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Kent’s Centre for Philanthropy launches Fundraiser Apprenticeship

Melanie May | 27 October 2022 | News

two people sit at a laptop. you can see the arms of a man in a plaid shirt who looks like he is explaining something to the woman

The apprenticeship will provide fundraisers with the skills, behaviours and knowledge to develop, build and sustain relationships with donors.

The Centre for Philanthropy at the University of Kent is launching the Fundraiser Apprenticeship to help charities respond to the challenges being faced. The programme draws on the latest evidence-based knowledge on fundraising and philanthropy, including research produced in the Centre since it was established in 2008.

An accelerated 13-month level 3 course, it begins in March 2023 and is designed and delivered by academics who were themselves fundraisers before moving into research and teaching. It will provide apprentices with the skills, behaviours and knowledge to identify, build and maintain relationships to raise financial and non-financial support for their charitable cause, and will be particularly relevant to anyone new to fundraising while practitioners moving into a high value/philanthropy role in a fundraising team will also benefit.


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The programme will be delivered through a combination of teaching methods to provide apprentices with a varied experience which include:

Apprentices will also ‘learn by doing’ through practical experience within the apprentice’s corresponding work placement, with a minimum of 20% off-the-job training.

There will be a 2-day face-to-face induction at the start of the programme. This will be held at the University of Kent’s Canterbury campus, followed by another 2-day event later on in the programme. 

Dr Beth Breeze, Director of the Centre for Philanthropy, said:

“Charities cannot run on goodwill alone! We know that most philanthropic donations are not spontaneous, they happen because someone asked for support. I am proud that we are marking our Centre’s 15th anniversary with this new initiative to train and support fundraisers. I am confident it will help to increase charitable donations and help more donors to experience the joy of giving, both of which are key to building the culture of philanthropy in the UK. We are looking forward to sharing our knowledge and passion for fundraising and philanthropy with our apprentices. This course is designed to build their capacity and their confidence, and will help to further professionalise this wonderful and crucial profession.”

Working alongside Dr Breeze on the programme is Dr Lucy Lowthian, who joined Kent after a career spanning a variety of fundraising roles.

She said:

“This programme has been designed for passionate individuals who are looking to progress their career in fundraising. It will be delivered by academics who are experts in the charity sector, so apprentices will benefit from a great wealth of knowledge and experience.”

A virtual information event is taking place on 4 and 24 November for anyone interested in learning more.