Ambassador Stephen Hayes

Stephen Hayes1

Stephen Hayes is 63 and lives with his wife and two children in Glasgow. Stephen is a Shared Interest Society investor and Ambassador.

Stephen was born and raised near Liverpool docks, this together with his father's tales of war service in Burma, he says made him aware of countries overseas with needs far different to our own.

Stephen worked in a local hospital during the holidays sharing information with overseas health management students. As moderator of the International Health Management MA at London's South Bank Polytechnic, Stephen would host overseas students for spells of management experience at the various hospitals he was involved with in the UK.

In 1994 Stephen took up a post in NHS management which brought him to Scotland. Here Stephen formed a link with a hospital in Kathmandu to enable their nurses to train in the high dependency unit.

This is when I felt a deeper engagement with the developing world and moved with my family to Karachi to manage a not-for-profit primary health care company in Pakistan.

Stephen continued his relationship with Pakistan when he returned to Scotland in 2002 to work in international consultancy around health management. Stephen's work has taken him to a broad range of countries including Nigeria, Kenya and Tajikistan.

Speaking about how he became interested in the Society, Stephen said: "Shared Interest is an innovative concept in that it goes far beyond charitable giving in using an individual's savings - which may be needed again one day but can be put to good use in the interim -to finance fair trade businesses that may not be able to find financial support elsewhere. I was also drawn to the organisation's ethical basis, and mutual principles in working co-operatively, along with its transparency.

Stephen, who first became an Ambassador in 2006, said: "The idea of becoming a voluntary ambassador for Shared Interest was attractive because I am sure there are so many people of goodwill in the UK who would readily become investors but haven't yet heard of the organisation. Being an ambassador is rewarding in that not only is the cause worthy but the message is almost always received with courtesy and intrigue.

Shared Interest has strong support here in Scotland in terms of investment but I would like to grow the volunteer network in my local area."