I have been interning for the Alzheimer’s Association for a little over a month now and already can see the amount of hard word that goes into fundraising and awareness. I’ve had the privilege to talk to many coworkers that contribute to different facets of the organization like communication or development. What is interesting to see is that each of the departments are always working side by side trying to bounce ideas and opportunities off of one another. Though fundraising is obviously one of the most important aspects, if people don’t find a connection or need to donate then money will never be funneled. This leads to the communications aspect–getting local stories in newsletters or advertising on the radio. From talking with the communication director, I’ve seen the importance of getting the word out there, even learning that it takes seven times for people to see something before it will stick in their heads.
Though the Walk to End Alzheimer’s might be the largest fundraising affair, there are so many other events like The Longest Day or golf outings which need to be organized and implemented that contribute to the cause. There is not one sole social outing my coworkers are glued to which makes the job very exciting. One of the most interesting events that I’ve seen is research night where people can come and learn about the latest developments in research. There are also support groups under this umbrella of the organization which help people find common ground with others who are affected by the disease.
Recently a lot of my job has been making phone calls and updating spreadsheets with people who we are looking to sign up for the Alzheimer’s Walk. Though it is not the most glamorous of assignments, it’s very rewarding to get people to start a team so that they can help fundraise or even direct them to a helpline. My biggest struggle thus far has been feeling confident to pick up the phone and call a stranger asking them about their interest but I know communication is a valuable skill which can help me in any field I would choose. I am confident the rest of my internship will be as educational as the first month has been and I am excited for the weeks to come.