Fern Whiting – Administration and Communications Officer
Where did you work before Coram-i and how long have been here?
I worked briefly at Frontline Aids whilst completing my degree in English Language with Creative Writing. I was part of a small team focusing on contract support and international logistics – mainly around projects in Africa. Whilst working there I decided that upon finishing my degree I would look for work in the charity sector. I’ve been with the Coram-i team since October 2021.
What was it that made you want to join the team?
I wanted to utilise and develop my skills in the charity sector and I jumped at the chance to join Coram. I’m so pleased to have found an organisation with such an interesting history and an inspiring commitment to improving the lives of vulnerable children and young people. I knew instantly at my interview that this was a fantastic team and I was overjoyed to be accepted for the role.
Tell us about your job and what it involves?
My job role is varied but predominantly I provide administrative support to the Adoption and Special Guardianship Leadership Board and related Reference and Task Groups. I take the minutes in ASGLB related meetings and liaise with board members and attendees to ensure the meetings run smoothly. I send out the weekly ASGLB update emails, engage with other organisations via Twitter and assist with ad hoc comms tasks for the Secretariat.
What’s the best bit of your job?
I feel incredibly lucky to have an amazing team around me and to be able to connect with so many individuals from across the sector. Everyone is different but they all share the same sincerity and commitment to their respective areas. There are many challenges in this sector but it is encouraging and inspiring to see so many people working towards shared goals.
I also love that no two days are the same and I have the freedom to manage my own workload and development. Every day feels like a school day – in a good way of course!
And the most challenging?
Keeping track of all the acronyms! There seems to be a never ending stream of terminology to keep track of when writing up the minutes. I see the appeal of shortening names but I am going to have to resort to flashcards to learn them all!
What’s are you most proud of?
I am proud of the progress I have made since I started at Coram-i and I look forward to making more substantial contributions to the team as I gain more experience. Outside of work I am most proud of my degree, as a mature student I was apprehensive about how well I would do but finished with a First overall and an 80% on my final dissertation. I surprised myself over and over again and I am so proud of what I was able to achieve given the circumstances.
Finally, away from work, what’s at the top of your bucket list?
I would love to get back to Japan to see more of the country. I travelled there briefly for some training in 2012 but wasn’t able to do much sightseeing. It’s a beautiful country and I hope to be able to explore it more in future trips.