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MEND Scotland: Freshers Fair at Harriot-Watt University

MEND Scotland: Freshers Fair at Harriot-Watt University

Categories: Past Event Articles

Wednesday October 13 2021

We had never before worked with Harriot-Watt University, they also seemed a little further out of the centre of Edinburgh so a little off our radar. But Freshers Fairs were looming large so we reached out and they came back with a resounding yes, please come to our fair!

So, on the morning of Friday 10th, September 2021, the Scottish Regional Manager along with Aeisha, one of our Edinburgh working group volunteers, rocked up to Harriot-Watt Uni at what can only be described as an unreasonably early time considering the 18 months of lockdown and work in our PJ’s. But rock up we did and got the first-ever MEND Scotland Fresher’s Fair set up in around 30 seconds. Which left the hour until the fair opened for us to twiddle our thumbs.

But then the fair opened with a flourish and we thought yes this is it, but the freshers avoided our side room as though they couldn’t see it and didn’t know we were there. Which they didn’t. So, the DJ booth across the room cranked up the tunes, but still no takers. But never fear Aeisha was there and swooped in to rescue the day as she got on the phone to all her contacts at the Uni and started a buzz.

Soon it was time for Jummah and Aeisha had secured a meeting with the Chaplain, who was a friend of old, and only too happy to provide quite a substantial mention of MEND in his sermon. Highlighting who we were, why we were there and how we could be found for further information. We were overwhelmed and very grateful. But there is more, Aeisha the superstar had also arranged a meeting with the ISOCs president and other key members of the Muslim Union. The meeting went well and they were keen to learn more about MEND. We were only too happy to fill in all the blanks and provide lots of information.

We thought we had done well and the day was a success, however, the best was still to come. Before the day was out the ISOC’s president came to visit our stall to confirm that they were extremely impressed by MEND and would love to partner with us moving forward. We were could not believe it, from a university with who we had had little contact at the start of the day to a mention at Jummah, shout out on social media and agreement for partnership work with the ISOC. What a great day all around and all down to the amazing networking skills of our volunteer Aeisha!

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