I first heard about the Moving Up Project from a Trailblazers representative talking at a Young Person’s hospital group that I attend monthly. A few of the members of the group had already done a placement at MDUK, so I was interested to find out more.
I started my placement at MDUK on Friday the 1st of March. I was given a choice of placement in the organisation, from advocacy to digital media. I was placed in the digital media / social media team, as per my request. I had done a little bit of social media tweeting before, for a university project to raise funds for The Mercury Phoenix Trust, and thought it would be useful to gain some more skills and experience in this area. I also use social media on a daily basis so thought this role would be quite interesting and would fit me well.
I decided to work on Fridays only as the travel to the MD office was quite far for me - SW13 to Southwark, including car, train, tube and then a 10 minute walk. However, it was still do-able and not as difficult as I had at first imagined. Ideally, in the future, I'd look for something closer to home but this opportunity at MD was too good to pass up.
On my first day I met the lovely Edita who showed me around the office and introduced me to the team. Everyone was really friendly. Suzannah, Head of Digital, showed me a few applications, like Microsoft Teams, which the organisation uses to manage and collaborate on projects.
Edita asked me at the start of my placement whether I needed any adaptations to be made. I requested a comfortable chair and a backrest, and was given many helpful options throughout the placement. Edita was very accommodating to my needs and it was nice to be working in an environment where people more aware of disability issues.
Next few weeks
Over the next few weeks I was given a variety of tasks to complete, such as creating posts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, using the application Social Report to schedule the posts on specific dates and times. Getting home and seeing the posts that I had written on my own Instagram feed, a few days later, was exciting.
I was also given the task to create some Google Analytics data reports to feedback to the team about how well a certain post on social media was doing. It gave me a bit more understanding about how and why an organisation uses social media.
I also made some short 'good luck' videos on the application Animoto. The digital team use this application to highlight their charity races like the London Marathon and ‘Oxford Town and Gown’. The Animoto application was easy to use and my first video can be found here. I really enjoyed this task as I got to be a little creative.
At the start of every Friday (the day I work), I was always greeted with a friendly hello, and then was given a run down of the tasks I needed to complete that day. The tasks were usually given to me on post-it notes or written down on paper and handed to me so it was clear what I needed to do.
I'm not quite sure what the future holds yet but working at MDUK has definitely given me a better understanding of what it is like to work in a large office environment and also more skills and experience, such as data entry, scheduling posts and research. Without the MDUK placement this type of experience would have been very difficult to get, so I’m very grateful for having the opportunity of working with such a nice, professional and welcoming team. If anyone is thinking about applying to the Moving Up Project, I definitely would recommend it. The office is lovely and everyone is really friendly.