After an enforced hiatus, the Young Fabians boat party set sail once again, raising money for HOPE not hate in the process. Nick Spooner caught up with the organiser, Victoria Parrett.
For some those words might instill fear; picturing the combination of wobbly sea-legs and fridges full of chilled booze resulting in a flailing arm, flapping to maintain balance, sending DJ equipment scattering in all directions.
But for the members of the Young Fabians, their annual boat party – consisting of an evening trip up and down the Thames – swaps Ibiza-style debauchery (we assume!) for a more politically focused evening of speeches, policy discussions, music and, this time out, a fantastic raffle to raise money for HOPE not hate.
For those not in the know, the Young Fabians is the youth section of the Fabian Society, Britain’s oldest left wing think tank and membership society which was one of the founders of The Labour Party back in 1900. We caught up with Victoria Parrett, the Young Fabians Social Officer and architect of the 2021 boat party, a few days after the event – a respectable enough time for any ill effects of the evening to wear off – to hear how it all went.
Clearly happy and excited by how the evening had panned out, Victoria began by explaining how the Fabians “have social events throughout the year, but the big one is the boat party. Obviously we couldn’t do it last year, so this was kind of ‘the big return’!”
Going for it in style, Victoria chose the biggest boat available from the company, and packed the maximum capacity 150 people (all COVID safe of course) onto the boat for the party, which culminated in a raffle with prizes including a meal for 2 at a London restaurant, a “How’s my tone, hun?” shirt from Rosen Allin-Khan MP and a number of excellent (though we say so ourselves) HOPE not hate books.
“When we’re making money for our own things, it always seems right to raise some for other causes too,” said Victoria. She was also pleased with the way in which the Young Fabians network has developed over the last 18 months: “One good thing to come out of the pandemic for us was that having to do more online events for a while has meant that we’ve become less London-focused and have hubs all over the country now.”
With a pub quiz, Labour conference, events in the Autumn and a Christmas party all still in the offing for 2021, Victoria is looking forward to more Young Fabians events this year “as long as everything stays open!”
Having managed to raise a whopping £405 for HOPE not hate from the raffle, we send a big thank you to Victoria and everyone at the Young Fabians for their support!
If you’re inspired by this blog to raise money for HOPE not hate, check out this page for more information.