Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Your body is a wonderland

Well well well it's that time again

So, as you may know I had a bit of an Epic Fail last month with a glorious silver lining! I won't go over the details again as you all know what happened but it was a bit of a disappointment and a huge shame that such an exciting event and something that raised so much awareness ended up being a bit of a poo-fest.

However, as I have already said, eBay (after a bit of pressure from the papers) came through and helped raise over £2000 in the end! Which was WAY more than I could have raised. Seeing as the whole point of what I am doing is to raise money and awareness for The Autism Trust I am actually a bit over the moon! :)

I am still waiting for confirmation on the final amount and as soon as I have it you will be the first to know!

I tell you what though, this publicity and everything was a bit insane. I have NEVER had this much attention from the male population! I think I racked up 70something Facebook friend requests (only just a few more than I have actual friends!) and I suddenly have twitter followers. I am not sure I can take the pressure of entertaining people for long enough to keep them interested. I think I need a PR Manager! Anyone interested in the non-paying job of being my PR Manager? It involves telling me what to tweet, instagram, Facebook, pretty much control my technological life etc. Warnings: you WILL have to work with me, put up with my wild ramblings, argue me down when I say I don't want to do something (this will be the biggest challenge - I am rather stubborn. My flatmate Kelsey will testify for that!). If you think you can handle all that then please, apply via twitter. In case you wanna find me for anything socially media-ey like then I am pretty easy to find. I am not particularly inventive with my usernames... I pretty much use hopeanscomb for everything. So hit me up, or follow me. whatever the term may be.

So since my last challenge I haven't managed to go down to Polly's Place, which is the centre where the Autism Trust UK work out of, but am planning to go this weekend to meet the lovely Mo Wilson. They not only need the money I raise for them but I try to help out as much as I can. Unfortunately I cannot be there during the week when they need the most help, but I plan to help by writing grant proposals and anything else Mo needs my help with.

If you know anyone that wants to do some volunteering with some amazing people please let me know and I will get you in contact with Mo, they always need extra hands. There might even be something that you can do from home if you can't make it to the centre. I know we are organising an event in May that all hands on deck will be appreciated!

The Autism Trust are special. There has been some comeback at a charity based in the US at the moment that claim to help families affected by Autsim, but it seems now that they are not "helping" as much as they could be.

Children and adults with Autism are so often misunderstood as misbehaving or badly disciplined but with a little understanding and support these children are no different from others. With any child you focus on their strengths, you support them in their dreams no matter how big or small and you are there to create a world around them of love and where they feel safe. This should be the same for ANY child. It seems that some charities have forgotten that it is their job to help support families with this goal. The Autism Trust never loses sight of this aim. They provide so many families with support and share as much knowledge as they can through research they know of or through personal experience. 

Recently they had a "Crafternoon" where families were all welcome to take part in a fun, relaxed afternoon making mothers day gifts and cards. Simple it seem to some of you, therapeutic and an essential socialising opportunity.

There is another side to their centre there and Polly's place is also a shop, selling only handmade gifts made by those with autism or those supporting people with autism. They have beautiful things, perfect for mothers day. Take a look..... :)

So.... I suppose now you want to know what I am up to next. Now I gave people a bit of a clue previously and I suppose now it is all booked and definite I can reveal the plan.

Now this is not so much a big money maker but it is the ridiculousness that is the main point of this one, and who knows it might make some money!

So, the "juice" as my italian colleague loves to say...

On a "secret" date in March I will be posing as a nude model for a life drawing class!

Now in terms of the charity fundraising, I will be donating the money I get paid for the modelling to the charity, I will be doing a collection on the evening and then putting my trust in eBay again and put one or two of the drawings up for auction. 

I am doing this with the fabulous London Drawing (

They have been lovely enough to let me take part in their class where  I will be posing completely naked as a life drawing model. That's right, no clothes. zilch. zero.

I am ok about it at the moment but the time is creeping up and if I really think about it I am soooo nervous about it!

I am not sure if they prefer "curvy" or slim. Figure I should probably cut down on the cake anyway! Stop there being toooooo many rolls and crevices for them to have to draw!

I definitely should have asked the lady about the hair situation. You know what I mean... I am not talking about whether to wear my hair down or in a ponytail here... Ah well, I might just wing it. Figure they will be focusing on my curves and the soft shapes and less on my foliage!!! :S 

Oh my GOD this is going to be terrifying!

Anyway, I will keep you updated on when the drawings are to go online for auction soon enough and in the meantime keep me away from the CAKE!

Have a good week people!

Hope... Out x

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Silver Lining

"Thinking good thoughts is not enough, doing good deeds is not enough, seeing others follow your good examples is enough"

Firstly I think I am going to start this quote entry to my blog a and keep it going. I love a good quote...

Anyway, I suppose you all want to know how my auction and date went, I know we were all VERY excited! :)

Well, I am afraid I have sad news for you all, it turns out that not everyone bidding was genuine. 
My highest bidder when the auction finished on Tuesday 11th at 9am had decided he did not want to pay for his item (me!) and that he didn't want the date either.

