The Challenges Of Fundraising

 

I am very proud to say I started with Wesser over 2 years ago and it has been the most amazing and challenging journey.

One of the most valuable things I have learnt is positivity attracts positivity and it is a must in this job.

On a daily basis we deal with external factors we can’t control but we can overcome. The weather being the most common! As I say, skin is waterproof and it means more people are at home to talk to. You may even get offered a nice hot drink on occasion by supportive members of the public.

Some days you might encounter a high amounts of elderly people; just remember that sometimes some of these guys haven’t really spoken with anyone for days and seeing a friendly face might brighten up their day; Yes you might not recruit a supporter but don’t you just feel amazing by giving someone the opportunity to smile? We all have parents/grandparents so just think about them when that happens and how you would like them to be treated!

One thing you will find a lot is people that are not really interested in what we are doing. That said there are also loads of people that take a real interest in what we do and our charity partners. Meeting these people is incredibly rewarding, especially when they show a real appreciation for fundraisers doing what often can be a tough job.

It also can be hard/strange initially working and living with the same people, but look at the positives! You have the support of your team whenever you need it and each team becomes like a little family. Much like living with family it doesn’t mean you need to do everything together, making your own space and plans is also important to keeping a positive work, life balance.

All these challenges pay off when you realise how much you have raised for Wesser’s amazing charity partners and the great projects and activities it has helped fund. It is something to be truly proud of.

Remember a fundraiser is an eternal optimist and if you are proud of what you do and you have a smile on your face you will succeed!

Article by: Irina Alves – Fundraising Coordinator

Wesser Fundraising Seminars

I’ve worked in Wesser for nine months now, and during that time I’ve always looked forward to the seminars. Held every few months, I’ve now attended four of these.

It’s a testament to what a great Company Wesser is, that they invest greatly in training, equipping and rewarding their employees, and that is exactly what these events do.

From the outset, these weekend events are a great opportunity to meet not only fundraisers and team leaders from across the country, but office based staff and Management too. And the top banana himself, Martin Wesser, makes great effort to speak to as many people as possible, encouraging and giving praise where due.

Over the four seminars I’ve attended, I’ve been involved in presentation battles, learned a most annoying chant/rap with actions, received invaluable information from St. John Ambulance England and Wales and also received First Aid Training. There’s also been many sessions where extra training has been given on the various aspects of the job like ethical fundraising, the presentation and a unified close.

A highlight is always the awards dinner in the evening where, after eating a great meal, certificates are given out to those in the Company who have been doing very well. These certificates can include subjects such as “Team of the Month,” “Best Average Donation” and “Team Leader Promotion.”

The Wesser seminars are a vital part of the job where all in attendance will leave feeling much more a part of something big and special, that they are making a difference, and going back to their teams knowing they are more equipped than they were before.

Well done Wesser.

Article by: Scott Morrison – Fundraising Team Leader – Beckington Team

Why do I do this job?

So the question of the day……

Why do I do this Job?

I think it’s a question that’s asked of many in any line of work; for some it’s money, for some it’s a passion, for others it’s a belief in doing the right thing, for me it’s a combination.

I did my own first aid training at the age of 6 as it was a necessary part of me growing up with family that had disabilities and were at times in need of those skills. So, for me I have a true belief that every child should have the knowledge to save a life.

St John Ambulance are the very reason I am still alive today.  I never thought I’d be in need of first aid but nothing brings your life into more focus than nearly losing it. At the age of 22 I had the idea of getting fit and decided bike riding was the way to go, I lived in beautiful coastal North Wales so scenic routes to work and getting fit bonus. But, one serendipitous morning in April my life nearly came to an abrupt halt when my heart decided well for want of a better expression it didn’t like me very much. I count my stars everyday that those lads drove out of the depot early that day because it they hadn’t I would not be here today. If it wasn’t for the training St John provides in the workplace the man that saved my life would not have been able to do so, the St John paramedic that took me to hospital much to my disgruntled displeasure as I wanted to go to work would not have been called and the last 10 years of my life would not have happened.

For the last 2 years I’ve been a fundraiser and developed into a team leader. I’ve put my skills to use in life changing situations. I’ve provided training to others and I’d like to think I’ve saved lives. Yes I’ve raised money for an amazing charity but for several reasons: 1) It’s the right thing to do. 2) I truly believe in the cause and what we accomplish on a daily basis and 3) probably most importantly for me, without people like us St John would not be able to continue to save lives.

