What it's like to be a... Hospice Fundraising Manager

by Murray Easton
Hospice Fundraising Manager, Glasgow

Murray Easton

I should start by saying that there is no such thing a typical day for a fundraiser. The variety that fundraising naturally brings is one of the prime attractions to working in the charitable sector – for me and for most of the people I know.

I am based at the Marie Curie Hospice, Glasgow and it is an honour to be the fundraising manager for this world-class facility. I have a small team of three and we are also responsible for fundraising for our wonderful team of Community Nurses throughout Greater Glasgow and Clyde, Lanarkshire and Dunbartonshire.

There is no way our team of three could do this on our own! We work closely with colleagues throughout the organisation and we are fortunate to have excellent volunteers that come in to help us with administration and research as well as projects like the Great Daffodil Appeal or the Blooming Great Tea Party and events like our Ladies Lunch and Lights To Remember service. The importance of volunteers to Marie Curie cannot be understated – quite simply we couldn’t function in the way we do without them.

There are many things I love about being a Hospice Fundraising Manager:  the chance to use my skills to make a differece to others , the level of responsibility, creating and responding to opportunities and meeting amazing people  – those that benefit from the care  Marie Curie provides, their family and friends, the staff, volunteers and supporters. Getting to see the best in people is just incredible and when an event or project that you have been working hard on comes off successfully then the buzz is just brilliant.

Preparing for our big event

People collecting for the Great Daffodil AppealMarch is a busy time for Marie Curie as we have our Great Daffodil Appeal. We have 120 Daffodil collections/events booked in for Glasgow, Lanarkshire and Dunbartonshire. This presents us with wonderful opportunities to raise awareness and funds for Marie Curie  in the region, tying in with what is going on across the UK. It is a great time to be working for or supporting the charity as awareness is at an 'annual high'. It also presents the challenge of recruiting, developing and managing a considerable number of volunteers (around 800) to ensure these collections and events take place!

I often liken the Great Daffodil Appeal to a huge jigsaw puzzle. We need to bring all the pieces (locations, dates, people, materials) together to make up the puzzle. Sometimes that can happen quite easily, at other times it can be a lot harder and take considerably more planning, time and quite often a stroke of luck.

The comparison to a jigsaw puzzle could be applied to fundraising as a whole – we’re doing a great job at Marie Curie , we are helping a lot of people (over 35,000 in 2012) and thankfully we have the support to do that. Our next challenge in fundraising is to raise more funds help even more people – we need to, so there is always a puzzle to solve and we are always searching for someone or something to help.  So if you are reading this and fancy helping then please get in touch.