Jelly events for home workers
were invented in 2006 by two IT freelancers in New York who were chatting one day about the drawbacks of working from home.
Mainly getting sick of the same old four walls and missing the company of other people.
Wouldn’t it be a great idea, they thought, to get a group of home workers together in one place with free wi-fi access for work and refreshments.
So that’s what they did in their apartment. Oh, and called it Jelly because they were eating jelly beans when they were struck by inspiration. (Thank goodness it wasn’t cabbage).
In the short video below you can hear what John Scott, creative content coder, thought of his first Jelly experience in Frome, Somerset:
Jelly events were soon happening in apartments, coffee shops and offices across the US. Then it spread to Europe including the UK, where Jelly takes place in a number of towns and cities.
To find out if it’s happening near you or to start your own, visit the Jelly Wiki, where you can see videos about the Jelly concept.
Jelly events are free and democratic. Anyone can hold Jelly anywhere, you just need to find a suitable space with free wi-fi access, desks or tables (and chairs, obviously!) and facilities to buy or make drinks and snacks.
Bath Jelly events first took place in October 2009 at the JikaJika coffee shop in George Street where Jellyers were given sole use of a large table and two small tables at the back.
It’s good for the coffee shop as the home workers, freelancers and digital nomads who frequent Jelly tend to be enthusiastic coffee drinkers and of course we all need to eat.
More thoughts on Jelly in Frome, Somerset, from Tim Osmond:
Frome Jelly events started in November 2009 at The Old Church School, Frome, Somerset. The Old Church School is a coworking space where desks and office space are available to rent by the hour, week or month at astonishingly reasonable rates.
Gavin Eddy, the owner, has an interest in Mozzo, an ethical coffee company that supplies the coffee machine in the kitchen. So good coffee was available at a reasonable price, and Jellyers whose stomachs rumble as lunchtime approaches brought their own sandwiches.
Jelly is often publicised through Twitter and Eventbrite, where you can advertise events and reserve places at no charge.
The beauty of Jelly events is that no two occasions are alike – it all depends on who turns up and what their skills and personalities are.
The Bath event was an extremely sociable affair, loads of chat and connecting with new people, maybe because we were in a social environment.
Frome Jellyers started out by being very industrious and the chat didn’t start until lunchtime. But both times expertise was exchanged and opinions aired, all very good for the skills and mental health of those attending!
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