Macquillin to set up voluntary sector PR network

An account director plans to launch the first ever networking group for voluntary sector PROs.

Ian Macquillin, of Surrey-based TurnerPR, has already attracted interest from charities such as Friends of the Earth and World Society for the Protection of Animals. Both charities have recommended the group to their in-house comms teams, ­acc­or­ding to Macquillin.

The group has been conceived in a bid to integrate professionals' fundraising and PR. It will offer peer support and help members to work alongside one another to tackle difficult issues.

Macquillin said there were currently no networking groups for people who are actively promoting and publicising fundraising. The only initiative that compares is the ImpAct coalition, which is aimed at a more at a strategic, director level.

"I'm hoping that the group will be taking more of a hands-on, hard-hitting app­roach,' ­he said. ‘I would ­like us to do some original ­research measuring which areas of fundraising attract the most negative media coverage and also to ­see ­whether there is a difference ­between how fundraising, as opposed to charity in general, is portrayed in the press.'

The group will launch on 13 June and is backed by the Institute of Fundraising, of which Macquillin is a ­member.

Membership currently stands at 10 individuals and a further 15 people have been approached to join.

Before joining TurnerPR in March 2006, Macquillin was editor of Professional Fundraising magazine.

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