Our Chair of Trustees Andrew Birchall gives an insight into what it means to him.
Chief Executive's monthly blog
This week has marked my eighth at the helm of CancerCare and the past two months have been a whirlwind of meetings as I endeavoured to meet staff, therapists, volunteers and clients across all areas of the charity.
Wherever I go, and whoever I meet, the resounding message is that CancerCare is not only a much loved local institution, but a vital service in the communities we serve across North Lancashire and South Lakeland.
I have seen first-hand the excellent work carried out by the CancerCare’s team ranging from fundraising coffee mornings to major events such as the local Chef Show in Ulverston. I am also looking forward to our forthcoming seasonal events including the annual Santa Dash, Leighton Hall Christmas Fair and our very first Christmas Craft Fair at Abbey House in Barrow.
Last week we were honoured to host the ‘Open the Window’ event at Slynedales which was a special opportunity to remember the three young people – Anne, Tricia and Paul - to whom the building’s stained glass window was dedicated on 11 November, 1990. It is 30 years since they were members of the Splinter Group at CancerCare and they all sadly died in 1989. It was a really poignant occasion and underlined the rich history of the charity and the special place it retains in so many people’s hearts long after they stop needing our services.
Operationally, the CancerCare strategy, which outlines the direction we will take over the next five years, is due for a refresh and we have been busy putting together a project team made up of staff and stakeholders from across the organisation who will have vital input into our future plans.
The group will have its first meeting next week and we will be getting in touch with people over the coming weeks to invite you to tell us what you think.
I have also been reflecting on the way in which I think we should be communicating through this blog. I want you to hear about all of our different projects and activities and so the team has decided that we will take it in turns and “spotlight” different areas of our work from service provision to fundraising activity and everything in between.
Finally, I was delighted to see our fun new Santa Dash video which we are hoping will inspire lots of people to join the event so, when it pops up on your social media feeds, be sure to share it far and wide!