Administer The Brain Tumour Charity’s Outlook inbox for those wanting to share their story and set up interviews for the Case Study Lead.
Conduct research and contact potential story leads found on social media platforms.
Support the Case Study Lead with copywriting and uploading stories to the internal database and external website.
Below you will find links to the stories submitted through the ‘share your story’ submission form found on The Brain Tumour Charity’s website. After receiving story submissions, I contact the person to arrange for them to speak with Jude, the Case Study Lead. Jude conducts the interviews and publish’s the stories onto The Brain Tumour Charity’s website.
To read more about the brain tumour stories shared with Jude and I here at The Brain Tumour Charity, please click on the button(s) below
Gallery featured below: On 4 April 2022 I volunteered as a Photographer withThe Brain Tumour Charityto take photos of The Brain Tumour Charity participants at The London Landmarks Half Marathon. I was beyond excited for this opportunity, because not only do I have a close connection to this cause, but I as well highly enjoy taking photos.
The London Landmarks Half Marathon consisted of participants raising money for their preferred charity organisation – over 300 charities participated. The Brain Tumour Charity had 40 participants and they managed to raise £103,000 for the event and for The Brain Tumour Charity.
I do hope that you enjoy the images below in which I was able to capture at the London Landmarks Half Marathon with the lens of my camera. If you would like to view a particular image, please click on the image and the image will expand – and please let me know what you think in the comments section.
I was contacted by a Brain Tumour Charity representative about a volunteer opportunity – to collect donations with The Brain Tumour Charity for theDavid Capel memorial cricket match. David Capel was a Cricketeer legend who passed away from a brain tumour in September 2020.
The Brain Tumour Charity says, “we are dedicated to accelerating the progress of how brain tumours are diagnosed, cared for, treated, and ultimately cured. And we won’t stop until they are.”
As far as my experience of bucket collection, I have never done this before; however, I will say that I highly enjoyed it.
Fortunately, many people did show up for the David Capel memorial cricket match to show their support for this wonderful cause and to honour the memory of David Capel.
While it may have rained on us at times during this event, we certainly did not let the rain stop us from collecting donations for The Brain Tumour Charity.
The Brain Tumour Charity volunteers and I walked around during the cricket game – Northamptonshire Cricket Club against the Somerset County Cricket Club – to collect donations in our buckets for The Brain Tumour Charity. Not only did I enjoy collecting donations for The Brain Tumour Charity, but I also enjoyed meeting many of David Capel’s family and friends as well as hearing from others who care about this cause and what it means to them.
Being an American also proved to be beneficial as many of the people we spoke to got excited that I was there and quickly wanted to donate what they could to the cause. At one point one of the leaders of our volunteer group had me walking throughout the stands to reach more potential donors, so that we could get more donations. It ended up being an affective approach, because we got many donations.
As far as the other volunteers that I worked with, they were extremely kind and supportive. It was just lovely being able to connect with them and hear their stories about why they decided to get involved with The Brain Tumour Charity and what other work they have done to raise funds and awareness for The Brain Tumour Charity.
Delighted to have been a part of such a great event to support a cause in which I have a personal connection to – 20 yr 🧠 tumour survivor! 💪🏻🧠💪🏻
I look forward to participating in many more events like this, so that WE CAN find a cure for ALL brain tumours!!! 👊🏻🧠👊🏻 pic.twitter.com/5QStbdrgc5
After participating in the David Capel memorial cricket match, I walked away having made many new professional contacts as well as I made many new friendships.
Moving forward, I hope to participate in many more events like these with The Brain Tumour Charity, so that we can make a difference by raising awareness and hopefully find a cure for brain tumour(s). Additionally, I hope to get even more involved with The Brain Tumour Charity, so that I can reach some of my personal goals that I have for myself – to help those who are battling a brain tumour(s) and its challenges that it comes with it.
These are things I thought daily when I was doing the 10,000 step a day challenge in February 2021.
I was beyond excited to participate in a charity step challenge and while I may have never done one before and wasn’t in the best of shape, I still wanted to do it – to raise funds for the Brain Tumour Research charity, so that we can be one step closer to finding a cure for brain tumours. This charity, for obvious reasons, is a cause that is close to my heart.
The unprecedented challenges before charity fundraiser
On a side note, a week before starting the 10,000 step a day in February challenge, I had actually taken a pretty bad fall when I was getting out of the shower.
As I was getting out of the shower the floor had been wet because I had cleaned the floor right before hopping in the shower, and when I went to get out of the shower, the rug slipped from under my feet and I went head first into the toilet. Thank God I was okay and that fall didn’t do anything to my shunt.
While it was a pretty painful fall and I was shook up for the first day or so, although I was still determined to stick to the plan – to achieve my goal of 10,000 step a day in February whilst attempting to raise £300 for the Brain Tumour Research charity.
Ready for the challenge!
I’m not going to lie, the first week was rough.
As I was still recovering from that crazy fall while also not getting much daily exercise because I had been self isolating quite often amid the pandemic. Therefore, I decided to start by getting my daily steps in by hopping on my treadmill throughout the day.
Turns out, it’s actually harder than you might think to ensure to get 10,000 steps a day. Personally, I was found it nearly impossible to achieve my 10,000 steps a day challenge the first week while only utilising my treadmill. Therefore, I decided I had to switch it up – so I added daily walks with my husband to parks near by so that I could reach my 10,000 step a day challenge. I noticed, as soon as we started doing this, I was easily hitting my 10,000 step a day goal!
Managed to meet my 10,000 step goal yesterday for the @braintumourrsch challenge – daily walk with the hubs, plus a 30 minute run on the treadmill!!!😁🙌🏻🙌🏻🙌🏻😁
Let's find a cure for brain tumours y'all!!! 💪🏻🧠👊🏻
Although, anytime I noticed on my Fitbit I was not getting close to achieving my 10,000 step a day goal, I would hop on my treadmill just to get more steps in so that I could end my day more successfully.
Participating in the 10,000 Steps A Day Challenge for the month of February for @braintumourrsch !
My purpose: to raise awareness and funds.
Brain tumours are indiscriminate; they can affect anyone at any age.
I will say, it got challenging once again to achieve my 10,000 step a day challenge, because when I was offered my first jab for the Covid-19 vaccine I immediately jumped on that opportunity. However, I did have some side effects.
Fortunately, my side effects were very mild, but I was very fatigued for the first week after getting my Pfizer jab. This of course made it all the more difficult to achieve my 10,000 step a day challenge in the middle of my challenge.
Completed the challenge
All in all though, it was a terrific experience! I felt so proud that I was able to participate and raise money for a charity that is trying their best to help those who have affected by brain tumour(s).
Looking ahead, I have already decided that I do plan on participating in the next 10,000 step a day challenge for the month of February 2022. Additionally, I also hope to double my original goal and hopefully will succeed by doubling my goal to £600 for the 10,000 step a day challenge for The Brain Tumour Research charity. Hopefully the more effort that goes into research for a cure for brain tumours the closer we can be to finding a cure for brain tumours.
Proud to say – I completed the February 10,000 Steps a Day challenge for @braintumourrsch ! 💪🏻
It's been a liberating experience and I plan to write up a blog post post to tell you all about it, so stayed tuned!
That’s the future we’re fighting for. The reality, though, is that 13 children and teens are diagnosed each day with a brain tumor, more children die of brain tumors than any other cancer, and survivors often face lifelong side effects and years of tests and treatments.
As the world’s leading nonprofit dedicated to children and teens with brain tumors, the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation’s mission is to care for families along their journey, cure all childhood brain tumors, and help survivors and families thrive.”
– Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation
Why I care about this organisation: As I was growing up, my family and I firmly believed to support the causes that have helped us get through the distressing times we have had to endure with the many brain surgeries I have had to have; therefore, I have participated in many Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation Fundraiser’s. Ride for Kids is the main event we often attended. The Ride for Kids is an event where sponsors raise money thoughout the year in creative ways, then we gather in locations all throughout America to report back how much has been raised and Honda motorcycles donates a motorcycle to the group who has raised the most money.
