Summarised financial information for the year ended 31 December 2016
It is my pleasure to introduce our Annual Report for 2016, my first as Chair of the Ear Foundation.
My first year was not uneventful as not only did I step in to the shoes of a long-standing chair (John Atkins) but we also had the retirement of Sue Archbold and the appointment of Mel Gregory as the new Chief Executive. These changes coupled with the increasingly challenging times faced by the sector as a whole have contributed to making this both an interesting and rewarding year.
Sound foundations were established under the guidance of John and Sue, culminating in the successful opening of the Sherman Centre in 2015, a project that was completed within budget in a time that has presented many financial challenges to all charities. As you will see from the Trustees’ Report 2016 has been a year in which we have both consolidated and built on those sound foundations. Although income for the year was lower this was largely due to the large sum received in 2015 in respect of the new building, which is now providing us with a valuable resource and the ability to develop both existing and new income streams as well as allowing us to provide an increasing number of services. We have continued to maintain our charitable spend in the period and have maintained and enhanced the excellent reputation that we have in the field amongst professionals, families, users and other charities in the sector. The Trustees’ Report will give you a feel for the diverse activities we are involved in and most importantly the difference that we make in the field of deafness. We continue to work extensively with professionals and families both nationally and internationally, maintaining a welcoming presence to all who are impacted by and interested in the field of deafness.
We would not be able to do what we do without a wonderful team around us and the invaluable support of numerous organisations and individuals. Much of this support is unwavering and from a staff perspective we are lucky to have so many people who frequently go above and beyond – not only working hard in their day jobs but also organising and attending events outside of work. I know that I speak for Mel as well when I say that the continued support of our trustee board, staff and the many individuals and organisations who raise money and awareness of our services, use our services and most importantly benefit from our services has made this year much easier as well as very rewarding.
2017 and the years ahead will undoubtedly bring more challenges not least as a result of Brexit and the continued pressures on the sector, but with a strong team around us and your continued support we will meet these challenges head on.
Valerie E Steward BSc ACA FCCA FRSA
Chair of the Trustees’ Board
Any questions on finance should also be directed to the Chief Executive.