Lifeline Project Annual Review 08/09

Chair's Report

Firstly I would like to thank all our staff on behalf of the Board of Trustees for all their efforts this year. It has been another successful year for Lifeline and this is due to the hard work and commitment of our workforce.

 

Last year, we told you about Lifeline’s strategic review and our key priorities for taking us into the future. We told you we continuously aspire to improving and to delivering excellent services that work alongside drug users and communities towards high quality outcomes. We also told you we ensure our services are properly governed and that funds are well managed in the interests of providing value to the sector and society: that we focus on our workforce – our biggest asset in engaging and working alongside people affected by substance misuse.


At Lifeline we are committed to learning and sharing what we know, and are open to change. We are committed to working with the sector to ensure the lives of those affected by substance use do not suffer as the sector changes. We participate in matters affecting the sector and do not shrink from engaging with the complexity that substance use problems bring. Nor do we wish for the voices of recovering drug and alcohol users, the vulnerable and marginalised, or workers and volunteers to be drowned out as the political and economic priorities move through a period of flux.


During the course of the year these priorities have become ever more tangible and critical. I am grateful to the staff and Board members who adopt a rigorous, responsible and thought-through approach to managing our finances. It is ever more important we consider not only growth and sustainability, but how to ensure all our activities are delivered in the most cost effective way. We hold fast to the principle that as much spend as possible goes directly to the priorities we have established, and that our purpose remains anchored within our financial governance.

 

At Lifeline we are committed to learning and sharing what we know, and are open to change. We are committed to working with the sector to ensure the lives of those affected by substance use do not suffer as the sector changes.

 

We have continued this year to develop more outward facing relationships. We need to do this not as a short-term project, but because there are radical and irreversible shifts underway and because our sector needs to be lean, effective and tailored to our ability to impact. Just as public spending decisions are being made, transformation in local governance also continues to challenge our commitment to learn and develop. We do not believe that any one narrow approach to delivering services can benefit everyone. Lifeline believes that people have a right to aspire to health, wellbeing and financial and social inclusion. We believe people also have the right to support and dignity when in trouble or chaos, and a right to a better quality of life however bad things get. That means working hard from end to end in every sense.
We are always prepared to learn from others. We are working with our staff and stakeholders to establish ever more direct ways of fulfilling our objectives, and I do not underestimate the degree of accountability we have to them.


I would like to thank those Board Members who resigned during the year (Mick Barwood, Eddie Kane, David Mackintosh, Linda Brady, and Guy Berry) for all their work as Trustees. As a result of their departure we are looking to recruit new Trustees and will be advertising in the Guardian newspaper. We are very keen all interested parties apply.


As always I am keen to hear your views on our Annual Review. If you wish to give feedback please do so at: webeditor@lifeline.org.uk.