Welcome to Our New Head of Fundraising & Communications – Margherita

Posted on: May 12th, 2023

Hello everyone!

We are happy to introduce you all to our new member of staff, Margherita!

Margherita has just started working for Orchard OCD as the Head of Fundraising and Communications. She will manage Orchard’s relationships with partners, donors, and collaborators.

In this week’s blog, we learn more about Margherita and the work she will be doing for Orchard OCD.

Hello Margherita! How are you feeling starting work at Orchard OCD?

Hi! I am delighted to start working at Orchard. I have been knowing Orchard since 2020, and I have always felt entirely represented by its purpose and mission towards raising awareness about OCD and advocating for more financial investment in research into OCD. I am also excited at the idea of collaborating with interdisciplinary professionals who share my strong passion for mental health and work for a world where all individuals suffering from OCD can access timely and effective treatment for their condition.

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

I am 27 years old, and during the last few years, my studies and work have taken me to live partly in the UK – in London first and then in Cambridge – and partly in Milan, Italy, my native country.

I have a Psychology bachelor’s and a master’s in Clinical Mental Health Sciences from University College London. I have always been keen on raising awareness around OCD, advocating for those suffering from it and for more research into OCD and related disorders.

As a teenager and young adult with severe OCD, when I was at my lowest point due to this mental illness at age 18, and then again at age 23, I decided to turn the tables nor allow the OCD to continue to rob me of my health, relationships, and career ambitions. I decided that one day, I would help people with OCD through my work, turning my mental pain into an opportunity for myself and many other OCD sufferers.

In my background, there is no lecture, book or scientific article that can match what I have learned about the complexity of OCD by experiencing it on my own skin for several years. I sincerely want my work to impact how health professionals – not just those in the mental health niche – and societies perceive OCD until this illness is entirely given the public attention, respect, and financial resources it deserves.

Thank you very much, Margherita!

What are you working on to start things off at Orchard?

I am learning many new things on Orchard’s website and social media management to continue Juliet’s work of expanding Orchard’s media channels.

I’m also developing a new Orchard OCD funding conflict-of-interest policy, which aims to guarantee that Orchard’s funding decisions are made fairly and transparently.

I’m very excited about the OCD Patient Registry that Orchard recently developed through a collaboration with the University of Hertfordshire and that is receiving the first applications. I believe the OCD Registry represents an excellent and necessary means to collect information from individuals with OCD to be matched with potentially suitable studies for them to participate in. By grouping the highest possible number of individuals with OCD into one database, it will be significantly easier for researchers to find an adequate number of participants for their studies and, hence, to produce reliable results.

We have many other plans for the upcoming months, and I look forward to working on them and sharing our work with everyone!

What are your hobbies outside of work?

I enjoy practising yoga regularly and going for long walks in my spare time. I love walking both in the city and in nature. When I am alone, I love stopping in some nice café to read a good book while having a cup of tea.

I also love dancing, spending time with my friends, with whom I share much of my private life and travel, going to the movies, enjoying happy hours, the theatre, and many other things!

Welcome Margherita!

Got any fundraising or communication ideas? Please email Margherita at margherita@orchardocd.org to start a conversation.

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