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Corporate Fundraiser, Holly Addison, reflects on her first year at Katharine House Hospice and the path that led her here... 

"This time last year, I was about the enter the role of Corporate Fundraiser for Katharine House Hospice. I wasn't sure what to expect but I definitely wasn't disappointed. Katharine House has been imprinted on my heart due to the invaluable care and support the staff have given to me and my family in recent years. 

I was making a huge career transition from the music industry to the charity sector, but it was an easy decision to make. Following my personal experience with the hospice and witnessing first-hand the incredible work that the hospice does, it felt only natural to try and give back. When my dad was ill, he made a request that I would continue to fundraise and raise enough money to buy an extra-long bed (he was 6ft 7!) and from that point, I got the fundraising bug. I felt fulfilled each time I added a little extra money to the pot and it soon became clear that I wanted that fulfilment in my career too. I thought to myself, if there is a chance to raise money to help other families to receive the level of care that we did and have special memories during the most difficult time, I wanted to be a part of that... and what better place to do it than the place that gave all of that to me and my family?!

It has been surprising how many local businesses I meet where there is a direct personal connection with the hospice, whether that is due to a colleague receiveing support or a staff member having a loved one cared for by the hospice. I know I shouldn't have been surprised as Katharine House Hospice has touched the lives of so many people in the local area, but it is an aspect of the job I didn't quite expect to experience at this level. It is brilliant to hear about all of the positive experiences people have had with the hospice that has led them to want to give back too. 

The extremely generous support that the hospice receives from local businesses is incredible and comes in all shapes and sizes, from financial donations and donated gifts to volunteering hours and skill sharing from businesses who have supported us for over 20 years, as well as those who are new to us. 

The role can be very unpredictable and I never 100% know what is around the corner, but that's what keeps me on my toes! Just when you think you have seen it all, a company will come up with another unique way to support the hospice and it is wonderful to be part of that journey with them. The best part of my job is building long lasting relationships with the businesses that I work with. I have met so many wonderful people this year whose enthusiasm and desire to help still never ceases to amaze me, and this is what make my job worth it!

Katharine House Hospice has been imprinted onto my heart in my personal life and that will never fade, but it has also become my career and I couldn't be more thankful for the fact that I get to wake up every moring and love coming to work."