“Wishes are more than just a nice thing. And they are far more than gifts, or singular events in time. Wishes impact everyone involved—wish kids, volunteers, donors, sponsors, medical professionals and communities.
For wish kids, just the act of making their wish come true can give them the courage to comply with their medical treatments. Parents might finally feel like they can be optimistic. And still others might realize all they have to offer the world through volunteer work or philanthropy. “
– Make-A-Wish Foundation in America
Why I care about this organisation: When I was 16 years old, I was given the opportunity to meet Courtney Cox. I choose to meet Courtney Cox as my Make-A-Wish, because I was obsessed with the show F.R.I.E.N.D.S growing up. It was the only show I wanted to watch when I was recovering from every brain surgery. It was truly the wish of a lifetime. The Make-A-Wish flew my family and I out to L.A. where we meet Courtney Cox on her show that she was producing at the time called ‘Mix it up’. Courtney was so sweet and caring about my situation. It was an experience I’ll never forget!
“The Little Princess Trust provides free, real-hair wigs for young cancer sufferers or for children and young people experiencing the devastating effects of hair loss. We also fund pioneering, life-saving research into childhood cancers.”
– The Little Princess Trust
Why I care about this organisation: As it has been two years, since I had my last brain surgery and with considerations to the fact that my surgery hair has grown out quite a bit as you see in the picture, I decided to not only cut my hair to even it out, but to also cut the required minimum amount of 7inches/17cm in order to donate my hair to The Little Princess Trust.
To hear more about why I decided to donate my hair to The Little Princess Trust, please follow this link.
Also, if you would like to help at a child receive a free wig as they are loosing their hair or have already lost their hair due to a medical condition, please follow this link.
“Brain tumours have a devastating impact on people’s lives. They can strike anyone, at any age. And they strike fast. But what if we could move faster? What if we could be the generation that stopped them – right in their tracks?
As the world’s leading brain tumour charity, that’s exactly what we’re here to achieve. We’re dedicated to accelerating progress in how brain tumours are diagnosed, cared for, treated and ultimately cured. And we won’t stop until they are.”
– The Brain Tumour Charity
Why we care about this organisation: Upon moving to the U.K. my husband and I discovered The Brain Tumour Charity and becuase my husband knows how much a cause such as The Brain Tumour Charity means to me, because it can further researchers efforts in finding a cure for brain tumours he decided that we needed to be become monthly donors. I hope with our efforts, amongst many others, we can find a cure!
“Our mission at Make-A-Wish UK is to create life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses.
To enable us to grant as many life-changing wishes as possible and to deliver the One True Wish of each child, we carry out a programme of fundraising. This is intended to generate enough funds to meet current demand and maintain appropriate cash reserves to cover future foreseeable needs.
Critical to our mission are the efforts of our volunteer force and the essential generosity of our donors. We strive to widen and deepen our relationship with both.”
We have four strategic goals in place to help us deliver our mission:
To grant a wish for every eligible child
Every wish has more of an impact on the child and their family
More people believing every (eligible) child needs a wish
Accelerated, sustainable growth of income and resources
– Make-A-Wish United Kingdown
Why I care about this organisation: Upon moving to the UK, I decided to do research to see if they had an organisation like the Make-A-Wish they have in the United States. After doing some research, I found out that they do. In the future, I hope to work with and help in the making of a child – who lives with a life-threatening condition – wish come true, just like I had my wish come true 16 years ago.
Courtney Regina Lalotra – Founder & president of One Life to Love – opened the doors of One Life to Love 10 years ago. The One Life to Love is an Indian orphanage home who now houses 10 boys who have ‘special needs’.
But not only that, One Life to Love also has over 30 children who come every day for day care services, women alliance programs (where they provide sanitary pads for women who don’t have access to them), and they are also sponsoring education for more than 300 girls to go to school.
To find out more about American humanitarian Courtney Regina Lalotra story and what more One Life to Love is doing for their community, please read the article that I wrote about One Life to Love here.
