2019 has also seen us win the “Good Web Guide” award for having the best charity website in the sector; (loosely translate this into having the best marketing team in the sector). Katie Marshall from our Leicestershire services won the Complex Support Worker award at the National Learning Disability & Autism Awards in July, our ‘Keep Going Don’t Stop’ group and Ciaran Bradley were named as part of the Dimensions UK Learning Disabilities and Autism Leaders List. We were among the winners of the Big Build competition for the Considerate Constructors National Scheme and our very own Lorraine Devereux won the Rising Star award for the Institute of Fundraising for the Chilterns region. We are also very proud to have announced the exciting news that working alongside Dementia UK we are in the midst of employing the first Admiral Nurse who will work solely with Adults with Learning Disabilities. 

Add to that a number of charitable grants including a £33,000 grant from the Morrisons Foundation which will fund a sensory room for the young people that we support in Hertfordshire and £13,000 in sponsorship from those incredibly kind and yet slightly mad folk that run marathons for fun.

All of that continues to be ably supported by the quietly modest and dedicated men and women who work in our offices all over the country and who hold us all up while we run around showing off in front of commissioners, speaking at conferences and winning awards.

It’s difficult to believe that I started work with MacIntyre 344 days ago. Much has happened since then; it’s been a very busy year for us all.

My first month with MacIntyre was spent basically ‘interviewing’ anyone I could find who had the time to speak to me, it was supposed to be my induction but I really just listened to you tell me how much you all loved working for this charity and how everyone you worked with was a truly excellent person and why, if you had your way, you would never consider working for any other organisation.

I believe that we’d all agree that the one unspoken mandatory qualification for working in social care is kindness and that we have bucket loads of that quality walking around each and every care home, office, school, academy, Lifelong learning centre and tenancy that we set foot in every day.

I’d like to end with one of my favourite lines of poetry that I think sums it up quite nicely:

“On that best portion of a good man's life, his little, nameless, unremembered, acts, of kindness and of love” 

(Tintern Abbey, William Wordsworth, 1758)

I would sincerely like to wish you all a very peaceful end to 2019 and to conclude, a few words from my most excellent colleagues in operations…

Becs Gratton

Director, Adult Services

“MacIntyre – it’s a purple thing! It’s the people; it’s us, you and me. We live our values year round it’s just that at this time of year the rest of the world cottons on to the fact it’s a good thing to be kind, to have compassion, to see the possibilities and recognise the strengths and skills that others have. So here’s to us – have a great Christmas and let’s take the purple into 2020!”

Emma Killick

Director, Adult Services

“Like our adult social care, our children and young people’s provision has faced many external challenges over the last few years, and 2019 was no different. However, the demand for high quality education and support has never been greater, so we look forward to 2020 and the opportunities that it brings. We remain determined to touch the lives of an increasing number of disabled young people and their families. This is fuelled by our belief that all children and young people deserve a happy and fulfilled childhood and adolescence, and that together we can make memories that will last a lifetime. The ‘MacIntyre Way’ means that our compassion does not waver, we show resilience in face of adversity, and this is how we help children and families to achieve above and beyond expectation. So here’s to everything we have learned and achieved in 2019, and the excitement of what is yet to come in 2020!”

Rachelle Russell

Director of Education