When the difference you make is larger than life
The decision to lend time and experience to a philanthropic endeavour often comes from a sense of wanting to give back. Stepping up to a leadership role, bringing skills to a trustee board or making a specific commitment to a charity can feel like a meaningful way of supporting the causes we care about.
As fundraising consultants, we are lucky enough to enjoy a front-row seat when it comes to witnessing the power of volunteer leadership. We also know that the success of a project or programme nearly always depends on the vision and commitment of those steering the ship. And, whilst the responsibilities that volunteer leaders take on are myriad, the rewards can be just as rich and plentiful.
‘When people shape their lives around the things that matter to them, extraordinary things can happen,” says Gifted's Chairman, Andrew Day. “It’s never too late to develop a personal sense of philanthropy and share your expertise with an organisation whose values align with your own.”
A little bit of elephant magic
For Gifted’s CEO, Amy Stevens, it was this kind of synergy that led her to join the Southern Thailand Elephant Foundation (STEF) as a trustee, back in 2021. As a lifelong animal lover, she was keen to combine an interest in wildlife with her professional skills - and the opportunity at STEF was too good to miss. It was also one that brought a shot of pure elephant magic when she visited the Charity’s new animal hospital near Khok Kloi in Phang Nga province, this Christmas.
“For me, visiting my veterinary and Trustee colleagues in Thailand, and of course meeting some of the elephants we have helped, brought home the difference we can all make through volunteering,” says Amy. “It turned the business end of what we do as volunteer leaders into something electric and larger than life. It’s exactly the same within our client teams. Every day, we are fortunate to work with people whose commitment to what they believe in is truly inspiring.”