Hi, I am Maria Baker and I was the first Blueprint 22 Patron. I was delighted to be asked to take on the role and again for the second year and hope I can continue to raise the profile of the organisation in Brighton and Hove.
I have lived in Brighton for over 33 years and have a background in hospitality and supporting the LGBT and BME community locally. I am well known in the business and community sectors and believe I can help promote the organisation to other professionals. I am currently the BME liaison officer for Brighton and Hove LGBT Community Safety Forum and a grant panel member for the Rainbow Fund, which supports local LGBT groups.
In the past I set up the Beacon Players to support Sussex Beacon and it’s HIV/Aids work and have been involved in a range of charity events to support this cause including Walk for Life. I was involved in helping Accessibility Matters at Pride 2014/15 and more recently 2016 where Blueprint were also involved in helping on the parade and running the family tent, enabling disabled people to attend the event. I have a large social media following and will use this to spread the word about Blueprint 22’s amazing work and will support the young people in their individual fundraising efforts. I have recently been distributing and collecting Blueprint shakers in the attempt to bring in some money that can help Blueprint in smaller ways. I have given these to local businesses and pubs in the Brighton area. I have also managed to get quite a few businesses and people to sponsor an award for the Blueprint Awards this year which I am very excited about attending. I will also be organising some fundraisers very soon. I have been inited to the trustees meetings now too which is a great way to make contact with everyone to share ideas and make things happen!
I am still very committed to making a big difference and hope to exceed the young people’s expectations. A lot more people have been asking me about Blueprint and what they do recently and that makes me very happy!