Tomorrow marks the beginning of my charity insights placement with WildHearts. For the next four weeks I will be based in their Glasgow office working on many different and exciting projects. You can follow my progress exclusively and free of charge on this blog!
WildHearts is a charity built on the ethos of promoting and enabling the practice of ethical and sustainable business. The organisation runs a wide selection of enterprises, all centred around these common values.
One of these enterprises is the Micro Tyco challenge, which I took part in last year with my team Quintessential. This is an entrepreneurial competition targeted at schools, universities and businesses in which the objective is to put your business ideas into practice and raise as much money as possible over a month.
I have just completed the first week in my Charity Insights experience at the YMCA London South West.
YMCA White House
My project is based around an evaluation of a new centre: the YMCA White House, following the YMCA’s takeover of the Hampton Community Project’s White House.
So far I have interviewed staff (both new and those transferred under TUPE); started analyzing the new policies and procedures and met with senior management regarding the success of the takeover.
Once I have collated my findings, it’s time to start writing a report, with the guidance of the Director of Human Resources. The project report aims to help senior management with possible future developments at the centre.
Today marks the end of my second week at Rathbone, and the halfway point of my placement.
Most of my work this week has focussed on a new fundraising project, a quality assurance scheme for youth clubs which provides them with funding and a badge of excellence that they can show to local authorities, funders and young people to showcase their impact in the wider community.
It consists of three levels, from Bronze to Gold, the first of which the charity already achieved last year. It is now aiming to achieve the remaining two before the end of the year. To this end they will submit proof that they fulfil every one of the requirements, of which there are more than 80 and encompass diversity and equality, monitoring and evaluation, health and safety, and more.
In this blog I thought would write a bit more about the background of why I came to choose the CDP water team for my Charity Insights internship and how CDP communicates its work, as I think this is one of the most vital elements to its output and an area I imagine a lot of people could be interested in working in.
So first off, why do I think water is so important?
This year, the World Economic Forum listed water crises as the biggest Global Risk in terms of impact, based on a survey of nearly 900 global leaders in business, academia, and government.
After four weeks of effort and hard work, I have finally reached the end of my internship with Asha. In this final week, I finished my project report – 6 research papers, full of 100s of statistics and images all summarised in 10 pages. My report highlights the severity and importance of youth unemployment and the need for skills development programs in India. I am currently waiting for feedback from the project leader to make any final changes required before I end my involvement with this project for Asha.
The report forms part of a bigger set of papers that will be presented to various organisations – Asha’s project partners – to ensure that Asha gets the help and recognition required to make an even bigger impact than at present.
My second week at Samaritans has been largely populated with reading and organisation.
I’ve received some responses to the survey I designed last week, which is promising, and hope to get some more soon. The branch at Hereford is fairly small, so I don’t anticipate a huge amount of responses. However the volunteers who have contacted me seem very keen, so we’ll see!
In my briefing for the volunteers I also asked if they would be interested in taking part in some interviews, which would be either face to face or over the phone. Thankfully the response to this has been rather positive, and I have a few lined up for the following week.
It has been a long and productive week, having had no less than 3 review meetings! By the end of last week, I had read through 5-6 key papers in the fields of youth unemployment and skills development challenges facing India. My task for the rest of the internship is to condense that information into a succinct 10 page report – no mean feat considering I have read more than 200 pages of interesting, useful and relevant information in addition to all the statistics collected. I am making good progress on the report and am on track to finish it by the end of the week.
As my first week working with Rathbone comes to a close, I’ve found a few minutes to blog about some of the things I’ve done and would like to share with you.
My first day at Rathbone was spent getting acquainted with staff, facilities and the projects I’ll be completing over the course of my placement. I soon felt at ease and part of the team: the charity has only four full-time staff working at the Old Library site, who were all extremely welcoming and helpful, taking time to explain what their roles in the organisation entail and the many services offered by Rathbone.
My time being based at the Collegiate Academy Trust is now over. The resources I have created will hopefully assist lessons and revising students for years to come!
The resources I have created cover some of the trickier areas of geography, such as rivers, exam questions and volcanism, topics that even the most talented geographer can find testing at times! Working with these areas created an extra challenge, not only to create the resources in the first place, but make them as interesting and enjoyable as possible.
As you can see I’m only on part 3, so, what’s to come in the final chapter?
As my first week draws to a close, I’m beginning to feel a little more confident with my project’s structure and its aims.
Following discussions with my supervisor and sending off the relevant documentation (I don’t know what I expected, but the ethics form was a bit of a nightmare!), I have designed and posted my questionnaire. It is my hope that this will give me a better idea of what encourages a person to volunteer with Samaritans.
I have also attended a volunteer information evening to meet some potential listening volunteers and make them aware of my project. Thankfully they were very welcoming and seemed eager to be involved.