Helen and I have been really enjoying reading everyone’s blog posts about their Charity Insights experience. We thought it was about time we also added a post to the blog!
Last week we were able to visit Isabelle, Clara and Kristiana to hear about some of the fantastic work they have been doing with their charities.
Our first visit was to Isabelle who has been working for Rethink located in Vauxhall. The office is located on the fifteenth floor of a high rise building nicknamed “Charity Towers” as it hosts many charities including Macmillan and Comic Relief (it even has a charity recruitment agency inside). There is a great view from all sides of building as you can see! Isabelle has been getting fit walking up the stairs to beat the long queue for the lifts (especially after lunch)!
Isabelle has been working on an online survey to analyse mental health patients’ view of the service provided by their GP. She was able to attend two conferences during her internship – a great professional development experience. Paula, a Senior Policy Officer at the charity was very impressed with Isabelle’s work and how quickly she had picked up the social issues that surround Rethink’s work.
We also visited Clara working in a “virtual office” in Berkeley Square. A glamorous location next to the Bentley and Rolls Royce garages! This was our first visit to a virtual office; they have bookable meeting rooms and a business lounge to work from, similar to a hotel lobby and conference facility. Clara has been working in a very small team with one other Imperial intern and the charity CEO. She has been developing a social media campaign and organising events as well as lots of other tasks. Clara has found that working in such a small charity requires lots of multi-tasking and flexibility! The CEO Brian praised Clara’s efforts and explained how valuable her work has been.
From the glamorous Mayfair we travelled north to visit Kristiana at the dramatically different location of Hampstead Heath. Kristiana has been working with Wild about Hampstead Heath an RSPB project which is funded for three years. As part of the project they have converted old changing rooms into “the Hive” where the project is based. Kristiana has been working as a volunteer coordinator. The project manager Rachel described her contribution as “invaluable” as she has achieved many things that the charity wouldn’t normally have had time to get done. She has solely recruited at least 5 new volunteers with many more potential volunteers in the pipeline. She has also conducted a survey with lapsed volunteers to get their feedback. She has analysed data about where the majority of volunteers come from and which enquiries turn into actual volunteers. Kristiana has also been able to get involved in other activities such as organising and participating in a community festival involving family activities such as pond dipping, painting frogs and making birdfeeders. Reflecting on her experience Kristiana felt it was a great chance to learn about project management and marketing and will help her make a decision about whether to take the year in management as part of her degree.