As we move from one business year into the next it’s worth taking stock of how we’re evolving as an organisation to better serve our local communities.
2013/14 was a year of celebration and growth at Groundwork. We marked our 30th anniversary in October and celebrated with a number of key partners. The event also helped us to look forward and identify how we can continue to be an effective partner for the next 30 years. Throughout the coming year we will be working to refine our vision for the future of the Trust and set out our medium to long-term ambitions for the organisation.
We have built on our delivery of programmes in Bolton and Bury. From November 2013, we received a transfer of projects and programmes previously delivered by Groundwork Bury & Bolton. We are now engaged with a number of partners across these two boroughs to better understand their needs. We’re keen to replicate some of the highly successful work we have established in Oldham and Rochdale, as well as exploring new opportunities and different ways of working.
A challenge faced by many organisations in the voluntary sector is how to maintain service delivery in a climate of austerity and cuts to grants and other funding streams. As the graphic below shows, we have successfully evolved our balance of income over the past few years in order to better position the Trust and ensure its long-term viability. We exceeded £4m turnover in 2013/14 and now receive more than 50% of our income from private sector partners.
A key part of winning contracts and showing that we are continuously improving as an organisation is through our accreditations, kite-marks and standards. We have recently gained the ISO 9001 accreditation for our quality management system and improved our Investors in People rating by achieving the Silver standard. This recognition is a testament to the staff at Groundwork and their commitment to the pursuit of excellence in their day to day work. They believe strongly in making a positive difference to the lives of local people and contributing to the Groundwork mission of changing places and changing lives in Bolton, Bury, Oldham and Rochdale.
May I take this opportunity to thank all our funders and partners for your continued support. It is through these strong partnerships that win-win solutions to local challenges can be found and delivered on the ground. We look forward to working with you again in the coming years and are keen to establish new partnerships with organisations that share our ambitions. Here’s to 2014/15 – a year of continued challenges, opportunities and sustainable change for individuals and local communities alike.
By Stuart Brierley, Finance & Corporate Services Director