Young mum of three Christie Heilds has her very own inspirational story of how she…
“Simplicity is what I adore about the charity. Easy to understand. Free. What more do you need?!” – Jen Bayford, Little LifeSavers Trustee
Have you ever wondered about the team making decisions for the Little LifeSavers Charity? We’re delighted to be welcoming the wonderful, big-hearted Jen Bayford to the Little LifeSavers board of trustees as our Fundraising and PR Lead. Originally starting her journey with Little LifeSavers as a volunteer herself, Jen’s enthusiasm for the charity’s cause was a catalyst for her stepping into the role of trustee.
She will take care of all of our fundraising opportunities for participants as well as be the lead point of contact for our corporate partners and sponsors.
We’re privileged to have Jen on board and we thought we’d catch up with her so you can meet the newest addition to the team.
Thanks for chatting with us Jen. Tell us a little bit about you.
I have been in the world of marketing for my whole career – to me, it is the perfect blend of creativity and connection with people. Up until COVID hit, I worked in house for companies like The Body Shop and Kenneth Green Associates. I then joined Goodwood, which is where I met my current business partner and friend, Chris. When the pandemic hit, Chris and I decided to take voluntary redundancy, taking the leap of faith to set up our very own ethical marketing agency, Growth Animals.
Growth Animals was founded on the premise that you could do good alongside making profit. Within business, you have a platform and a voice to be able to not just pay the mortgage or bills, but do some real good for the world too.
So how did your path collide with Little LifeSavers?
“A huge part of who I am is connection. I love talking to people and finding out all about them. On behalf of my own agency, Growth Animals, I am part of a business networking group called BNI. One of the members of this group was the founder of Little LifeSavers, Barbara Stanley. When I first heard Barbara talking about the charity, I knew that its message, simplicity, and core aim was something I truly aligned with. “
What drew you to the charity’s work?
“The effective model of the charity is almost perfect in its simplicity. The idea behind the cause – training little people to do CPR and knowing what to do in an emergency is simply amazing.
I’m a mum myself. I have a little 9 year old boy called Frankie. As a parent, we want our children to be equipped with life skills. And what better than to be taught early how to save lives – you never know when your child might need to know that.”
What made you decide to volunteer?
“Meeting the founder of Little LifeSavers, Barbara Stanley, was a key factor in my original decision to volunteer for the charity. Her infectious enthusiasm couldn’t be ignored. The way she articulated her charity’s vision, ambitions and ultimate goal would give me goosebumps and you could see how much she cared about the bigger picture.
Like I said before, the core of Growth Animals is ethics-driven. My business partner Chris was a trustee of another charity himself and our general business ethos is to give back a percentage of our time to do ‘good’. I was drawn to the vision of Little LifeSavers, and so volunteered to deliver the sessions in schools.”
What is the best part about volunteering?
“Oh without a doubt, the best part of volunteering is how involved the children get in the session and how they burst at the seams with questions! The children quite often can’t even sit still because they are so excited to practice on a mannequin! They are so innocent and unaware that this is a skill that will stay with them for life.”
What made you step up as a trustee?
“At the time, when I started my journey with Little LifeSavers, politically and in business there was a lot of negativity in the world. Joining the Little LifeSavers’ mission was a soothing tonic for my soul. With the charity, everyone is united in their goal and we are working towards something bigger.
Ultimately I wanted to do something in my working week that would directly impact people and society. Whereas in my day job I’d be working on long-term strategy and marketing, being able to see the immediate impact of the charity was really rewarding.
Being on a board of trustees was also the next step in me growing as a person – getting to speak to new people, getting insight into how a charity operates and helping to make decisions and really dedicate yourself to a long term vision.!
What is your role as trustee at Little LifeSavers?
“I am proud to be the Fundraising and PR Lead for Little LifeSavers. My experience in this sector perfectly fits the charity’s needs and I am excited to be leading the charge in this area. Fundraising and getting corporate support is critical to functioning and so I hope to be able to contribute to the growth of Little LifeSavers. I’m looking forward to working alongside the other trustees to really create a powerful charity, capable of reaching every child nationally.”
If you could send out any message what would it be?
“That due to the simplicity of the charity model, it is more than easy to volunteer yourself. With online training and a virtual booking system, the whole process is super easy. All Little LifeSavers asks for is just four sessions (one session is an hour) of your time in a year.
From the other side, if you’re looking to have a Little LifeSavers session running in your school or your child’s school then it’s also super easy to book! As a parent, hit up your child’s headteacher and get them in touch. Teachers, check out the system. Get in touch – our team does the hard work (for free!) and we get to teach basic lifesaving skills!”
Here at Little LifeSavers, we are thrilled to welcome Jen to the leadership team of Little LifeSavers. Her marketing experience, skillset, expertise and passion for doing good will be a driving force in the ongoing mission of Little LifeSavers growth as a charity.
We thank her for her commitment and we look forward to seeing all the good she gets up to!