My work experience with COCO. By Celeste Quigley.

My name is Celeste Quigley and I go to Dame Allan's school and I chose to do my work experience at COCO.

I’ve always thought charities were so important and have always made a conscious effort to try and donate when I can, I love researching when and why charities began but didn’t know how much work had to be put into them. COCO is an amazing charity which has impacted thousands of lives in East Africa. Even though it is an amazing charity, it has also helped me to understand what I would like and what I would dislike about different jobs in the future. I have gained lots of different knowledge from the people around me at COCO.  During my week at COCO, I have been lucky enough to do a range of different tasks.

On Monday, I worked with Jess to see if the project evaluations and project briefs were up to date and made sure the website also had these updates and correct information. I also worked on a display board for the Chamber event on Thursday- this gave me independence and responsibility as I had to organise what other businesses would see when they looked at COCO. This allowed me to come up with my own ideas about what should be on the board and to make sure it was displayed in an organised manner. I needed to make my own posters for the different businesses that sponsored the charity; to do this I used piktochart. I found this quite difficult as I needed to get I done by the deadline of Thursday, however I enjoyed how challenging it was.

Tuesday, I worked with Ashleigh to work on digital marketing. I found this very interesting, as part of the time I had with Ashleigh was to look at the social media of the charity, which showed that social media can play a very vital role in any organisation, as you can reach lots of people who can maybe fundraise or donate the charity in the future. I was looking into the various different social media the charity had and looking for what posts worked best and when was the right time to post. Also looking at other charities social medias and seeing how they were popular and if COCO could reflect any of these posts to use for their social media. Ashleigh also asked me my opinions about how to improve the social media which made me feel like my opinion was important even though I had only been there for two days. We used spread sheets to go into depth about how the posts were doing, for example seeing the number of likes and shares on posts.  This helped Ashleigh to know when and what to post in the future.

On, Wednesday, I worked with Rosie, to focus on admin. I worked with a program called DS which taught me a new skill as I had never used this before. It was very helpful that they already had the procedure for this written down in a word document so if I needed help I could look at that. This consisted of making sure people were on the database and with the right and updated information and if there were not on DS to add them on. This was very intriguing to me and I really enjoyed it. I was becoming increasingly more confident with the work I was expected to do.

Thursday, I continued finalising my display board and then we went to the chamber event. This was quite daunting to start with, due to how many different companies were there and that I would be making the display board, which would be the first thing people see to represent COCO,  however I was calmly relaxed by Jess,  as she helped me settle into the role. The event was very interesting to see the various businesses and how they work and how events like that give opportunities to find new sponsors. This taught me communication and display is key at events as you need to be approachable and have to engage in conversation to let people know what you do and why they need to be interested.

My display board for the chamber event.

Its Friday and the time has flown by, I am sad to leave as I have really enjoyed my time with the team I would love to come back in the future to work with COCO again as they were all so kind and the work they do is so amazing.

I would like to thank the members of COCO who have allowed me to have this week with them. They were all very welcoming and helped me to settle in straight away. They set me tasks which allowed me to challenge myself but made me sure that I could ask as many questions I wanted, to help me understand the tasks. I know I would not have experienced this opportunity anywhere else, which makes me extremely lucky to have been allowed to come here. I have learned so much in a short space of time and would love to work here again sometime in the future.

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