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February Service Spotlight – Business Development

For this month’s Service Spotlight we spoke with Hannah Roper, Director of Business Development at Bath Mind, to find out a bit more about the team and how their work benefits the charity. 

Can you tell us what Business Development is, and what your team does at Bath Mind?

The Business Development team at Bath Mind consists of myself, Director of Business Development, Christine Swift who is our New Business Manager, Jodie Hoskin, our Fundraising and Communications Manager, and Emily Vass who is our Fundraising and Communications Officer.

The team has three main functions which underpins Bath Mind’s operational services. Firstly, income generation to ensure we can keep our services going and support as many people in B&NES as possible. This can be divided further into restricted fundraising. For instance, grant givers and unrestricted fundraising (such as community fundraising), corporate partnerships, events, philanthropy, fundraising campaigns, our Wellbeing in the Workplace scheme…I could go on! Secondly, communications and thirdly (which is linked to communication), awareness and profile raising. Communications consist of digital (for instance our website), all our social media channels and our email marketing. We also create lots of print materials. This includes our Service Brochure, Impact Report, and our free Wellbeing Magazine. We also work with the press and local publications to promote our services and events, and provide wellbeing tips and support to the local community.

We also run an array of awareness raising campaigns throughout the year and offer a variety of tips, information, and resources to help people support their mental health and wellbeing. The Business Development team also oversee Bath Mind’s Ambassador programme which supports our awareness raising work.

Why is Business Development important?

As a charity, Bath Mind have grown rapidly since the beginning of the pandemic. We’re one of the main third sector mental health providers and our profile and image is increasingly important to ensure people respect and trust what we do and how we deliver.

Our brand and outward image are vital to ensuring we are a sustainable charity and are seen as a vital asset to the local community. Our communications are so important in increasing awareness, tackling stigma, and providing support to the community we serve.

Can you tell us about your journey at Bath Mind?

I joined Bath Mind as a volunteer in 2016 due to my personal experience of mental ill health and my passion to changing attitudes surrounding mental health. I was then lucky enough gain a part-time role to start up fundraising, launch our Wellbeing in the Workplace scheme, and oversee comms. Over the years I have progressed in my role as Bath Mind has grown as an organisation, and have been fortunate to develop this into the Business Development team.

What sort of challenges does Business Development face?

The pandemic was certainly a challenge for the Business Development team. However, it has still proven challenging (if not more so) in this post-pandemic landscape with regards to income generation. From fundraising fatigue, the economic climate, and the cost-of-living crisis, these all have had huge impact on our income generation and will continue to do so. We are now in a position of scoping new and innovative ways to ensure the sustainability of the charity.

Team capacity can also be a challenge with all of us juggling many hats and trying to meet the growing demand of communications, higher profile, and awareness as the charity itself grows.

What’s your favourite thing about working within Bath Mind’s Business Development department?

The amazing team members! Despite challenges, the team are always full of positivity, enthusiasm, and support for each other!

Thank you Hannah for telling us about Business Development at Bath Mind, and to the team for their hard work!

Posted on: 30th January 2023

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