Its approaching a year since I started working for the CBI.

This year the decade of change is upon us and our corporate themes revolve around People, Place and Planet.

Whoever you are and whatever position you hold or background you are from – the thing you and I have in common are people.

This is my ode to Yorkshire Folk across the region that I see daily. The “people” that make up mine and our communities, the ones we work with or care for or teach or grow businesses with or befriend or look up to or have fun with…people.

Here’s to the girlfriends that meet up at lunchtime, the flourescent corporate cyclist everyone has in the office, cheerful travellers (American in this case) passing through our stations and airports, the children sneaking downstairs for bedtime toast with a panda or the dads strapping naughty toddlers into pushchairs on mummy’s day off, the hardworking musicians and creatives on street corners, the business man on his 3rd cup of coffee as I sketched him (slow down – its not worth it), the weekend football match – who needs a comedy gig when you listen in to conversations at one of these, police on horseback and public services stretched to breaking point, our elderly full of wisdom and pain and the support needed within the system to care for them, the grafting market traders and retailers, the millenial generation running an office from a phone and coffee shop in jeans, our youth – the leaders of tomorrow that need so much support and care and focus (I found 5 different shades of black to capture them!) the corporate presentation and the juggernaut of economy and last but not least the homeless, especially the very young ones I met along the way that remind me of our basic needs as communities and how we shouldn’t have 1 in 2000 Yorkshire Folk without a house to call home.

If we are aiming to change places and the planet, supporting people first in order to achieve those things is crucial.

Its a privilege to see that this is happening in big ways across our region….but there is always a little or long way to go!