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A Christmas message from the Chief Executive

Chief Executive Ron Giddens shares his Christmas message from St Christopher’s.

The end of the year is a traditional time to look back on the achievements and successes, the highs and the lows, and the challenges and disappointments of the past 12 months. We have been so busy at St Christopher’s there is a lot for me to cover!

I’m going to begin by saying a huge thank you to all our staff for the dedication, the care, the love and the support they provided this year. Our children and young people always say that our staff are the best thing about their homes, and this has been proven again in 2017.

There are too many successes to list them all here, so I want to celebrate a number of stand out moments as we go into the New Year:

  • This year we have been successful in securing funding for innovative new services, including our new Staying Close pilot supported by the Department for Education Innovation Programme.
  • One of our spot purchase children’s homes received an ‘Outstanding’ rating from Ofsted, which we are all so proud of. Congratulations to the team there and to all our other services who continue to receive positive inspection results.
  • For the first time we have registered an independent residential school that will provide educational support to children living in our care.
  • The Isle of Man Government have confirmed a two year continuation of the contract with St Christopher’s and expanded the size of both the Education and Wraparound teams with an additional teacher and therapist.
  • We have employed our first three apprentices, two on the Isle of Man and one in London.
  • Finally, we produced our first Impact Report for many years in the autumn to celebrate all that our children and young people achieved in the previous 12 months. This was a joy to produce and an excellent reminder about the difference St Christopher’s makes every day.

I could go on about the other things that have made 2017 great: the fun events that have taken place; the participation work with young people; the submissions we have produced for government calls to evidence; the conferences we have spoken at; the continuing roll out of social pedagogy; and the new fund available for staff training. I am just as excited for all the plans we have coming up over the next year.

Finally, I want to thank all of our partners and supporters for their dedication to supporting St Christopher’s and the work we do creating brighter futures for children and young people. We could not do it without you.

I wish everyone a very happy Christmas and a wonderful New Year.​