Emer's Fundraising Story
Emer O'Doherty accepts a cheque from a pizza night fundraiser she ran with Eco Pizzeria in Gorey
Emer, why did you decide to get involved with Operation Smile?
I first heard about Operation Smile a little over a year ago, from my cousin who was involved and went on a medical mission as a student volunteer. I was instantly intrigued. The more she told me about it the more I knew I wanted to help and get involved in any way that I could.
I contacted Operation Smile and found that everyone was so friendly and welcoming and I soon headed off to San Diego for the International Student Leadership Conference 2016. There I heard more about the amazing work that Operation Smile does and I started to think about what I could do help.
What’s your approach to fundraising?
I find that when fundraising, the first and most important step, in my opinion, is creating awareness. I’m always sure to put a lot of extra time and effort into informing people of what Operation Smile is all about. Once people hear about what the children are suffering from and going through, they are always so eager and generous to donate and help. I myself was completely overwhelmed after the first fundraiser I had by the support of my community.
What’s next for you with Operation Smile?
For the future, I have of course more fundraising ideas and plans in mind. I applied to be mission trained earlier this year, so that I can travel on a medical mission as a student volunteer. And so, I am going to Rome this summer to attend the 2017 International Student Leadership Conference, and Mission Training Workshop. I will hopefully be going on a medical mission with Operation Smile before Christmas. I am really looking forward to all of it.
How do you feel about going on a medical mission?
Since last year I have spoken to a few people who’ve been on a medical mission with operation Smile and have told me about how much of an amazing experience it is. The stories I've heard are amazing and the difference that this organisation makes to people's lives is incredible. I look forward to being a part of it in the future.
Emer O'Doherty (second from right), and friends, at a bake sale fundraiser earlier this year