• Name: Emma Callery
  • Job title:  Website editor
  • Joined the team:  November 2019

How did you get into your role and come to work for Katharine House?

For many years I was a freelance book editor but then I moved across to the dark arts of digital, from which I've never looked back.

I was taking a break between jobs and hoping to find work closer to home. My previous role had been as a website manager at Which?, the Consumer Association, with a ridiculous 2-hour commute each way, and I fortuitously noticed that the Marketing Manager here was looking for help in the marketing team. I grabbed the opportunity to see what I could do with the website, volunteering for a day a week, as it looked like it needed some TLC.

During the pandemic, I was employed as a freelancer for three days a week and then in September 2021, I was made permanent. Result! 20-minute commute and a lovely work environment.

What’s a typical day like?

I can safely say there’s no such thing as a typical day, which is what I particularly enjoy about my role. I’m part of the marketing team – there are only three of us and we all work part time, so we have to be very efficient and flexible to support every team across the charity and the clinical teams.

My to-do list at present includes the following things.

  • Create a page and form so that any of our supporters who are running an event can book one of our Community Ambassadors to come and talk about the work of the hospice.
  • Ensure our comms plan for all this year’s challenge fundraising events is up to date.
  • Do the monthly digital report to see how people are using the website, including making donations, and which pages are most frequently visited and can we make any improvements.
  • Do the weekly update of the carousel on the home page, which showcases the care and help we provide at the hospice as well as promoting a forthcoming fundraising event. 
  • Write some copy about Open Gardens for the next issue of The Rose magazine, which we’re all currently working hard on to ensure it’s designed and proofread ready to be sent to our supporters at the start of May.
  • Add links to the relevant pages on the website to this Meet the Team interview! 

That’ll do for now!

What do you wish people knew about hospice care?

That it’s not only about caring for people in their last few days; that it’s holistic, from home to hospice (and sometimes back to home again), and that the hospice is a cheerful place to visit and stay at. The atmosphere across the hospice building is always one of positivity and a deep concern for the care that is tailored to every patient and their family’s needs.  

I also wish that more people knew that although the NHS contributes to the funding of hospices across the UK, this is only a third of the total that’s need to keep the hospice going. The care in a hospice is free at the point of use, but this is only because of the immense hard work of the charity team and the incredible support from our community to ensure that Katharine House remains a cherished care provider.

How does it feel to work for the hospice?

Whenever anyone asks me where I work, I always feel so proud to say that I’m at Katharine House as it’s such a well-known and much-loved charity. I always look forward to my days at the hospice, partly because running a website is the best fun, but mainly because I so enjoy my colleagues. I love their dedication, enthusiasm, creativity, great humour and – let’s face it – their baking skills.

What makes Katharine House so special?

All of the above!

Now for some quick-fire questions… 

If I had to sum up my role in one sentence, I’d say: ensuring that the KHH website accurately meets the wide needs of our patients, their families and our community fundraisers. 

My highlight since joining Katharine House is: creating the EPiC Resource Centre, which provides information on all aspects of palliative and end-of-life care, including financial, social, emotional and bereavement support. Check it out! 

If I could go anywhere in the world, I’d go to: Amroth beach in Pembrokeshire. We spent a great deal of time here when I was a child and I’m now looking forward to taking my grandson there this summer so that we can build sandcastles, sand boats and explore the rockpools. 

My all-time greatest song is: Ghosteen by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. Although it's a whole album, it really should be classified as one long song. I find it incredibly moving, intense and beautiful and return to it again and again.  

If I won the lottery, I would buy: a natty little electric sports car, or a natty big electric sports car. 

People are often surprised when I tell them: that I play the violin in local orchestras and in a quartet for weddings and parties, love noodling around on the piano and singing in choirs.

My idea of a perfect day is: being at home with all my family. Getting in a good walk; sitting at the kitchen table, talking, eating and drinking, and then putting on some great music. 

My favourite thing to eat is: cheese, cheese, cheese. 

I never miss an episode of: The Archers

Without doubt, the best animals are: birds, when they’re singing their little hearts out. 

The best advice I’ve ever been given is: to set aside anything you can’t influence. 

My proudest moment was: Can I say moments? The arrival of our daughters into this world. 

My favourite way to unwind is: in the summer, tending to my garden; in the winter, tending to my knitting. 

My go-to biscuit is: a KitKat – but it has to be the dark chocolate variety. 

My all-time favourite film is: Inception, or anything by Christopher Nolan; just love his creativity so much. 

I’m currently listening to: Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 4 so that I’m up to speed for my next concert. 

If I was stranded on a desert island, I would want: my piano and endless sheet music to play.