Why I care about this organisation:
Courtney Regina Lalotra is a childhood family friend of mine that I have known since I was a kid. Courtney’s mom and my mom were best friends, so they of course had their kids go on many playdates. We loved to have fun as you can see in the picture below. But more than this, Courtney’s heart never changed as she grew up. She has a burning desire to help others as do I; therefore, this is why I choose to support/help a cause such as this.
PresenterBen Ellis of Switch Radio (a UK based radio station) got in touch with me. Ben hosts a show called The Week every Sunday. And because I am an American who lives in the UK, he wanted to hear what my thoughts were on the events that happened on January 6, 2021 in America – The insurrection of the US Capitol.
One thought: “It doesn’t need to be ‘Make America Great Again’, we just need to – ‘Let America be America‘.”
To hear more, please press ▶️ on the Pandemic-mon-ic! episode below.👇🏻
“Journalists need to stop parachuting in and out of communities.
Show up consistently, it’s the only way you can create trust.”
– Kathryn Geels, Director of the Engaged Journalism Accelerator
The future of journalism is … ever changing & we must continue to reshape the narrative.
After graduating from the University of Tennessee with a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism & Electronic Media, traveling for 6 years during my gap years, and then moving to England to be with my husband – I realised that I needed to reconnect and gain more knowledge in the field of Journalism by getting a Master’s degree in Multiplatform & Mobile Journalism.
I have learned – in the field of journalism – it is constantly changing and evolving; therefore, I have to continue to adapt with the newest and latest trends and technologies.
So Fahima and I hopped on a train from Birmingham, England toCardiff, Wales on 15 October 2018 to attend the News Impact Summit.
Our arrival at the News Impact Summit
Upon our arrival at the News Impact Summit, Fahima and I were greeted by other journalists and registered for the News Impact Summit. We were both so ready to connect with other business leaders and gain more knowledge about the field of journalism that we are both so passionate about.
With consideration to the fact that Fahima and I had been greatly enjoying our Master’s program, we could not wait to hear from these other highly inspiring speakers and the information they were going to share with us. We both knew this was going to be an opportunity which could greatly impact our journalism careers.
1st session: ‘Why do we need New Models for News?’
The Bureau of Investigative Journalism is a newly founded independent, non-profit organisation, which was established in 2010.
The Bureau of Investigative Journalism mission is:
“We aim is to inform the public about the realities of power in today’s world. We are particularly concerned with the undermining of democratic processes and failures to accord with fair, legal, and transparent practices.
We inform the public through in-depth investigative journalism, with no corporate or political agenda. Through fact-based, unbiased reporting, we expose systemic wrongs, counter misinformation, and spark change.”
– The Bureau of Investigative Journalism
Lucero explained, there are some fundamental problems within the field of journalism – such as digitisation (the amount of data which is expanding drastically, with little to no time or tools to handle the data), and the ability to access information and our communities (which is constantly changing through fragmentation and alternative news).
So, what are the solutions?
How can we change the issues that journalists are currently facing, which are hindering the field of journalism?
Well, there are a number of ways in which Lucero explained.
Firstly, Lucero recommends, “increase the number of public interest stories – at a local level.” With consideration to the fact that accountability plays a huge role in this, all players in the field of journalism have to participate – and this does not just include the reporters, but it also includes producers, writers, and other journalists as well.
“This is our industry to protect, ours is to find solutions.”
– Megan Lucero, Director of The Bureau of Investigative Journalism
And secondly Lucero said, you must factor in new ways to reach more of an audience and find out where they are also getting their information. Moreover, although it is important to find new ways to connect with your readers as a journalist – but you also have to be consistent.
“Journalists need to stop parachuting in and out of communities.
Show up consistently, it’s the only way you can create trust.”
– Megan Lucero, Director of The Bureau of Investigative Journalism
2nd session: ‘The Digital Transition of Local News?’
In the second session – The Digital Transition of Local News – we heard from four panelists who were from different countries – the U.K. Finland, France, and Germany.
