I’m Alex Vernon, a writer, mum of two girls and devoted owner of the gorgeous Rosie (Staffies – they’re softer than you think). I live with my family in the Wye Valley, where the phone signal is dodgy but the views are beautiful!
I’ve been writing for charities for nearly 20 years. You can find dates and job titles on my Linkedin page. Here are some of my best bits:
- Working with Mile 91, I’ve been lucky enough to write dozens of volunteer stories for the British Red Cross. Among my interviewees have been award-winning podcasters and young volunteers supporting asylum seekers. I’ve interviewed a retired clinical psychologist who’s helped people in crisis all over the world. I’ve spoken to emergency response volunteers who’ve showed up for communities through floods, fires and storms. I’ve heard from shop volunteers who make someone’s day with a wave and a warm hello. And I’ve saluted the brave volunteers who provided vaccinations, food parcels and words of comfort during the Covid crisis. Red Cross volunteers are, in summary, extraordinary!
- Through Bluebell, I’ve interviewed some incredibly honest and eloquent parents who’ve experienced perinatal mental health difficulties. Here’s my blog about working on Bluebell’s 10 year anniversary report.
- Again with Mile 91, I produced 150 stories for the 150th anniversary of the TUC – one of the most fascinating projects of my career. Here’s a countdown of my top 10 TUC stories, starring heroic match women, an encounter with the real-life hero of Pride and an inspirational tea towel.
- I loved hearing from Victim Support staff about how my stories about their volunteers and clients made them feel proud to do their jobs. Here’s my blog that elaborates on this theme.
- I had a lot of fun writing a ‘spirit of place’ statement for The National Trust. This involved visiting Clent Hills to take in the sights, sounds and smells that make it a beloved destination for Black Country day trippers. I turned vegetarian aged 10 but I’ll confess that my mouth watered as I wrote about the sensational whiff of bacon butties wafting up the hill from the café…
- I’ll never forget sitting at my desk at Motivation, picking up the phone to the Telegraph and finding out they’d chosen us for their Christmas appeal. Here’s my blog with tips for applying for newspaper fundraising appeals.
- The Lady Mechanic Initiative in Lagos, Nigeria. An innovative new way to diagnose TB in Kampala, Uganda. Women farmers fattening crabs bound for tourists’ tummies on Zanzibar. During my five happy years at VSO, I was lucky enough to write stories about these innovative projects, plus many more.
And just before you go, here are two useful things to know about me:
- The recorder I use for interviews gives me broadcast-quality audio and I’ve taught myself to edit it. So I can provide you with audio as well as written stories.
- I’m not a photographer… but I’ve got a pretty good camera and can take some decent portraits if you need them. (For documentary photography and film, you need look no further than my friends at Mile 91.)