Introducing the IMEX Challenge team

Introducing the IMEX Challenge team

The IMEX Challenge is a biennial humanitarian initiative designed to give meetings industry professionals the chance to work side by side in a physical challenge that will benefit the host community. The second Challenge takes place from 2-4 July 2012 in Ljubljana, Slovenia. The IMEX Challenge team is working to support CUDV Draga – a residential Care Centre for mentally and physically handicapped children and adults – and the Slovenian BeBee campaign, which supports the habitat of declining bee colonies.

The Challenge includes the construction of a 30 sqm beehouse in the Care Centre’s grounds, renovating a greenhouse and landscape gardening. To make learning about beekeeping easy for people with disabilities, the Beekeeper’s Association of Slovenia and the Care Centre Draga have drafted an easy-to-read textbook about beekeeping. The IMEX Challenge will therefore help mentally and physically disabled children and adults to expand their horizons and come to know new activities.

IMEX Challenge team

Meeting professionals joining the IMEX Challenge will be digging deep figuratively as well as literally, renovating the greenhouse and building a beehouse and an educational path for people with disabilities living at Slovenia’s Care Centre Draga.

Meeting professionals joining the IMEX Challenge will be digging deep figuratively as well as literally, renovating the greenhouse and building a beehouse and an educational path for people with disabilities living at Slovenia’s Care Centre Draga. Among the IMEX Challenge volunteers are representatives of Ovation Global DMC, Iceland Congress, Scottish Exhibition + Conference Centre, Silversea Cruises, Poland Convention Bureau, ExCeL London and Chair, Meetings Industry Meeting Needs and fairservices.net.

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“This years IMEX Challenge has definitely left me buzzing ... I am super excited to be part of such an inspirational initiative. I must admit the idea of building beehives will be a challenge in itself although I wouldn’t expect anything less from the creative IMEX Team! I’m fully dedicated to getting my hands sticky with honey and Making it Happen,” says Sarah Kavanagh from Ovation Global DMC.

The IMEX Challenge offers meeting professionals an exciting, fun and rewarding way of doing this, as well as a new way to meet new industry friends and make lasting new contacts. “I’m delighted and excited to be joining the team on this year’s IMEX Challenge. Both ExCeL London and ICCA are huge supporters of initiatives such as this and it will be a great chance for our industry to come together to achieve something so worthwhile,” confirms James Rees of ExCeL London and Chair, ICCA UK & Ireland Chapter.

In the spotlight, Ana the Carniolan honey bee

If you are curious what the Slovenian partners have prepared for the IMEX Challenge, we invite you to watch the newly released IMEX Challenge video.
Watch the IMEX Challenge SLOVENIA video, starring Miha Kovai, Director of Slovenian Convention Bureau, Tatjana Radovi, Head of Ljubljana Tourism / Convention Bureau, Gorazd ad, Director of Go.Mice, Valerija Bužan, Director of Training, Occupation and Care Centre Draga, Anton Tomec, Slovenian Beekeepers’ Association and in the spotlight, Ana the Carniolan Honey Bee.

The video tells the story how the IMEX Challenge will enrich the lives of mentally and physically disabled children and adults living at the CUDV Training, Occupation and Care Centre in Draga. To help expand their horizons and teach them new activities, a new beehouse will be set up to raise eight bee colonies with up to 60,000 bees. The protégés of the Care Centre Draga will be therefore responsible for the upkeep of a half million bees, which is a quarter of the Slovenian population.

High level support

The President of the Republic of Slovenia, Danilo Türk, Prime Minister of Slovenia, Janez Janša, and Mayor of the City of Ljubljana, Zoran Jankovi, pledge their support to the three-day humanitarian event.
The IMEX Challenge is honoured by the President of the Republic of Slovenia, Danilo Türk, the Prime Minister of Slovenia, Janez Janša, and the Mayor of the City of Ljubljana, Zoran Jankovi, all of whom have pledged support to the three-day humanitarian event. As the Prime Minister underlines: “Beekeeping wisdom says that people should learn from bees. The bees demonstrate that diligence enriches, courage strengthens and unity empowers. Surely this wisdom of the bees will actualize in its full at the IMEX Challenge.”

Legacy of IMEX Challenge Slovenia

The value of the IMEX Challenge Slovenia cannot be measured in simply economic terms, nor even on the basis of services or time devoted nor in the number of supporters. The significance of the project lies in the knowledge and skills acquired by the protégés of the Care Centre Draga which will enable them to engage in new activities, prepare new products and possibly also generate an income. Therefore the legacy of IMEX Challenge will last well beyond the July event.