As someone who has overcome an entrenched drug issue, I am passionate about ensuring we have the resources to give people a chance at living without drugs and alcohol and enjoying a productive and healthy existence.
Early in my career, I faced judgement regarding my past. It only served to spur me on even more to support others who face the same.
Today, I have to fight to tell the full story of those affected by substance abuse. The child abuse, neglect, poverty and trauma that understandably become drivers in an endless effort to numb the pain.
Completing my IoF Diploma in Fundraising has enabled me tell that all important story in a way that effectively resonates with funders and influences on a greater scale. It has given me more credibility as a fundraiser and a recognised qualification and skill set that I can use within other charities and sectors.
The drug and alcohol sector budgets are decreasing year on year, so now more than ever we are reliant on fundraising in order to help a surprisingly large section of the population.
I have written four successful bids since gaining my qualification. The bids have focused on telling funders how their grant will change the life course of our service users. And not just their lives, but the lives of their families and their children.
Our beneficiaries are challenging to fundraise for. Some people deem their condition to be self-inflicted. In the Diploma course I learnt which funders would be more likely to support our cause and how to focus on the donor and beneficiary instead of the organisation.
For me, being able to tell a story that has so much relation to my own life story is powerful. The course taught me how to channel my passion more effectively in order to achieve the funding we need to change lives. Combining that passion with the theoretical knowledge needed to fundraise effectively has significantly increased my performance and confidence. I am now consulted by our executive team on any promotional and fundraising content on social media and information publications.
I am most proud of successfully fundraising the set up and implementation of a recovery hub in Newport that offers people recovering from addiction an alcohol and drug free social space – addiction is a 24/7 problem needing 24/7 solutions.
I am currently designing our 50th anniversary fundraising campaign and events and am utilising the course content in the planning and design process. I feel more self-assured when proposing to our board as I have the theoretical evidence and research to back up my proposals. I am confident that our 50th anniversary campaign will be successful, professional and meticulously planned.
My ambitions for the future are to continue to help to reduce the stigma around drug use and help people on the margins of society, and I now feel stronger in my ability to achieve this.
Rondine Molinaro MInstF(Dip), is the Residential Services Executive Lead at Kaleidoscope. She is an IoF Diploma in Fundraising graduate.