So why do I do this Job?  Because I’m a product of the skills, determination and necessity that is First Aid.

Everyone has a reason for things they do in life and what they let influence their paths in life. What will your legacy be?

Article by: Gill Murnane – Wesser St John Cymru Wales – Team Leader

Becoming a Fundraising Team Leader

I remember feeling like I wasn’t really ready for the Team Leader role, it took a lot of belief and support from those around to even begin to feel like I could fill those boots that seemed so big. The element that attracted me to the role was that sense of importance, knowing that you can help and guide someone to bring out the best of them not only in the workplace but also as an individual. I loved the idea of creating and building a strong team of individuals and living and working in harmony.

The training I had with Compliance and Best Practice Manager – Joey proved how my vision could be possible. It taught me so much about the admin side of becoming a Team Leader and what the role entails but most importantly elements you learn over time like positivity, ‘ask don’t tell’ approach (which by the way, is SO hard) and even how every individual learns in different ways, and how to cater to them.

Since this training, I have felt completely supported in the process of becoming a Team Leader and I have never felt alone. I know I have support from James (Snr Campaign Coach), Joey and Leanne (Fundraising Campaigns Assistant) in the office whenever I need some assistance with something I may not know or have forgotten. Team Leader is a fantastic responsibility and can provide you with great life skills and also bonuses when you and your team do well! Lead by example and they can only follow.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Article by: Faye Lightfoot – Wesser Waltham Abbey Team Leader

 

A life-saving cold caller!

It goes without saying; there are times when knocking at people’s doors trying to gain supporters and donations can get tough. There are occasions where sometimes the rejection and comments can get to you, especially when you’ve done this job for a long time. But there is one thought that has come to my mind several times. And it’s this very thought that keeps me going despite whatever reactions I may get from day to day:

We knock around 100 doors every day, 5 days a week. We speak to around 175 people per week, and give them a First Aid Guide. What many of us may not think about is: we don’t know, and may never know how many lives WE have saved just by the act of giving that first aid guide to someone. Because, we don’t know how many of those estimated 175 people a week may actually end up reading that guide and using the information they learned to save a life. And if it wasn’t for you or me giving them that guide – that life may not have been saved.

When you think about that – it really hits home that we are not just doing a job knocking at doors and trying to get donations from people – we are all LIFE SAVERS.

So if you’re feeling low or not doing so great – just change your thoughts… you’re not going out to work – you’re going out to save lives!

Article by: Scott Morrison – Team Leader – Wesser Beckington Fundraising Team

The Sully Fundraising Team Visit Cardiff City FC to help St John Cymru Wales

95 minutes of watching 22 men kick the wrong shaped ball on a cold Saturday afternoon wouldn’t be what I would normally call fun. 30 men playing with an egg shape ball on Sunday though, where St John Cymru Wales volunteers were once again out in force in the fan zones throughout Cardiff was more like it.

So how and why were Gill, Dean, Nicole and myself (the Sully team plus one) there?

We had been asked by Amy, at St John Cymru Wales headquarters if we would like do some fundraising at the football match. The reward for saying yes and doing it for about 90 mins before the game, was to be given free tickets to watch the game.

Amy and Stuart met us there. We donned bright yellow tabards and received our collection buckets. We then entered the stadium and were paired up and assigned to an area.

Although we were under cover the concourse was cold. Shaking the bucket is not allowed ( even though I’ve had several shaken under my nose in the past).

Of the many things gained from the experience, one that stood out was the respect that many donators had for St John Cymru Wales. They would often stop, turn around and reach into their pockets and wallets and happily put a contribution in and comment “You Do A Great Job.”

We knew that their feelings for St John are based on decades of seeing dedicated volunteers, not just at the football matches but on the streets of Wales.

There is something we can take into our role as fundraisers for Wesser from this. Sometimes what we do seems to be disrespected. Sometimes it feels like a battle between quality and quantity targets, but much like the football game we saw later there was effort, mistakes, recovery and success. At least for the visiting team on this occasion.

Isn’t that what we are? As far as the doors we knock, we are the visiting team. It takes effort, we make mistakes, we recover from negative reactions and we can always improve our success rate.

By the following afternoon 15 visiting Welshmen had the edge and the victory in the right shaped ball game. Whatever the result or score ( in our case £362 pounds) what we can and will take with us is this simple piece of inspiration. We are all “doing A Great Job”

Article by Mark Lloyd – Wesser Fundraiser