Working with Charities

Happy Monday everyone! And welcome back to my blog, if this is your first time visiting my website than have a browse around and don’t forget to connect with me on social media or leave a comment! – I LOVE to hear your thoughts.

This week’s blog post is all about charities and why I work with them and value the importance of ‘charity work’ and the drivers behind the organisation.

I always said to myself if my following grew to over a thousand I would link up with a charity as its more exposure for them and although it might not make a huge difference – every little helps. I’m a big believer in helping others out if you’re in a position to do so. – I don’t necessary mean financially, you can help organisations out by raising awareness, fundraising, donating gifts or even just helping spread the word.

I first began working with the ‘Riding for disabled’ back in 2014, I had some spare time on my hands while I was in the process of self-publishing my first book and had heard about a local group which were looking for volunteers with the horses. I love horses so it made perfect sense to go along and see what I could do! I met the head of the group who is really lovely and some of the other volunteers showed me around the yard, I’ll never forget the first time I went along to volunteer I was quite shy (which is hard to believe now!) but I remember watching all the work the volunteers put in and it really made me think about every single one of them who had given up there time to be there. After my first day volunteering I knew I wanted to help as much as I could and settled in to volunteering every Thursday morning for a couple of hours. I think it’s amazing how the horses can make a positive difference to people. The RDA have been going for over forty years and there are over five hundred volunteer groups across the UK which help twenty-eight thousand people a year – which is incredible. Every time I use to volunteer with the RDA I would come away feeling elated, as I’ve got busier I’ve taken a step back from volunteering but still help raise awareness through social media. I also donate raffle prizes to them when they hold an event and send a donation every 6 months. In 2017 we received an award from HRH Princess Anne for the work we have done so far. You can read all about it here – http://www.richmondshiretoday.co.uk/little-alf-author-recieves-award-princess-anne-work-charity/ 

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 As my following or ‘Little Alf’s following has grown over the years I’ve begun working with another equine based charity ‘Brooke.’ They’re a welfare charity that aims to improve the lives of working horses, mules and donkeys in poverty, as well as the people who work with them. They do amazing work in places such as Africa, Latin America and the Middle East. A long time ago I retweeted one of their tweets and it got a great response so they got in touch and I began to do some work with them on social media which was really effective – it just shows you the power of social media! Although initially I wasn’t raising funds for them I was just helping raise awareness which was having a great impact on the charity. As time has gone on we’ve begun to work with Brooke more and more and later this year I’m taking part in the Great north run to raise funds for Brooke! You can visit my just giving page here to find out more – https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/hannah-russellbrooke 

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Early this year I was clearing out my office ready for 2018 and I came across 200 of my Little Alf books which had the ‘old’ cover on. The books where no use to me anymore as they weren’t the new version and I started wondering what I could do with them and begun some research online, I came across ‘Book Aid international’ and got in touch asking if they would be interested in the books they said Yes so I boxed them up and sent them down to London. It was a great feeling to know them books would be going to people who don’t have access to books! You can find out more here – https://www.littlealf.com/News/ArtMID/434/ArticleID/3217/Donating-Books-to-Book-Aid-International

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A couple of months ago I also began working with ‘Helping Rhinos’ a fantastic charity which works to save the rhino from extinction. Working with the charity is something a little different to my usual work as its not equine based or based around books. Rhinos and conservation animals are something I’ve been passionate about for a long time and last summer I was scrolling through social media when I came across an article about ‘10.5KG of Rhino Horn’ which had been seized from an Indonesian passenger. The article really upset me and I knew I had to do something to help. I designed some ‘designs’ based around saving the rhino horn and got in touch with ‘Helping Rhinos’ who loved the designs, in January we launched the pop up shop ‘Russell Rhino’ and I’m delighted that we’ve already shipped products to Australia, USA, Mexico, Belgium and around the UK. It’s very rewarding to know I’m doing something to make a difference and I’ve create something for a great cause. You can find out more about it here – https://shop.spreadshirt.co.uk/RussellRhino/ 

I try to do as much charity work as I can because I find it rewarding and also enjoyable, the drivers behind the charities are lovely and hardworking, and it’s nice to be in the same environment with people who are aiming for the same goal – to make a difference!

I once heard a quote which said – ‘We can’t help everyone but everyone can help someone.’

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To find out more about the charity work I get involved in then you can head across the ‘Little Alf’s website’ or say Hello on our social media where usually getting involved in campaigns!

Facebook – @HannahRussellAuthor

Twitter – https://twitter.com/hannahrussell26

Instagram – @HannahRussellAuthor

To read about our charity work then check out Little Alf’s memoir – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Little-Alf-story-pint-sized-forever/dp/0751568910/ref=la_B076FC9LGY_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1518438528&sr=1-1