Trustees Report

Achievements and Performance

For the year ended 30 September 2023

The year in context
Thankfully, the immediate pressures faced by the social care sector of the COVID-19 pandemic were receding this year and the longer-term impacts on the country in general and the sector in particular became much clearer.

The long-term toll that the pandemic had on care professionals became very clear, with recruitment and
retention issues becoming even more acute, as many chose to leave for other areas of the economy that were growing post-pandemic.

For the wider public, the recognition of the scale of Long COVID alongside the significant mental health impacts of the pandemic has fallen disproportionately on those with disabilities and those from poor and minority ethnic communities.

The hugely turbulent global and domestic economic situation, with inflation rates unseen for a generation, has hit our beneficiary groups particularly hard.

As well as the pressures and stresses felt by individuals in the communities that we serve to support, the economic and political instability of the year also served to delay and downgrade reforms to the social care sector.

All in all, this was an incredibly tough year for the social care sector, those who work in the sector and those supported by the sector. This has meant that the need for the Foundation’s work has never been more important but the scale of the challenges we seek to address has never been as great.

As noted above, this was the final year of the Foundation’s first Strategic Plan. Against the backdrop painted above, trustees have been reflecting carefully on the Foundation’s impact over its first five years and how best to position itself for the next chapter of its development.

Our objectives for this year
Trustees agreed a set of key objectives for this reporting year, the most notable of which were as follows:

  • To develop the Foundation’s Strategic Plan 2023/24-2027/28.
  • To continue to manage a portfolio of major partnerships effectively, ensuring that they deliver the expected impact and that there is a strong and trusting relationship between the Foundation and its partners through the effective use of the Grants Committee.
  • To review with trustees the balance between UK and overseas major partnerships, feeding any decisions into the Grant-Making Policy and the Grants Committee.
  • To continue to grow the number of applications to the Foundation’s small grants schemes, with a spread across all areas of CareTech Ltd’s operations.
  • To implement the Championing Social Care strategy to enable further growth across programmes.
  •  To continue to build the Foundation’s profile among its core audiences and to ensure a continued focus on efforts to build greater awareness and deeper understanding of its work amongst CareTech staff.
  • To ensure a continued focus on efforts to build greater awareness and deeper understanding of its work amongst CareTech staff.
  • To ensure rigorous reporting and effective management of all current Partnerships, with well-evidenced impact evaluation plans and reports using the Impact Assessment Framework informed by the Monitoring & Evaluation Report.
  • To publish our fourth Impact Report alongside our Annual Report.
  • To effectively manage the demand for new Partnerships, ensuring that the Foundation has a pipeline of powerful and innovative opportunities.
  • To ensure that the three small grants streams operate at full capacity, enthusing CareTech plc staff, in the UK and overseas, to take greater advantage of the schemes, particularly in respect of the Match-Funding grants.
  • To implement the agreed investment plan for the proceeds realised from the Foundation’s shares in CareTech plc.
  • To continue to implement the agreed Income Diversification Strategy.
  • To keep under close review the Foundation’s long-term financial sustainability in the light of the sale of CareTech plc and wider economic volatility.
  • To continue working with PEM on the annual audit to identify opportunities to further improve the charity’s systems and operations.
  • To ensure continued high levels of compliance with the Charity Commission’s Guidance for charities
    associated with non-charities and with the Code of Good Governance.
  • To implement the recommendations from the Foundations Practice framework self-assessment review.

As set out in this Report, trustees are pleased with the progress that has been made against all of these objectives.

Main achievements

The Foundation was established as a grant-making corporate foundation with ambitions to become a well- structured, ambitious and clear-sighted organisation, delivering meaningful impact to communities in the UK and overseas and delivering a unique contribution to the charitable marketplace. In so doing, trustees were clear that they wished to create a charitable Foundation of which the staff of CareTech and its service users would feel proud and in which they would be strongly engaged in its work.

As the Foundation enters the final year of its first five-year strategic plan, the Foundation has made significant progress in delivering on the vision set out by trustees. Since its establishment in 2017, the Foundation has distributed approximately £3,648,253 in grants and donations (£1,944,621 this year). The Foundation is now recognised as the leading corporate foundation in the social care sector.

With good governance, an effective trustee board and a high-achieving staff team in place, alongside a much clearer understanding of where the Foundation’s grant-making can best make an impact, the Foundation has delivered the following key achievements over the last year:

  • A strong portfolio of Partnership Grants recipients is in place, with new additions this year including those with Sense International, Alzheimer’s Society, MAITS and Carers Worldwide.
  • The Foundation’s fourth Impact Report sets out clearly the difference the Foundation has made to date, with 1,807,256 beneficiaries supported by the end of September 2022, as well as indirectly supporting 2,561,097 beneficiaries through 281 charities.
  • The cross-sector Championing Social Care initiative, hosted by the Foundation, has grown from strength to strength this year. The second Care Home Open Week enabled 2500 care homes to open their doors to the public – and over 100 MPs. The second Care Sector’s Got Talent programme attracted more applications and improved public audience. The return of the Care Sector Fundraising Ball was a particular success, raising over £400,000 for Alzheimer’s Society and the Care Workers’ Charity.
  • The Foundation’s external brand continues to build, with growing online and offline media recognition, enabling the Foundation to use its influence to further impact upon its core concerns and to contribute to wider debate in the social care sector.

In the last year, the Foundation was delighted to have been a finalist in the Corporate Foundation of the Year Award in the Business Charity Awards 2023 awards. Our CEO, Jonathan Freeman MBE, was also included for the second year running in the Social Care Top 30 awards.