What is the best thing about your role?
I love working within the community, in schools, with churches and people who are passionate about making a difference. It’s inspiring, and working with so many people from different walks of life keeps things exciting.
What is the most challenging aspect of your role?
There is a real lack of understanding about homelessness and a lack of empathy for homeless people, which can make engaging new people a challenge.
What is your charity’s main income stream? What are the positive aspects of that and what are some of the challenges?
Evolve Housing + Support get a lot of its income from trusts and statutory income. This is positive because we’re able to secure large sums of money to cover entire projects for fixed timeframes. This helps us plan and provide long-term services that homeless people can rely on. However, the major cuts in government funding mean we can no longer rely on these alone. We’re working creatively to overcome these challenges and adding community and corporate fundraising as well as challenge events to our income streams.
What advice would you give to a new fundraiser just starting out?
My advice would be to know your cause inside out and engage with supporters on an individual level. People want to feel valued, so make sure they are personally thanked and that anything they do for the charity is shouted about. Acknowledgement and gratitude for support goes a long way and might even get them talking to their friends and family about it. Our fundraisers are our best ambassadors.
What do you do to switch off from work?
I love to exercise. Often my evenings after work are spent doing a spin class or going for a run. We have some really amazing people doing challenge events for us. It’s great being part of the person’s journey from training, engaging with their fundraising and prepping for the event itself. I really enjoy being there with them on the day and celebrating their success. You get to know the person really well and feel like you’re a part of what they have achieved.
What qualities do you believe are important in a good fundraiser?
Fundraisers need to be trustworthy, energising, passionate and creative. The reality is that fundraisers need supporters to be on their side, and the best way to achieve this is to be human. They do of course need to have great knowledge and passion for the cause, but on the whole they need to be someone people want to work with and enjoy doing so.