Blog

Charity Administration

Charity Administration

I recently worked as a charity administrator, a position I held for five years, as part of my VA portfolio work at Red Desk.  Sadly, we are now wrapping up the charity as a short while back we lost the CEO to cancer.  It goes without saying that I am devastated at the loss of such an inspirational woman and the opportunities the charity gave to young people, but I am very sad to lose the role itself. In this article, I look at the different aspects of charity administration at Barrier Breakers Foundation.

 

Funding

As this was a role for a charity, the flow of the work really depended on funding.  Penelope was an excellent fundraiser and at our weekly meetings, she would keep me up to date with applications and funding that would come in.  This would then allow us to plan which workshops would be run.

 

Building and Developing Relationships

As part of my responsibilities at Barrier Breakers, I would build relationships with existing or new Further Education colleges.  If it was an existing college, I would phone and email my contact to see if they were interested in workshops, how many and when.  If the co-ordinator had left, I would need to find another key stakeholder at the college.  This involved a lot of detective work scouring the website and LinkedIn to find someone in the right position.  The same tactics were applied when we identified new colleges at which we wanted to run workshops.  Depending on the success of the cold-calling, emails and securing meetings, we often adjusted our strategy for the next round of booking in workshops.

 

Process and Procedures

Over the five years that I worked with Penelope for Barrier Breakers, we developed processes and procedures that we followed for booking workshops at colleges.  This included the tweaking of our terms and conditions.

 

Coordination

We had a pool of facilitators that we worked with at the charity and they delivered our workshops at the colleges for us.  Based on their availability, we reserved them for the workshops.

 

Paperwork

You really need an eye for detail in this role.  We had a series of documents to fill in that covered various aspects of the workshop delivery process: information for the college about dates, times and facilitator information and then information for the facilitators regarding contacts at the college and who was attending the workshops.

 

Multi-tasking

Whilst we were liaising with the colleges and facilitators, we were also arranging for the workshop materials and books to be printed and dispatched.  Our charity admin assistant was in charge of this aspect but I regularly checked in to ensure deliveries had been received by the college in a timely manner.  If items had gone missing then we had to contact the courier company and sometimes, resend parcels.

 

Communication

One of the biggest skills I needed within the role of charity administrator was communication.  We kept in constant contact with the college and facilitators to remind them of the pending workshops.  Sometimes there were some last-minute changes that needed to be communicated with various stakeholders.

 

Feedback

Once the workshops had been delivered, we got so much satisfaction receiving the feedback from the participants.  This really made it for us. We could actively see how we were changing the lives of young people through making them aware of soft skills and how to use them to empower themselves for employability or wellbeing.

 

Follow up

We then followed up with the colleges to see how they felt the workshops went and planned our next round of workshops.  We were in contact when more funding was available and so the cycle started again.

 

Putting my role down on paper really doesn’t do it justice.  It wasn’t just about the daily tasks, it was about the people I worked with at the charity and also at the colleges.  After having chance to organise workshops that empowered young people really was so satisfying.  I really hope I can put my organisation and communication skills to good use for more worthwhile charities in future.

Ways to Keep Your Website Updated

Ways to Keep Your Website Updated

We all love a shiny new website: you’ve spent months working with your web designer and copywriter to ensure that it reflects your brand and business, it is packed full of SEO so that it ranks high on Google and looks professional.  Despite that, many businesses just leave it there, once it is out in the world, it is forgotten and abandoned.  However, your website should be thought of as a living thing that needs to be tended and nurtured, and updated regularly.  But how?

 

website updatedWhat should you update on your website?

  • Copyright date – ensure this is updated yearly
  • Team members – add and remove staff as and when they join or leave
  • Financial information – if you display pay rates (London Living Wage for example) make sure it is current. Likewise, if you show a list of charges for your products or services, ensure they are correct too
  • Blogs – Keep these updated
  • Review your website for broken links
  • Plugins

 

How can Red Desk help you keep your website updated?

Red Desk offer various affordable services for the small business owner to ensure that their website is kept up-to-date:

  • Website News and Blogs – we often find that this is the first area to slip when a website is launched. You may have written a few articles or had a copywriter do this for you to kick start your website.  You may have had best intentions to keep this up but your busy life gets in the way.  Red Desk offer a content writing service and we can also post any items that you have written too
  • Plugins – Red Desk have just launched our website maintenance service. We can log into your website once a week, once every two weeks or once a month (depending on the complexity) to ensure that plugins are updated to the latest version.  If we spot something that hasn’t updated correctly, we will monitor this and find solutions when required.  Keeping plugins updated is the simplest way to ensure that your website stays secure and is performing at its best
  • Website Audit – You should review your website every couple of months to check that the content is still relevant. We can refresh the wording on your website, change, add or remove images to reflect the current direction of the business

 

Other helpful articles

We have written other articles which you might find helpful in terms of keeping your website updated:

  • Start up businesses – One of the main ways clients will find you is via your website. We work closely with website designers to ensure your website is up and running in a timely fashion We can also recommend graphic designers and manage your social media and SEO in-house.
  • What to consider when launching a website – we’ve included a few other tips here including using social media to send readers to your website and also how to review the speed of the website
  • Website Maintenance – we also offer add-on services like installing SSL certificates, domain transfer, transfer of ownership and liaising with your IT company

 

If you have a website support requirement, no matter how small or large,  get in touch with mel@reddesk.co.uk.

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