Haroon Sheikh, Chairman of The CareTech Foundation and CEO of CareTech Plc, is one of the UK’s leading entrepreneurs, philanthropists and community figureheads. He established the CareTech Foundation with his brother, Farouq Sheikh, to benefit communities and individuals in need in the UK and abroad. Below, Haroon sets out his reasons for establishing the CareTech Foundation and his hopes for the future.
In 1993, my brother Farouq and I set up CareTech plc to provide high-quality residential care services for people with learning disabilities. From our first single small care home, with the support of our dedicated employees, we have grown the company into one of the largest providers in the UK in its field. Our vision has always been to make a positive difference to individuals and communities. Building on the success of the company, we saw the development of a corporate foundation as the next step to deliver meaningful change to causes close to our heart and to support our local communities.
I come from a close-knit family where helping others less fortunate and being charitable has been an underlying theme to all the work we undertake. It was with this motivation and the strong positive influence from our parents that we established our family foundation – the COSARAF Charitable Foundation, with the support of our mother. Seeing at first-hand the impact we have had from this social enterprise, Farouq and I were inspired to set up a Foundation that would benefit areas in need as well as align with the important values and philosophy ingrained in CareTech plc and thus embarked on founding the CareTech Foundation.
Since its launch in 2017, the CareTech Foundation has made great strides in unlocking innovative and high impact programmes with reputable partners, both locally and internationally. From the successful diagnostic meeting with Skills for Care, the steady progress in the development of the digital app for care leavers under our Barnardo’s collaboration, to the sharing of expertise on mental health issues with our partnership in Pakistan with the British Asian Trust, I am delighted to see these programmes starting to take real shape.
I am particularly pleased with the success of the Foundation in supporting the fantastic charity fundraising activities undertaken by CareTech plc employees under the match-funding initiative. From bake sales to running marathons to climbing mountains, it is great to see the achievements and vitality of CareTech plc employees across the UK. The Family and Friends grant scheme over the past few months has further emphasized the need to support the family, friends and wider communities of CareTech Plc staff facing hardship.
Looking at our most recent partnership with the Care Workers Charity as well as other projects in the pipeline, we look forward to another exciting year supporting the local and international communities. It is still early days for the Foundation, but the trustees and I have high hopes for the years ahead of the Foundation’s ability to deliver meaningful change to our communities.