We caught up with Demelza's new Storytelling Officer, Oliver, to see how he's settling into life at Demelza, and how his role will look day to day...

"Hi, I’m Oliver and I just started with Demelza as a Storytelling Officer within the Marketing and Comms team!

A little bit about my background: I studied Creative Writing at Canterbury Christ Church University from 2016-2019, and after I graduated I took on a Digital Marketing Coordinator role for a tech start-up; they provided software to Heating and Plumbing engineers which allowed them to manage jobs, issue digital certificates, and more. It was a really varied role – some days I’d be managing paid advertising, others I’d be writing newsletters, and I did occasionally tip my hat to some Photoshop and video editing as well.

The Storytelling Officer role with Demelza is obviously very different, but it was an opportunity I had to jump on. Not only does it let me focus more on writing, which I’ve been passionate about since I was a child, but it also means doing work that legitimately helps people. I’ve always wanted to be involved in non-profit work, and I feel very lucky to have gotten started so early in my career.

My day-to-day at Demelza so far has been a bit of a blur!

I’ve dropped in on more Zoom meetings than I can count, introducing myself to different teams and warning them that I’m about to be under their feet a lot more, and I’ve already had access to a lot of really amazing training on topics like safeguarding and bereavement. Everyone’s been incredibly welcoming, both within my own team and the wider organisation, and I definitely get the sense that I’m amongst some very talented people.

Now that I’m a bit more settled (one month down!) I am starting to get stuck into some “proper” work. The Storytelling Officer role is all about finding people – whether Demelza families, our staff, or our volunteers – who have interesting or inspiring stories to tell, and sharing them with our supporters and beyond. I’ve started reaching out to people for interviews, and my calendar is filling up; it’s daunting, but very exciting! It’s already clear to me that everyone here has something valuable to share, and I’m looking forward to unearthing more of these stories in future.

Photos of Oliver, Demelza's Storytelling Officer

Overall I’m just eager to get stuck in. I’d love to get more series of content going where I link up multiple interviews or family stories to feed into a central theme, and I have an idea for a piece that looks at the activities we offer Demelza families which they might not get access to otherwise – but these are all just ideas at the moment. I’m looking forward to seeing how my role evolves in the coming weeks and months, and hope to talk to more of you soon about making some of these ideas into reality!"

We'd love to hear from you!

If you have a story you'd like to share, whether you're a Demelza family, volunteer, or supporter of Demelza, we'd love for you to get in touch and speak to Oliver.