In this week’s blog, we say goodbye to our Head of Fundraising, Juliet Rowe, who started her role in September 2018 – what a whirlwind it’s been!

What are you most proud of achieving during your time here?

Our BBC Radio 4 Appeal was an exciting and moving experience to be a part of. One of my highlights was listening to Jess Barnes tell her story on BBC Radio 4 and seeing the huge flood of donations come through. It was amazing to hear the story of a rare disease diagnosis on a major radio station and reading donors heartfelt comments during the campaign.

What have you learnt?

It has certainly been a steep climb in AKU knowledge. I can now proudly say I have a firm understanding of AKU and its research history, which has helped a lot in my funding applications.

I started this role straight out of university and now feel confident in my fundraising abilities. I have learned so much about the charity sector and feel eager to continue my fundraising career.

Any highlights?

So many! The 2019 patient workshop was a great experience to meet patients and participate in the activities, including a Pilates workshop.

Our trip to Siena, Italy, in 2019 – I met key AKU researchers and learned more about the success of DevelopAKUre. Siena was a beautiful, scenic town; it even snowed.

Finally, the fundraising success we have had, including our recent crowdfunding campaign. It’s been great to see our patient group get involved and the projects we have achieved over the years from successful funding.

What are you going to miss the most?

Both the AKU Society and Findacure team have been my rock over the past three years. I will miss everyone greatly.

What are your future plans? 

I am taking most of 2022 off to travel. I move to Los Angeles in a few weeks, then to Chicago over the summer. While I am there, I plan to do freelance work as a writer and manage fundraising and communications for the charity Orchard OCD.

I am hoping to go to South America near the end of the year (depending on COVID-19 restrictions). Once I have got my travelling bug out of the way, I want to move to London to pursue my career in the charity sector.

Do you have a farewell message for AKU patients?

All AKU patients have met me with open arms and kindness. I really appreciate the help and support patients have given me, especially when I was learning about AKU and how the disease works. I am excited to see what the AKU Society does next with medical research and patient support.

Any last words?

The AKU Society has been a fantastic experience and one I will never forget. I wish everyone the best of luck in the future.