As you can imagine I was pretty devastated. Not only was I angry at this guy but also completely embarrassed because I can't now provide that £620 to the charity that so desperately need it. 

Now I tried eBay, assuming that everything on their website was true and that bidding on an eBay item was a binding contract that you were then held to pay for if you won, no matter if you wanted the item or not (I have ended up with items I very much changed my mind on because i ended up as the highest bidder.) anyway, turns out all this was ABSOLUTE rubbish and eBay couldn't do anything. Apparently I can report said buyer but the most this would do is cancel account or restrict it which is next to useless! If anything I was mostly angry at eBay and just soooooo disappointed I didn't have my donation to give to The Autism Trust.....?! :( 

BUT my anger did not last long. The reaction of people has been amazing and it really goes to show that everything has a silver lining. I have had tweets from so many people supporting what I am doing, retweeting my challenges, raising awareness and people donating just to support the work the Autism Trust does. 
My story has made it all over the country and actually accross The Channel to Italy! I mean how insane is that!!?!?!

So, I may not have had a successful challenge this time, but other great things have come out of it. The message is spreading and I also have new support an followers for the rest of my year...

Ooh, now I suppose I should give you a little clue for my next challenge. Date is to be confirmed and details to be fine-tuned but I will be posing at a life-drawing model for a class in London. The payment I get for the evening will be donated to the charity, there will hopefully be a collection on the night and... although I had a bad experience with eBay this time... I am going to try again, and I will be auctioning off one drawing of me..... :S

Now I have no more details so don't get any expectations, especially as I have no idea how good the artist will be! But there we go, a little bit of a teaser to my next challenge! 

I definitely think it will be one of those things that I think is a good idea now, and will be a foolish endeavor when it gets to the day of the event!!! 

Now, I don't have much time to write this blog today because I am off out to a gig. That's right people, I actually have a life besides doing ridiculous stuff for charity! :P

So I all hope you had a lovely valentines day no matter who you were with or what you were doing! :)

I will definitely be keeping you updated very soon!

In the meantime, you know what I am going to ask... Keep sharing, keep spreading the message and keep throwing ideas at me! Remember, I will do almost anything!

Hope.... Out x

Saturday, 1 February 2014

And so it begins...

I would be lying to say I wasn’t nervous about this morning.

It could have gone two very different ways. I could have been inundated with bids OR I could have absolutely nothing, not even a view. LUCKILY it has been the former and I am already up to £100! This is amazing and obviously very flattering or people are just insanely generous and charitable which I hope they are! I will obviously keep everyone updated with the progress. It is a 10 day auction so who knows what will happen!

As some of you may have seen, I made the papers. Ok so it was only the local free paper (although I bought 8 of them!) I have now been in a newspaper and it must have worked as I have had 3 new twitter followers and 2 new facebook requests (this is a big deal for me, especially as I have only just worked out how to use twitter. I figure you just hastag every word right?!). This must mean interest in my auction right?! Cant be a complete coincidence!

So not only did the newsshopper take on my story but a journalist found it and as I type (well probably more earlier today) is attempting to get my story in the Sun and the Dailymail. My original reaction was “OMG WOW!” now it’s more “holy S**T!”. Although all publicity is good publicity right?! Well that’s what the PR people to the stars say! As for being a star, my wonderful colleagues have gone with the “Hope is a celebrity” angle and have been winding me up non-stop. I assume some of you have seen the “dressing room” they created for me. I would like to point out that I was actually working while my fellow colleagues were busy mocking me!  It shocks me how influencial social media is! It has gone a bit crazy, well I think it has, and all I have done is a bit of a story in a very local paper and tweeted a couple of times. I find it incredible and thinking about it, sitting here on the train, people are on facebook, twitter and god knows what new thing that I am not cool enough to know about on their phones. It really is the best way to communicate your message. Think I am going to need an intense twitter course!

As much as I am freaking out a little bit at the cringeyness of this challenge, the support has been amazing! I mean, I have been soooooo lucky with everyone helping at events, sharing links etc but this one has taken it to new levels and I would like to take this moment to thank all those people that are sharing what I am doing whether it be chatting about it with friends, tweeting it or facebooking. I can’t tell you how amazing it feels to have everyone supporting me. It makes a huge difference knowing that I have people believing in what I am trying to do (even if you all also think I am a little bit insane. To be honest I think I might be but I also think it hekps! :D).

Now the soppy part of this blog is out of the way I should probably go back to plugging my ebay link etc. So here is the deal again in case you forgot or are hearing about this for the firt time…

 I have an ebay auction scheduled to start at 9am on 1st February. The link is below or you can search “Valentines Date for Charity”

The auction will last for 10 days and ALL proceeds go directly to The Autism Trust.

Don’t panic, I have spoken to Ebay and they are all cool with it and again are really supportive!

Once the auction has finished I will contact the highest bidder and arrange the time fo the meal for valentines.

We (me and whoever wins) will then spend a lovely evening in London on 14th February and I am very much looking forward to it, whoever it may be with!

So, “that’s the juice” as my lovely Italian colleague likes to say and I think it’s catching on.

Any questions, tweet me, write on my blog..

Hope.... Out x