During the discussion they examined how UK organisations are adapting to their production, editorial, and commercial practices in the digital environment.
Each panelist discussed the 5 biggest challenges that journalists face in journalism.
1. The quality of journalism.
2. Doing journalism the “hard way”.
3. Keeping up with the pace of change.
4. Try to think of 10 – 20 different aspects of a story.
5. And find an exclusive and interesting story to tell.
But more than this, there is also a deep need for constant training within the journalism community – particularly in social media.
As social media is constantly changing more and more everyday, there is a deep need to understand how to reach and engage with the audience on the digital platform. Furthermore, as journalists we must stay aware of new possible ways to engage with the audience and share the news!
Video Featured below: The Digital Transition of Local News discuss how UK organisations are adapting to their production, editorial, and commercial practices in the digital environment.
3rd session: ‘Lightning talks — Innovation in Local News from across Europe’
In the Lightning talks – Innovation in Local News from across Europe, two speakers spoke during this session – Marianna Bruschi (Head of Visual Lab, GEDI) and Camille Pollie (Community Manger of OpenVRT). Bruschi and Pollie spoke about different approaches they used within their journalism community with regards to how they connect and reach their readers by utilising different techniques.
In terms of the Newspaper publications, they began a membership program in order to reach and engage their target audience. They originally had 200,000 registered users when the started the the newspaper publication.
Currently, GEDI is working towards moving people from a free membership to a paid subscription with each GEDI newspaper publication. They have a central team in which supports the project, and the smaller local teams. Those who subscribe with a newspaper are offered exclusive content.
GEDI implements events as a form of a strategy to encourage more people to participate in their memberships – these events are typically sold out. They get their readers involved by sending in ‘speed tests on their broadband’ as part of their investigative project on the ‘broadband gap’.
They stay connected with their readers using Social Media Platforms – such as Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Flickr. GEDI strives to continue to listen to their readers on these social media platforms, so that they can continue to reshape their journalism tactics in order to have a strong journalism platform for their readers.
A few years ago Camille Pollie– from Brussel – had a passion for organising events for those who were also interested in Open VRT. Now she had never had professional training to do such a thing; however, it was something she wanted to try to get into. Therefore, she applied to be a Community Manager for Open VRT, got the job, and has been successful since.
Open VRT is designed specifically for young adults (18-34) who are interested in digital and creative talent from Flanders supported by VRT. They organise events with inspiring speakers for workshops called Studio Dondert, which allows you to co-create with the brands of the VRT.
Furthermore, Open VRT has also created a Facebook Community in order to help others get in touch with their creativity side. By having a community participate in this co-creation, it not only opens up new doors of opportunity of creativity for the community, but it also creates a whole new dimension in the field of journalism for it to be successful.
'be honest because we can smell it from a mile away if you're just in it for the numbers' says @camillepollie on connecting with digital natives #niscdf
“This session will equip you with practical research tips with examples from across Europe. We’ll highlight the basic tools to help you verify social media content across Google. We’ll point to data journalism tools that can help you research and visualise your ideas, including a deep dive on how Google Trends can compliment your storytelling.” – News Impact Summit
In the ‘Digital Newsgathering Tools‘ session, speaker Matt Cooke with Google News Initiative, shared with us some Google related techniques that are quite handy; such as dropping an image into the Google images search box to view image copyrights or you can also do the same with video as well.
Cooke also educated the group session on a audio speaking feature in Google Doc. In Google Doc, you can use the audio record tool to type the document for you without actually having to physically type it yourself. All you have to do is click on tools located under the menu bar in Google Doc, click on tools, then click on microphone, and begin speaking.
Another useful tool, that can also be handy when coming up with story ideas, is utilising Google Trends. Google Trends is a website created by Google in which it analyses the popularity of top search queries in Google Search across various regions and languages. The website uses graphs to compare the search volume of different queries over time. For example, in the year of 2020 in the Google category under the ‘beauty how to’s‘, the number one most searched on Google of the beauty how to’swas ‘how to cut men’s hair at home’.
