Focus: Fundraising - Me and my charity

Pauline Cavilla has been a freelance voiceover journalist for five years and works for organisations such as the London Underground and the BBC. She has volunteered for Girlguiding for five years, organising activities for her local Brownie group for girls between seven and 10 years old.

Why did you choose Girlguiding? I was a Brownie when I was younger.

I had a lot more spare time when I started freelancing after a career as a broadcast journalist, so I went on the Girlguiding website, clicked on the button to get involved and was contacted by somebody soon afterwards.

They asked me which group of girls I was interested in and identified one in Ealing, where I lived at the time.

I started off as a helper and then became a Brownie leader after one of the leaders left.

How many hours of your time do you donate every week? I spend an hour and a half every Tuesday from 6pm with my group. I have done it for five years.

I have 28 girls in my group, which takes quite a lot of time and manpower.

Once a term I get together with other leaders to get the planning done and find ideas for activities. If I see a guide dog in the street, for example, I get in touch with the local trainer to arrange a visit with my group.

I also do publicity work for them. People often contact me when they want to organise a fundraising event. I will then write a press release for the local press to let them know about it.

I also help to raise awareness of the need to recruit more leaders. Unfortunately, very few people are available during the day, especially between 4pm and 5pm, to look after younger groups such as the Rainbows. I am more flexible because I can choose the hours I work, so I help out a Rainbows group as well.

Do you make donations too? No. I give my time only. I organise fundraising activities sometimes at supermarkets, where the girls help with packing bags and collecting money. It's always popular.

Do you support other charities? Yes. I make a monthly donation to Cancer Research UK - a relative of mine died from cancer.

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