This year’s tea party will be on Sunday 17th May 2020. Due to the current Government guidelines in relation to the coronavirus, Blue Sunday 2020 will be an Online Only event.
It’s incredibly easy to join in and you can find out how HERE.
Join the Facebook Event page (Blue Sunday 2020 on Facebook) for the online/virtual side of things. You can also follow along on Instagram (@tea_party_for_m.e) or Twitter (@theslowlane_ME)
If you don’t have a social media account you can still join in. Please click HERE to find out how.
This year’s JustGiving fundraising page is up and running. You can find it HERE. Once again, we’re asking for donations of the price you’d expect to pay for tea and cake in a café.
The Blue Sunday tea party for M.E. came about after I was too unwell to celebrate my birthday in November 2012. As I was unable to mark the occasion in ways I had before, I asked my family and friends to join me for a virtual party, posting photos and videos of themselves raising a mug of tea and enjoying a slice of cake. It felt so wonderful to feel connected with my loved ones when I was unable to leave the house or have any visitors.
As M.E. Awareness month (May) was approaching in 2013, I started to feel that something was needed to commemorate it. As an M.E. sufferer I am so restricted by my ill health that the ‘conventional’ methods of fundraising, such a running a marathon, weren’t at all appropriate. The success of my virtual birthday party had me hoping I could do the same again as a fundraising event.
So the ‘Blue Sunday’ tea party was born. I invited friends and family to join me online again, only this time I was well enough to have a select few join me in Real Life, for afternoon tea. I asked for small donations of the price people would expect to pay for a pot of tea and a slice of cake in a coffee shop. I uploaded photos and videos of the little event being held at home so that even those stuck in bed on the other side of the world could join in online.
The idea has since been adopted by The ME Association as their official annual fundraiser (Go Blue for M.E.) and I was incredibly moved to receive nominations for a JustGiving award and a WEGO Health Activist award.
‘Blue Sunday’ is now celebrated internationally with other sufferers hosting their own tea parties both online and at home.
The 2015 event raised a total of over £5000 which was split between three charities: The ME Association, Invest in ME, and ME Research UK. As of 2019, we have raised over £13,000 for The ME Association alone.
Related link What have tea and cake got to do with M.E?
Due to the current state of my health, there was no ‘real life’ tea party in May 2019. We still celebrated the day online, with photos and videos shared by people all over the world as they enjoyed tea and cake in the comfort of their own homes. Many people invited their friends and family over to join them for the day to mark the occasion and I was overjoyed (and overwhelmed) that we raised more in 2019 than we did in 2018 despite the tea party being on a MUCH smaller scale. You can read the write up HERE.