Fundraising news, ideas and inspiration for professional charity fundraisers

The personal path to a career in fundraising

The personal path to a career in fundraising

The hospice care received by her grandmother inspired one community fundraiser to take up her chosen career.

Jacki Pigford, community fundraiser at Willow Burn Hospice in Lancaster, became involved in fundraising after her grandmother spent a week at the hospice.  The time Christine Pigford spent at the Willow Burn Hospice at the end of her life inspired first the whole family to get involved, raising £3,500 through a charity night for the hospice.

Jacki, who was 14 at the time of her grandmother’s death, later studied Occupational Therapy at Teesside University. For work experience during her final year she asked Willow Burn whether she could become a volunteer in its day hospice, and was there every week for eight months.

Towards the end of her work experience Jacki and her family organised a second charity night, which raised £2,500 for the hospice.

Katherine Luke, Willow Burn’s income generation and marketing manager, said:

“I was so impressed when I saw Jacki with patients around the hospice as well as the way she approached her fundraising. Luckily I was looking for a community fundraiser – and the rest is history.”

Jacki has now been in the job for almost a year and is currently involved in planning Willow Burn’s first charity ball, in partnership with The Sir Bobby Robson Foundation, which takes place on 16 September.

She said:

“It doesn’t seem like a job to me because I am so passionate about it. I can’t think of anything else I would want to do instead.”


Melanie May is a journalist and copywriter specialising in writing both for and about the charity and marketing services sectors since 2001. She can be reached via

Get free email updates

Keep up to date with fundraising news, ideas and inspiration with a weekly or daily email. [Privacy]

* We do not share your email or personal details.
" />