Featured below: Graph of ‘How to cut mens hair at home’ Google search for the year of 2020.
All of the Google tips and techniques that I learned at this discussion was quite useful for my daily journalism work. I was also very intrigued by the Google News Lab and the work that they do. I hope to collaborate with them in the near future for possible journalism opportunities or even to just participate in educational seminars that they do as well.
🥪 Break for Lunch 🥒
During our break for lunch, it was not only an opportunity to eat, but also to connect with other business leaders. I spoke with many of the speakers whom I had just listened to – and I passed out many of my CV’s as well.
Just next to the lunch tables was a poster board, where many of us wrote on post-it notes to fill ‘The future of journalism is… ‘ board of what we believe to bethe future of journalism is.
5th session: ‘The Keynote — Creating a Brave Space for Civic Engagement’
Keynote speaker – Andrea Faye Hart— talked about the importance of Creating a Brave Space for Civic Engagement. Hart is the Co-founder and Director of Community Engagement at a Chicago-based journalism lab called City Bureau.
City Bureau brings journalists and community members together in a collaborative spirit to produce suitable coverage, encourage civic participation, and hold powerful forces to account.
They City of Bureau, as well, goes beyond humanising the narrative to disrupt information systems. For example, often journalism companies have talked about humanising the narrative, but what if you actually involve the humans who are part of that narrative?
These are the two important questions to ask when considering humanising the narrative:
1. What practices should my newsroom or organisation give up, because they perpetuate problematic power structures?
2. What power am I holding that I can share with the communities I serve and also what can I learn from them?
These questions are important to ask, because we don’t just need to humanise the stories, but the institution of journalism as a whole.
“We believe the crisis in journalism is an unprecedented opportunity to make more democratic media.”
-Andrea Faye Hart, Community Engagement Director & Co-founder of City Bureau
6th session: Lightning talk — ‘Learning to Listen: Turning Everyday Life into Compelling Stories’
‘News that’s limited to the most extraordinary events and the most powerful people can feel a million miles away from the everyday life of our communities. And yet every day, there are tales of remarkable people, powerful bonds, fascinating heritage, rapid transformations, common problems, and unique situations. But how good are journalists at listening to these stories? In what way do they challenge the way we think about news, and how it’s reported? And what can they tell us about the things that really shape our society?’ – News Impact Summit
For our final session, we attended Learning to Listen: Turning Everyday Life into compelling stories. Our speakers Paul Rowland (Media Wales) and Alison Gow (Reach plc) taught us about the importance of “learning to listen” and “how you can turn everyday life into compelling stories.”
Furthermore, our group came up with story ideas by writing everyday thoughts and questions onto post-it notes in order to turn them into possible stories.
Fahima and I had the pleasure to brainstorm our ideas with our BCU ProfessorBob Calver who also attended the summit.
The Post-it note brainstorming activity was really quite interesting in that we came up with some really interesting story ideas in a new and creative way that we had never thought to do.
For the Post-it note exercise, we were told to write things/topics that mattered to us on the post-it note – either something personally or professionally – which we would like to write about. This technique of brainstorming ideas is something I most certainly enjoyed and I plan to use it in the near future.
Fahima and I, as well as the rest of the groups in the room, really enjoyed this activity. We shared with our other colleagues back at BCU, who were not able to attend the summit, about this exercise and just how effective it was when coming up with inclusive and interesting stories.
My takeaway from the News Impact Summit in Cardiff Wales
As the summit came to an end, I felt so empowered and motivated about using the new tools and techniques that I learned at the News Impact Summit.
With each journalism summit that I participate in, I am constantly learning more knowledge about the field of journalism and how I can adapt new techniques into my own daily journalism practices.
But more than this, I have also learned how to reach my audience on a deeper level, which is why attending summits like this is so important to me – so that I build more trust with my readers.
My career in journalism means so much to me and I truly hope to not only make a impact on other’s lives by implementing these new journalism practices, but that I can also create new and innovative stories in order to make an impact on the society and the world as a whole.