Farewell Blog from Amber Shotton, FSI CEO

What a 15 months!

We’ve done our best to weather the Covid storm, pivoting our face to face learning events to 100% digital and virtual, enabling us to continue supporting our small charity members despite the pandemic and lockdown.

We’ve worked closely as a team to look at Equality, Diversify and Inclusion and make sure that this passion and ethos was centred in all things that we do, adapting our approach to delivery, membership and doing our best to influence those we engage with.

We’ve navigated the waters of a major government grant process, implementing the UKAid funded Small Charity Challenge Fund Capacity support programme for small International Development charities, successfully kicking off with a big event in March, and delivering a variety of learning events from Full and half day training, Advice, Peer Support Matched, Thematic and Networking events and webinars. And soon to come are new mini E-learning modules too!

We’ve partnered and collaborated with more organisations than ever before for Small Charity Week 2021. From working with the Eden project team and 8 other major campaigns to create the #MonthOfCommunity through to engaging with more partners for the week itself. We reached just shy of half a million people on social media and gave away prizes and donations galore!

But its farewell from me.

After 6 years at the FSI, moving from the corporate sector to join this wonderfully vibrant small charity sector I have taken the decision to leave. I loved every role but I think my greatest achievement has been in my most recent role as CEO. Its not easy taking over from founders, especially at the start of a global pandemic but through the support of my team (Staff and Associates), board, volunteers and members – we have collectively achieved so much through real partnership and collaboration.

I leave happy and confident that the organisation is in a good place - ready to move forward to its next chapter. I wish our new Interim CEO, Tom Gill, the very best. They have an amazing team, who have the skills and experience to implement a new strategy for a future FSI.

As for me, I’ll be taking a well earned 6 month sabbatical to project manage a big family move, and then who knows….you never know when you might come across me again in the future.

So, to sign off….small Charities – you; rock, are amazing, work tirelessly, put everyone first, are unsung heroes, create magic of the smallest resources, and courageous. The nation is lucky to have you!

And these three things still remain relevant #SmallButMighty #NeverMoreNeeded #SmallButVital

Please keep on keeping on!