Send a message of hope and postivity
Ordinarily, CHICKS’ retreats would be filled with children and young people from far and wide,…Read more
Meet Caroline Burkie, CHICKS Director of Fundraising! Caroline joined CHICKS last summer and heads up our Fundraising Team who have the challenge of raising the £1.8 million needed this year to fund breaks for hundreds of children.
What made you want to become a fundraiser or choose fundraising as a career?
I always knew I was going to spend my time helping people. I became a fundraiser because I wanted to use the education, upbringing and opportunities that I was so fortunate to have to make a positive difference. .
What made you want to join CHICKS as Director of Fundraising and Development?
I actually had my first interview for a Community Fundraiser at CHICKS 8 years ago! I didn’t get the job and instead went on to get one of the most rewarding jobs I’ve had for a visual impairment charity. In this role I learned a lot about fundraising and it geared me up to approach CHICKS all these years later so that here I am now as Fundraising Director. It just goes to show how important it is to be resilient through life’s knocks, the power of choice and how important perspective is. I think of all the children we take on a break and how so many don’t have the supportive family telling them to not give up and that what might feel like failure, usually has a silver lining.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
The people, the outcomes, finding solutions and making things happen. I also feel inspired reading the weekly update our Respite break Leaders send us from each break they run.
What is challenging about the current fundraising environment for CHICKS?
There are many charities in the UK making incredible changes for children and young people, and that can make it challenging to get the attention of new supporters. We need more wonderful and dedicated people to do whatever they can to help us say 'yes' to more children coming on a respite break.
How do you and your team overcome these challenges?
I think one of the most important jobs we have as fundraisers is to tell honest stories about the children who need a respite break, no matter how hard that is. I consider this our duty. When you hear a child has been abused by their primary carer at the age of 8, whilst also trying to protect their little sibings, a voice in your head says ‘This is wrong and I must do something to help’. As fundraisers we are here to create a bridge of hope. In fact I think we're all here to create bridges of hope. That together we really can make a difference to a child’s life , and make it very clear that every single child matters.
What is your vision for the team over the next few months/year, what do you hope to achieve?
That each person and the charity continue to grow so that we can better meet the complicated needs of children who so desperately deserve to come on a respite break.
What difference would you say fundraising for CHICKS makes to young people across the UK?
What might seem like the smallest fundraising event really, really does make a difference. When people choose to support CHICKS, they are deciding in that moment to help a child realise that someone really does care about them and their future. We simply cannot accept a child onto a break if we do not have the funds. Incredible individuals can build the momentum of positive change. So whether a parent introduces our Dance the Day Away fundraiser to their child’s school or someone leaves a gift in their Will – every action, that our supporters make, small or big, is changing a child’s life and that, I think is remarkable.
To support CHICKS by fundriasing, volunteering or donating please click here - you really will make a difference to a child's life.