Pilotlight Blog

Creating lasting impact for charities in Scotland

I have always been an advocate for skills-based volunteering. When diverse groups of people come together to contribute just a little bit of their time, skills and energy, it inevitably transforms the activity into something bigger. For me, the most exciting part about this collaborative approach to change is the lasting impact it can have and the ripple effect it creates.  I’ve recently started working with the charity Safe Harbour Inverclyde as part of a new Strategic Alliance programme we’re running in partnership with NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde.  This project has reminded me just how much change and impact we have at Pilotlight through our collaborative approach. 

Safe Harbour works with vulnerable individuals in Inverclyde experiencing long-term mental and emotional issues, making them more emotionally resilient by focusing on the individual instead of the condition. Its programmes have been a resounding success in engaging those who find it too difficult to engage with statutory services. The continue…

Delivering Sustainability to Small Charities: the Weston Charity Awards

Last week the class of 2017 Weston Charity Award winners marked the end of their engagements with us and celebrated how far they have come at Fortnum & Mason’s. The event was not only a great celebration of all the work done in the last year, but it also showcased the significant impact that the Weston Charity Awards and the Pilotlight Programme has brought to the charities we’ve worked with. Since the awards began in 2014 we’ve worked with a diverse range of charities and the 2016 winners are no different. They all have increasing need for their work, they all have a decreasing pool of funding to support their activities, and they all came to the awards wanting to make their organisation more efficient and effective so they can ultimately help more people.

It’s inspiring to hear that since winning the awards in 2014 Horden Youth and Community Centre has doubled in size and significantly increased its income. I’d urge you to watch the short ‘Creating lasting impact’ film that premiered at the event showcasing the transformation this charity has been through, which all started from the continue…

Giving back: Making the most of your skills

This is my last blog post as a Pilotlight Project Manager. Next week, I move from London to Dublin. It’s an exciting new chapter for me – but I’ve been reflecting on my time at Pilotlight, about the work I’ve done and the work that will be carrying on once I’ve gone. What has stood out during my time here? What are the moments that will stay with me?

How can my skills be useful?

Over my three years at Pilotlight, there is perhaps one phrase I’ve heard more than any other from our volunteers: “I’m not sure there is anything I can bring to this charity.”

It continues to amaze me. All of our Pilotlighters have stellar careers, generally having reached the top echelons of their continue…

How to pitch effectively for corporate partnerships: Tips from the Weston Charity Award winners

Our most recent cohort of Weston Charity Award winners are reaching the end of their awards journey. Over the past year each organisation has received support from us to tackle their most pressing issues, from governance to growth plans. However as Dickie James, CEO of Staffordshire Women’s Aid, just one of the 16 winners, said, the Weston Charity Awards “isn't just about developing a business plan, it’s about feeling more secure about the sustainability of your organisation”.

In more and more of our work with charities we’re seeing an increased demand for guidance on how to receive support from corporate companies, so we invited the award winners to attend a two-part series of workshops focusing on this. The events culminated in each charity pitching their proposals for corporate partnership to Dragon’s Den continue…