Neuromuscular Centre Midlands opened in 2012; it is the first centre in the Midlands region and only the second in the UK to offer specialised services to those with muscular dystrophy and related neuromuscular conditions. Jenna Clake worked as a Fundraising and Communications intern where she completed applications for funding and grants for this new charity.

Jenna’s internship lasted 8 weeks during the summer of 2013 and was supported by the UK Professional Bursary which she used to fund travelling to and from her placement.

As well as processing applications for funding Jenna also researched and made contact with other new trusts, helped design marketing campaigns to attract donations and acted as a representative for NMC Midlands at networking events and press days. Her other duties also included general administrative tasks in the office where she had to teach herself new skills.

Jenna enjoyed finding out how running a charity works and it was beneficial that she worked at a small charity because she got a well-rounded look at each department. She also enjoyed the social part of the job, attending networking events where she met new people and made new contacts. Overall she enjoyed the challenge of working in fundraising which she found both educational and rewarding.

During her internship, Jenna was able to develop her communication skills and interacted with a variety of people from across the social spectrum. She has made many connections which are not just confined to the charity, such as business trustees, which she believes will benefit her in the future.

"Despite finding the internship challenging at times, I do believe that I now have genuine workplace experience: workplaces, especially charities, are subject to change at very short notice, and it is important to be able to adapt to these with ease."

"Overall, I believe that my professionalism has also benefitted immensely from the position; I have been introduced to many different people, and have worked hard to create a good and lasting impression (on the behalf of the charity and myself)."

"Jenna’s work has already made a big impact in our organisation. We are a small, embryonic charity and having an additional team member in our fundraising and communications function means we can run new projects this summer that we would otherwise be unable to do, like a marketing campaign to attract monthly donors."

"Jenna made a tremendous contribution to our organization not only with critical fundraising grant applications but also in assisting with other fundraising related functions in the midst an unplanned change in staffing midway through her internship. Her capable and intelligent handling of the multitude of tasks contributed greatly to an orderly transition, and she far exceeded expectations we would have for an intern (or for a full-time employee for that matter)."