Digesting Science is a set of educational and interactive activities, run as an event, to explain multiple sclerosis to children aged 6-12. It was developed by the Barts-MS team at Queen Mary University. Below, they share their tips for finding a suitable venue for your event:
If you've run a Digesting Science event before, you'll know that we send you everything you need to run an event, including balloons and tablecloths to decorate your venue. And a speaker so you can play music to create a relaxed atmosphere as people arrive. We've thought about this a lot!
In fact, all you need to run a Digesting Science event, that we can't provide, are families, and a place to put them all in! We have had chats with people who want to put on an event, but have difficulty finding a venue. And with a few Digesting Science events under our own belts, we thought we'd share these tips and tricks for finding the perfect venue.
Go to what you know
Think of all the churches and organised groups (scouts, guides, WI, etc) that you know exist near you. Make a list and set about contacting them. Many will have their own venues, like church halls and scout huts. If they are accessible and big enough, you may be able to use them for the event! If they meet in another space, they can give you the details of how to hire it. You may even get yourself some volunteers at the same time!
Try the local big players
Have you spoken to the local schools, the leisure centre, the hospital, the library or even the local supermarket? All of these places can have accessible, large rooms that they may offer to a community event like Digesting Science. Tesco supermarkets not only have community spaces that they offer for free, but they also have community funds allocated to each store. So if you can't hold your event there, you may well be able to access some funds to hire another venue. It's worth asking!
Ask your friendly internet search engine
If the first two suggestions haven't yielded anything, it's worth Googling. Try 'venues near me', 'community venues near me', 'halls for hire'. Or try these websites:
Advice from Sandeman Events
Natasha from Sandeman Events kindly gave her time to talk to us about finding venues. And she had lots of fantastic tips!