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High hopes for new charity

Simon Pitts’ interest in charity work was sparked by a family illness when he began fund-raising for a sick relative.

He became a professional fundraiser in 2010 after being made redundant and now faces his biggest challenge as a member of the newly formed London North West Healthcare Charity raising money for the Trust’s hospitals and community services.

Simon’s is the Community Manger within the six person team focusing on staff, grateful patients, family members and local businesses as potential fundraisers

At present, the trust receives around £800,000 a year in wills and donations and the Charity’s goal is to be more proactive.

“We’re starting from scratch but the team brings a lot of experience to the table so we’re excited to get stuck in,” said Simon who previously worked at Barts Charity.

“It’s a completely different setup but the fact that we have a blank slate is a great opportunity. People want to donate and fundraise for their local hospitals but often don’t know how. Our job is to help facilitate and support those activities.”

One of Simon’s proudest achievements was helping to set up the Transform Trauma Appeal to raise money for the Centre for Trauma Sciences at The Royal London Hospital.

It was subsequently championed by the Sunday Mirror which ran a series of articles on its work and has raised more than £350,000.

Simon added: “The more LNWH Charity are integrated within the Trust and staff know what is happening, the more effective we can be so please come and talk to us.”

He cites a lost opportunity in a previous role when Star War’s actor John Boyega was so impressed with the work of a children’s ward he offered his support.

No-one told the charity team about his visit or took his personal details and a potentially valuable fundraiser was lost.

“These people are real influencers and have a huge reach on social media. A good example is rapper Professor Green who was our Transform Trauma Ambassador. His Appeal video was seen by four million people. That sort of reach is invaluable.

“The job definitely has a feel good factor and its great being able to tell departments we’ve successfully helped raise money for equipment they need. Who wouldn’t like to do that?”

For details, email lnwh-tr.charity@nhs.net or call 020 8869 3367

 

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