To be honest I didn’t even realise that my journey at MEA has just pasted the half point a few days ago, not sure if it’s because my concentration on work or just because of that theory which states you feels time goes faster as you grow older. Anyway, let me introduce you what I have done since my first post.
After armed myself with related knowledge and learned what the organization do, I began to do researches that would benefit both MEA and myself. Nowadays solar PV is becoming a popular option for consumers to cut their energy bill as the price of Solar panel dropped significantly since 2011(from £11000 to around £5000 for a 16kW panel).
Before starting my 4 weeks at the K&C Foundation I had sorted a plan of action with the Foundation about how I could work with them and contribute to their existing schemes. However, this was all prior to the horrific Grenfell Tower Fire. The K&C Foundation has been instrumental in collecting funds raised to help the victims and those affected by the fire and making sure that 100% of the money donated reaches those in need. Usually in the little K&C office, there are 5 people who work and who take in under 50 cheques a month. Due to the fire this drastically changed.
On the Monday of my fourth week at The Brilliant Club, the organisation held a Mid-term review. The entire team of approximately 60 people gathered in a single conference room and each department (Finance, Operations, Evaluation etc.) held a brief presentation to communicate their work and its outcomes to other departments. This was a unique experience in that it helped me complete my picture of how the entire organisation functioned and how different departments complement each other.
I had two major tasks to complete throughout this last week: to conduct interviews with former tutors from The Scholar’s Programme which I had scheduled in the previous week and to write up the report for the 2016 London Provider Feedback Survey according to the organisation’s brand and style guidelines.
At the start of my third week at The Brilliant Club (TBC), I learnt that I would not be able to interview project providers on The Nuffield Programme. The reason for this was most that although the Nuffield Research Placement scheme is run by TBC, it is funded by the Nuffield Foundation who did not approve of the project. This came as a slight shock because it meant that a significant part of the work I had done over the course of the past two weeks could not be used. However, there was fortunately a second option – I could quickly set up a different interview project where I would be to apply all of my recently acquired knowledge about the science of a research interview.
My first week at Clarity passed by quicker than expected. But that could be the result of starting on a Tuesday and finishing early on the Friday. But before I dive into the events of my first week at the charity, let me provide you with an insight into what they’re all about.
Clarity is a social enterprise that produces home care and personal care products. The company has charitable status as the majority of their workforce has some form of disability. The charity uses the money that they make from the sale of their products to support and provide employment for those with disabilities.
My Charity Insights internship is at The Brilliant Club – a charity that aims to increase the number of students from under-represented backgrounds at highly-selective universities in the United Kingdom. The Brilliant Club office is located in the Kensington Centre on Hammersmith road, next to Kensington Olympia. The entire London branch of the organisation is housed in a large open-space office which is shared together with Future First and has a seating capacity of approximately 100 people. My motivation to undertake a placement at this organisation stemmed from my previous experience of working for People In Need – a Czech charity focused on educating children from excluded Roma communities in the Czech Republic, and from my long-held belief that is it through education that growing world inequality should be tackled.
Full Fact, the charity I’m currently working at, is an independent factchecking charity that “…provide free tools, information and advice so that anyone can check the claims we hear from politicians and the media.” They do factchecks in a variety of areas from the NHS to student debt, and factcheck claims made during the Prime Minister’s Questions (PMQs), among others.
While Full Fact factchecks claims in many different areas, they have yet to touch claims/questions made regarding the metaphysical realm, such as “What is life?” or “To be, or not to be?” or “I think, therefore I am.” Such questions are best left to the reader to consult Quora.com, consult a Philosophy professor, or ponder about over lunch.
Educational inequality is a huge problem throughout our education system. At primary school, only 1 in 3 children from poorer families achieves the expected levels in reading, writing and maths at age 11. At secondary school, 33% of pupils on Free School Meals achieved 5 A*-Cs at GCSE compared to 60.5% of all other pupils. Of these students, 1 in 4 make it to university compared to nearly double the amount of all other students. These students have a 1 in 1500 chance of making it into Oxford or Cambridge whereas 1 in 20 students from private schools go on to study at these universities.
I’m working with an educational charity called Team Up whose mission is to help end educational inequality by delivering tuition in Maths and English to students from low-income backgrounds.
It is the 9th of July and it has been exactly one week since I started working in Marches energy agency. Thanks to my previous visits I managed to get used to the working place fairly quickly and made myself comfortable in a nearby accommodation. So overall speaking it’s not a bad start and I’m really enjoying this whole experience.
In case you didn’t know, the charity I am working with (MEA) is an energy charity located in Shrewsbury, it’s an organization full of talented and passionate people who are dedicated to fight local fuel poverty and climate change. My role comes in to research the new green energy applications which can be potentially used by MEA in the future, also to look for new possible services MEA could bring in the future by learning from other bigger organisations.
So here I am writing my ultimate blog for Charity Insights at the end of my internship at Marylebone FoodCycle. It has been a month full of new encounters, impactful experiences and blissful moments shared with the people I have met on my volunteering journey. I have written my last report and sent the last few emails as part of my project, and it is now time to reflect upon my experience.
Working for Marylebone FoodCycle at St. Paul’s Church allowed me to get an insight into what working for the charity and social sector is like; it gave me a deeper understanding of the dynamics involved in such organisations.