Three minute interview with Rebecca Murray
In this interview, we make reference to Bridge the Gap (BTG). This is a joint fundraising platform for Tax Help for Older People and TaxAid. The donations brought in are split between both charities, to support people in poverty who cannot afford paid tax advice.
1. Could you tell us a little about yourself?
I am a barrister at Devereux Chambers, with a tax advisory and litigation practice in Private Client, corporate tax, and VAT. I left my role as Vice President in the tax department at JP Morgan in 2008 to pursue a career at the bar, prior to which I was a tax manager at Grant Thornton, where I qualified with the CTA (and ATT) and latterly worked in National Tax on client transactions and tax technical training for employees.
2. Why are you supporting the BtG campaign?
Charity begins at home! All those working in tax should be supporting the fantastic charities through the BtG campaign. The charities change lives by providing tax advice and support at critical times to those who wouldn’t otherwise be able to get it. The pandemic devastated the lives of millions of people and BtG was able to provide them with much needed assistance in accessing government support, especially in the CJRS and SEISS schemes. I am really proud to have assisted them in fundraising over the past few years to make this and other great work possible.
3. What sort of fundraising have you been involved in for BtG?
My first significant fundraiser was at the start of the pandemic, liaising with the CIOT, who hosted me and two other speakers (Emma Chamberlain and Emma Pearce) in a Budget Update webinar to its members. The event raised £15,000 and was so well received I have done one for the past three years (latterly with Heather Self and Emma Chamberlain). We have loyal attendees and supporters.
I also donate to BtG and participate enthusiastically in events hosted by other fundraisers (even when they involve quizzes, which I dislike hugely…).
4. What do you like best about fundraising?
Providing help in a seemingly hopeless situation: At the start of the pandemic, some supporters seemed to think that because physical events weren’t happening BtG would struggle to raise funds at all. I begged to differ and really enjoyed demonstrating what was possible by doing the first fund raising webinar at the start of the pandemic, causing many, many more fund-raising webinars to take place.
I have also enjoyed involving the tax profession in my fundraising for BtG and raising awareness for the charities.
5. What’s the worst part?
Um, nothing so far.
6. Do you have any tips for anyone else considering fundraising for BtG?
I like to find a win-win when asking people for their money (in any situation!). So I knew the first webinar was a success when a spokesperson for the CIOT said of them “we are able to provide valuable services to members while at the same time helping vulnerable people – a real win-win”.