Our team: Age UK

Paul Farthing, the director of fundraising at the charity for older people, takes us behind the scenes of the charity's fundraising department

Paul Farthing
Paul Farthing

How many fundraisers are there in your team?

There are 88 people in the team: 13 are based regionally, the rest of us are at our office in central London.

What do the fundraisers do?

The main areas we focus on are legacies, individual marketing, major donors, events, corporates and communities. I took up the role two years ago after Age UK was created by the merger of Age Concern and Help the Aged. Since then we have completely rebuilt our fundraising programme. When I first arrived there were a lot of different activities going on, but I decided to change that and focus on a few large activities rather than lots of little ones, ending things like international challenges and our golf day. Some of these were not giving us enough return for the amount of staff time they needed.

How much do you raise?

Last year, we raised £46m and spent just under £10m on fundraising. This financial year we will raise £50m. We will raise £23m from legacies this year, but we are seeing really fast growth in corporate fundraising, events and major gifts.

What's in the pipeline?

We've launched a lot of activities recently, including our 10k series of events, our Vitality Ball and a partnership with the energy company Eon. Next year, we've got some new events and we are also in the process of building our digital programme.

What's it like in the office?

People have responded well to doing new things and there's a lot of energy, which is helped by our open-plan environment.

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