Derek Lainsbury has a unique mixture of business acumen while also being kind and caring stemming from his training as a psychotherapist and counsellor. He has worked under highly stressful international disasters offering care and emergency counselling and is now Business Development Manager of TeleTrade. He has not left his compassion behind though, and in April, will be presenting a fund-raiser for AIDS victims and awareness in Cyprus.
Can you tell us about your new position as Business Development Manager of TeleTrade – DJ International Consulting Ltd
As a business development manager my role is to improve TeleTrade’s market position within the financial industry and achieve financial growth, build key customer relationships, and identify business opportunities, negotiate and close business deals and maintain extensive knowledge of current market conditions.
It is a senior sales position within the company and I work closely with the internal team, marketing staff, and other managers to increase sales opportunities and thereby maximize revenue for our organization. To achieve this, I need to find potential new customers, present our products to them, and ultimately convert them into clients, and thereby grow business in the future. I also help to manage existing clients and ensure they stay satisfied and positive. I call on clients, often being required to make presentations on solutions and services that meet or predict their clients’ future needs.
I enjoy developing a rapport with new clients, and continually improving the relationship. I also enjoy the challenge of presenting new solutions and services to clients.
Strategic planning is a key part of this job, since it is my responsibility to develop the pipeline of new business coming into TeleTrade which requires a thorough knowledge of the financial market, the solutions/services the company can provide, and of the company’s competitors, some of whom I have worked for.
This is quite a different direction from counselling and psychotherapy – how did the change in direction come about? Do you still do both?
You are right when you say this is quite a change in direction and I did move to Cyprus to retire! However, there are many similarities in the work I do now, both for TeleTrade and for LCPV. Not only have I counselled individuals with challenging problems, and worked in hospitals, clinics, a prison and residential treatment centre for addicts and alcoholics, in the UK, but also in large corporations particularly in the Netherlands, for example, Europol, the ICTY (Former Yugoslavian Tribunal), the EPO (European Patent Office) and with the American Ambassador in the Hague together with the Martin Luther King Foundation President, Wade Henderson. With all the organisations I’ve worked for and as owner and director of a psychotherapy training school, CounsellingEurope, I used the same skills.
Now as Vice President of LCVP – what is your role and why is it important to you?
Non-profit organizations provide a variety of services to enhance individuals lives and communities. As with top executives at for-profit businesses, vice presidents of non-profit organizations are responsible for financial and operational successes. I’ve always been interested in enhancing the lives of others since my own upbringing was not like many, however, that is somewhat irrelevant but what I can say is that I want people to live better lives than I had. My interest in LCVP is due mainly from some work and training I did at St John’s Hospital in London when I initially started my Psychotherapy Masters Degree. I saw many people die, alone and uncared for and developed an interest to support anyone who was suffering. I have personally lost many friends to both HIV and AIDS related illnesses and cancer.
CSR (Corporate social Responsibility) is often something which companies simply write about to look good, but don’t actually follow through. What are your thoughts and experiences?
As LCPV relies on donations from the community and individuals interested in the organisation, I believe it is my role to create public awareness initiatives that ensures the organisation is visible to the community and those interested in assisting the foundation. This includes coordinating fundraisers, community events and other programs. We believe the most effective social and charitable investments are made through strategic relationships with organisations dedicated to serving our communities, day in and day out. We align our fund-raising efforts with our core values and business strategies through these initiatives.
Our sponsors and supporters are generous and engaged within in the communities where HIV/AIDS is prevalent. We accept support from other local charitable organisations and work very closely with Freedom Dolls by sharing activities through our matching gift and volunteer programs. We find it difficult to engage many organisations due to the nature of the charity, with most people getting involved simply because they know someone or have somehow been affected by the illness.
There are many challenges faced when doing fund raising – what have you found to be most difficult? And, are the issues the same in Cyprus and other countries?
I have found it more difficult to fundraise in Cyprus purely because of the nature of the charity. We support those living with HIV/AIDS and are trying to provide education and information to prevent the spread of the illness. In Cyprus, unlike the UK and the Netherlands, where I upheld similar roles, HIV/AIDS seems to be considered less important, as the problem to most people on the island does not exist.
Do companies or individuals have any financial benefits or tax allowances for donations?
Yes! Cyprus Tax Law has tax incentives for companies who give donations to charitable organisations. A company can deduct the whole amount of the donation in their tax declaration as long as they have a receipt from the charity/organisation. There is no need for the charity to prove where the money is being spent.
What is the situation with HIV in Cyprus at present?
Statistics on cases of HIV/AIDS in Cyprus are inconclusive and seem to be a closely guarded secret. There have been over 500 reported cases of HIV registered at the Larnaca clinic since 2012. This figure has been confirmed from “file codes” as nobody at the clinic goes by name – always a number. Appropriately, LCPV has merged with Freedom Dolls, another registered charity and a voice for victims of human trafficking and sexual exploitation. The harsh reality is that many sex slaves become HIV+.
The lifestyle trend in Cyprus, more often, steers towards “if you don’t have it – why care?” LCPV does care and is offering a vital role as one of the Cyprus’ leading HIV and sexual health charities.
Currently, Cyprus has the highest increase of new cases of HIV per population in Central Europe, so apart from helping those who are already living with HIV/AIDS, L.C Positive Voice aims to educate young people through schools and colleges. Without knowledge, our aims of reducing the illness will be very difficult. We hope in the future to establish a strong network of support in the school system.
Our aim is to reduce the number of cases and give support to those already living with the illness. While these numbers are not exact ,I can say that approximately 220 new cases of HIV have been reported in the last 36 months. There are, of course many cases left undiscovered and undiagnosed due to ignorance, fear and misunderstanding.
People living with HIV/AIDS recognise that government services cannot do everything for them and turn to people like us for the additional support they require to enhance their lives and way of living. What matters to them is that services respect them, understand them for who and what they are, and as far as possible, respond to the individuality of their needs in a caring supportive and confidential way. Much can be done to improve this situation
Can you tell us about the next fund raiser – the show “Totally Tina and Rob Williams”
On April 5th in Limassol, the LCPV charity will host its first major fundraising event. The event will be supported by Justine Riddoch, Totally Tina Tribute Act – tribute to Tina Turner and Mikey Barber, aka Rob B. Williams – tribute to Robbie Williams. The event will be held at the Zante Bar and Restaurant, Troodos Road, Polemidia, Limassol, and begins at 8pm. Tickets include a hot buffet, allocated seating, and entry into a prize draw donated by Salamis Cruises. Totally Tina & Rob B Williams are both voted as Best UK Tribute Acts Tina Turner and Robbie Williams tribute and have very kindly waived their fees in support of this event making it possible.
Where can people purchase tickets?
Derek Lainsbury: +357 99 039127
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or
Chrysi Iacovou-Harrington: +357 99 139670