Olly Belcher joined Purposely Podcast to talk about her founder story and her absolute dedication to helping people living in poverty in India.
She talks about how fatherly influence (as well as personal invite from Mother Teresa) led her to dedicate her career to helping people living in poverty in West Bengal. Her father’s career in India led to many bed-time stories focused the wonders and mystique of India to a young impressionable Olly. We go deep into her founder story at the same time reflecting on the charities (her staff in West Bengal) 'inspirational' response to COVID-19.
We also delve into her ability to chronically overachieve, this included her University years where she gained a first class honours degree in Geography and a distinction in her Masters degree both from Oxford University. Olly then joined the World Bank in Washington DC where, amongst other achievements, she was awarded the World Bank Youth Innovation Fund. Her time at the World Bank was followed by a move to London where she worked for Accenture Strategy and also helped prepare the 5 year strategy for Accenture Development Partnerships. Back to her founder story… starting the charity Shivia in December 2008 Olly has been the Chief Executive since 2010. It was a brave move, not only was she giving up a great opportunity at the World Bank (a job that paid well and was secure with great prospects) it was also the time of the global financial crisis. These things did not phase Olly though and she has no regrets about the move she made or the life philosophy it has given her... 'there is never a perfect time to do something, you just need to trust your instincts and follow your passion'
So what does the charity do and what is Olly's role?
Shivia works with some of the poorest communities in West Bengal, India and its mission is to empower them to create livelihoods, boost income and inspire permanent change.
Poultry farming is their ‘flagship’ programme launched in 2011. It provides the tools and training (the ‘toolkit‘) for families living in poverty to start a small enterprise from home by raising chickens and selling the produce.
You will hear how Olly has become a skilled but reluctant fundraiser. She also forms Shivia’s overall strategy and works hard to support operations.
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