Winner of the Greg Vickery Scholarship, Beverly O'Brien travelled to the UK to research fundraising strategies
The Greg Vickery Scholarship is presented to Beverley O'Brien (left) and Rachael Gleeson (right) in Melbourne. President of Australian Red Cross Board Michael Legge (far left) and Greg Vickery himself joined the event.
Member and Volunteer Beverley O'Brien has just got back from a research trip in the UK and Netherlands where she learnt about engaging membership in fundraising as part of the Greg Vickery Scholarship.
Beverley says she was "thrilled and honoured" to be selected alongside staff member Rachael Gleeson for the $25,000 scholarship.
She was particularly excited because, while the topic of engaging members in the bequest space is a relatively new idea, she sees it as very important and valuable.
"Membership across Australia is declining, partly due to the older demographic and it's becoming more challenging to fundraise. I'm keen to keep membership viable and strong, and I'm particularly interested in how we can engage people in all types of fundraising, not just bequests.
"Membership has historically been a fundraising base " she said.
One of the main things she sees as vital for the future of Red Cross in Australia is advocacy among all Red Cross people.
"It's important that members and volunteers are advocates for Red Cross, so that the word is out there in the right way. As we grow older, we need a new following!"
"When people ask me about Red Cross, I proudly talk about programs such as the Breakfast clubs, Patient Transport, Telecross and Community Visitors, and I let them know that Red Cross relies on committed donors to keep these going."
Beverley and Raechel will present learnings from the Institute of Fundraising Conference in the Netherlands to our Board and management team soon.