August 11, 2014  |  By  | 

Gérard Bocquenet took up his position as Director, Private Fundraising and Partnerships (PFP) in Geneva on 1 May 2014. For the frst PFP Newsletter under his leadership, the Internal Communication team sat with Gérard to talk about his take on the new role, the perspectives he brings to the job rom his past experience in the French National Committee, and lie in Geneva. In the Private Fundraising and Partnerships Plan for 2014-2017, the UNICEF family has committed to ambitious targets with regard to mobilizing funding and support from the private sector for UNICEF programmes. Six weeks into your time as the new PFP Director, are you losing any sleep over reaching those targets? Well, I generally don’t sleep much anyway – but not any less now than beore joining PFP. However, I do wake up very much aware o the act that the income targets o the Plan are ambitious and that this income is absolutely key or the organization. The Executive Director highlighted the importance o private sector undraising or UNICEF during his speech to the Executive Board in New York on 3 June. Everybody in the UNICEF private sector community – in the National Committees, the country ofces and in PFP – is well aware o the strategic priorities we defned in the Private Fundraising and Partnerships Plan. In order to achieve our goals, we must stay ocused on those priorities especially because we are working in very competitive markets. By the way, I think we should not be araid o talking about ‘competition’ when it comes to undraising; even though we know that some o our competitors are at the same time our partners in the feld. You are now the second former National Committee Executive Director having taken up a senior leadership role in ‘UNICEF international’ (Paloma Escudero, DOC Director is a former Executive Director of the Spanish National Committee). What perspectives do you think you bring to UNICEF HQ that may be different from that of other Division Directors? Paloma and I have two things in common when it comes to our previous work experience: We have led two airly large National Committees or a number o years but we have also both spent years in the private sector prior to joining the UNICEF amily. Paloma was previously at Procter and Gamble and I worked in the ood and the electronic goods industry. So what we bring to our respective roles are years o experience and expertise rom working in large private corporations in addition, o course, to the years with the National Committees. Both these dimensions o my experience are obviously important or my role here in PFP. First o all: I we want to work with the private sector, we need to understand how the private sector works – and I believe I do. My vision is to run PFP as a Division just as one would lead a private sector organization. And secondly: Having led the French National Committee or six years and having been on the Standing Group or three years, I also understand how National Committees work. It is important or us to keep in mind that not all National Committees work in the same way – because their markets and cultural settings are dierent. With 90 per cent o the revenue projected to be generated over the our years o the Private Fundraising and Partnerships Plan still coming rom the National Committees, these dierences need to be actored in when it comes to how we in PFP support them in terms o communication, advocacy and undraising. So coming back to your question: Yes, I suppose that my experience and perspectives are somewhat dierent but should be quite helpul to the work that we do in PFP. About PFP The Private Fundraising and Partnerships Division (PFP) was established in 2008 to coordinate private sector fundraising activities of UNICEF (including individual and corporate fundraising and sales of cards and products), to manage strategic relationships with National Committees and provide support to child rights advocacy activities of the National Committees. The Division is also responsible for broader corporate engagement with the private sector, including non-fundrais- ing partnerships, and coordinating, across the UNICEF family, the implementation of the ‘Strategic Framework for Partnerships and Collaborative Relationships’ adopted in 2009. Want to know more about PFP? Click here to access the PFP Intranet: National Committees HQ / RO / CO INTERVIEW WITH THE PFP DIRECTOR