Cardies urged to contact MPs to join next week’s event in Parliament
The GCA’s #Cardmitment campaign to promote Christmas card sending is already hitting the high notes, being embraced by publishers, retailers, celebrities and MPs – and there’s still plenty of time to join the chorus line.
Happening on Thursday, 29 November, the GCA has organised a special event in Parliament’s Portcullis House for mps to highlight the importance of the greetings industry, the sending of Christmas cards, and safeguarding the Royal Mail’s six-day-a-week delivery service, while asking them to sign the #Cardmitment Pledge detailed at the bottom.
“We at the GCA have written personally to all 650 mps inviting them to the drop-in session but, to add further weight and engagement, we need card publishers, retailers and suppliers to also write to their own MPs to urge them to join in,” said GCA ceo Amanda Fergusson.
To make it super easy, a draft letter is available to download on the GCA website, which you can then personalise and send to your local representative – with separate letters to home and work if they’re in different constituencies. To find out who your local mp is, and their contact details, click here.
Comedian Pippa Evans has turned her improvisation and musical skills to supporting the #Cardmitment campaign, kindly re-recording the brilliant ditty she wrote celebrating the delights of Christmas cards that debuted when she hosted the recent Henries awards ceremony that all cardies are free to use and share on their social media by clicking the link or see above to hear her dulcet tones.
Meanwhile, cardies have been taking the campaign to the people with the Caring At Christmas initiative, where they’re visiting care homes around the country with stacks of cards to help the residents choose and write to their loved ones.
The GCA’ s Amanda had a rewarding time at Homestead in Twickenham: “The lovely team at the care home were so welcoming and it was very special helping residents choose and write their cards. A highlight was seeing two residents, who needed help remembering names, sign cards ‘love mum’ – I can only imagine the joy of their children receiving their cards and seeing their mother’s writing.”
And yesterday Jakki Brown, GCA council member and md of Max Publishing, visited Berehill Care Home in Whitchurch, Hampshire, where her father is a resident, arrived armed with a selection of donated cards from The Art File, Paper Salad, Raspberry Blossom and Stormy Knight along with pens donated by Pentel.
“As my visit coincided with Dad’s 87th birthday it was especially poignant,” Jakki said. “In common with many of his fellow residents, Dad has advanced dementia, but it came across loud and clear that they all loved selecting just the right card designs for their loved ones and friends.
“One lady was so keen on a beautiful card from The Art File that she asked me to write it to her!”
There’s masses of social media activity with #CardmitmentCampaign Instagram page and the #Cardmitment hashtag while the Xmas Cardies group of 20-plus like-minded independent greeting card retailers are busily igniting their customers’ passion for sending Christmas cards with weekly posts.
And the Just A Card grassroots campaign, that’s dedicated to helping creative businesses and indie stores, has also joined in, turning the negative of the M&S advert where Sophie Ellis-Bextor torched her unwritten Christmas cards – a scene which now appears to have been cut from the tv showings – into the positive of an Instagram post asking people to tell how they love sending and receiving, making, selling and decorating the house with festive missives.
The mps’ #Cardmitment Pledge – the GCA message to mps is to ask them to make a #Cardmitment by:
- Agreeing to lead the way by sending Christmas cards this year.
- Visiting an independent card retailer, publisher, and/or designer in their constituency to remind the public it still only costs 75p to send a card by post.
- Support the GCA’s Caring At Christmas campaign, where members are visiting care homes around the country to help residents write and send cards.
- Help ensure the second-class postal rate stays pegged to inflation.
- Offer support to local posties and safeguard the Universal Service Obligation, including the six-day-a-week delivery.
The plan is for these pledges to be presented on a giant card, currently in design by Sarah Jackson, owner of Stormy Knight and a GCA council member, that will be printed by The Sherwood Group ready for MPs to sign on 29 November.
And each representative will receive a leaflet, printed by Loxley’s, giving more details about the importance of the greeting card industry, its contributions to the UK economy and the positive benefits of sending and receiving cards on people’s mental health.
And Arena is keen to hear about MPs visiting GCA members so do send info and pictures via email@example.com.