Skip to content

Ask Charlotte 2 — Initiative for Initiatives


Author(s): Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Publication (Outlet/Website): Medium (Humanist Voices)

Publication Date (yyyy/mm/dd): 2018/10/17

Charlotte Littlewood is the Founding Director of Become The Voice CIC. A grass roots youth centred community interest company that she has built in response to the need to tackle hate, extremism and radicalisation within communities and online.

Scott Douglas Jacobsen: To be involved in activist work to humanitarian efforts, it takes an intrinsic level of motivation. Indeed, the focus and perseverance need to be high as well. Finance cannot be the motivating factor. It will have to be ethics. What drives you?

Charlotte Littlewood: So, from a very young age, I was interested in human rights, and what we can do to protect humanity from gross violations of human rights. At school, I was a Holocaust memorial ambassador. I did a law degree with the aim of working in human rights. Whilst doing the law degree, the war in Syria broke out. There was very much a sense of the next human rights issue being around a clash of civilization between East and West, and cultures and religion, rather than states and state power.

I started reading and learning Arabic. I started reading the Quran as well. I come from an atheist background but then I took a big interest in faith and religion in university. I took an interest in Christianity and Islam. I was then equipped for a job in cohesion and integration work — working with faiths and minority groups. Eventually, It led me to start my own community interest company in that. That has always been my drive. It is to tackle human rights abuses and stand for minority rights abuses but from a standpoint of bringing us all together and cohesion.

I don’t work on human rights from the perspective that we should put minorities above everyone else. No matter what they’re believing in or action they’re involved in. It is involving everyone on the same level, bringing everyone together, and making sure no one’s rights are violated. For instance, I would not work with a minority group that believed homosexuals should be thrown off the cliff and stoned to death simply because they are a minority group — as we have seen in a shift with some leftwing thinking.

We are pro-individual liberty and the right to choose sexuality. If you take a key tenet like that, it is about bringing everyone aboard with that way of thinking and protecting those people’s human rights rather than standing with a minority over everyone. That is my belief system. That is what I felt is very important and needed to be done to protect the world from future genocides and huge atrocities against any kind of group. It is bringing us together on the central message of cohesion and belonging togetherness.

Jacobsen: How do you overcome the inevitable setbacks in the process of founding and growing an organization — noting, of course, BTV was started in January 2018?

Littlewood: It is important, to note. We are very, very young. We are only just developing our funding strategy. We had some bits while in Palestine. But we need a more sustainable model. We are working with Think Try Do, which gives free support to Exeter alumna students to build their businesses and social enterprises. They are helping with being more product focused and meeting with schools around the products, getting an idea of what people’s needs and wants are, getting a wishlist in essence, and then matching that with funds to help pay for the work to be done if the school needs it.

We are working with that model for our products. What is needed? Will the funds cover the need? With regard to Palestine, which is a big project that we would like to return to again, we have funding meetings from October 20th to October 24th with thinktanks, philanthropists, and trusts, they will hear our report from the Palestine Project (just finished) and our proposals moving forward.

That is really exciting. But at the moment, it is about building out core objectives and core products, matching what needs and products with have with appropriate funds, and using what we can including free tools — Think Try Do has been useful and then using what other free human resources we can. So, one of my directors is good online. She built the website and doing that for free. It is under the knowledge of paid roles when we get some funding.

My other director coming back to Palestine once we have a project; he will help with the bids and funding. it is about passionate people willing to invest their time, they are also able to put being a director on their CV, which is good. It is getting whatever free support that you can get. I set myself a goal. It is about being realistic. If I haven’t be funded by January or haven’t got the Palestine project funded by a philanthropist or a trust, then I will shift a lot more of the responsibility of the CIC to the directors.

One has a part-time job. One is a masters student; financially, both are comfortable and can do it in their spare time. For me, it is full-time. However, I am optimistic. The meetings for October are promising, I am hoping to talk with you again after that time, to see how it has gone. It can give some insight into whether what we have done is successful. If it successful, it means that we will have our first successful money-raising after 7 months. A lot of CRCs and charities do not see the first bit of significant money for a year.

Jacobsen: Thank you for the opportunity and your time, Charlotte.


In-Sight Publishing by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. Based on a work at


© Scott Douglas Jacobsen and In-Sight Publishing 2012-Present. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Scott Douglas Jacobsen and In-Sight Publishing with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. All interviewees and authors co-copyright their material and may disseminate for their independent purposes.

Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: