (aka @MarCommsKenny).

Here’s to social media friends new and old by Carolyne Mitchell.

What Quora says about how to market an app by Janet Harkin.

The writing habit by Karen JK Hart.

My day in six photos by Louise Brown.

Information can support families and safeguard children by Kate Bentham.

13 x high hopes for 2013 by Janet E Davis.


Weekly Blog Club was set up in early January 2012 to encourage people to blog regularly, and especially to encourage those working in and with the public sector, charities and voluntary organisations in the UK to find their own 'voice' through writing.

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