Monday, 14 March 2011

80% less 100% delivery - Cara Evans, Operations Director

As some of you may have read, The Communication Trust has recently learned that we have funding for another two years. Happy days! Now the real work begins... We have 80% less funding than we had hoped for our national year programme of work – whilst on the face of it is the cut is disappointing, the reality is that it could have been far worse.

We have though secured more for our core programme of work than we have done over recent years, which means that the combination of funding for the two programmes is roughly the same as that which we received for the current financial year. This presents us with two challenges. Firstly, managing everyone’s expectations regarding the national year as we will not be making the huge media splash that many people were hoping for. That said, the level of local support that we are seeing is amazing - our recent regional events saw 600 local practitioners coming to share their ideas. What was even more amazing was that some of those that attended and contributed to the events didn't even know if they had jobs from April. Money can't buy that type of commitment.

Secondly, we need to continue to offer value for money whilst ensuring that we keep to our core principle of ensuring that our consortium partners receive the higher percent of our funding. This means everyone we work with needs to ensure that they offer the most cost effective service without affecting quality. This is a challenge indeed but one which the sector knows all too well how to overcome as it something it has always had to do. I have no doubt our partners will work with us to deliver an impactful programme of work with all the funding we have available.

One final point this. This is the first time since the Trust was founded that we have our funding agreed before we start the programme of work, which makes planning and budgeting that much easier! Here’s to an exciting year.

Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Seeing the wood through the trees - Eve Wagg, Programme Manager

The regional briefing events have now finished. Phew. In 2 months we transformed a seed of thought into an organised roadshow of 5 regional events to brief local ‘movers and shakers’ on how they can help execute Hello across the country.

Hello isn’t a top down initiative, we want to enthuse, support, guide and help local leads to spread the word and make change happen in their local settings. This way we can reach the most amount of children, parents and young people.

Now wise people often say there is no ‘I’ in Team. This is very true. Without an exceptionally hard working, committed and slightly mad team these events wouldn’t have happened. In brief we...
- Reached 592 practitioners across the country in 21 days
- Distributed over 6,100 Hello materials and many more from our consortium and sponsors
- Heard from 9 Local Authorities about their local initiatives
- Confirmed 102 communication leads
- Met with 127 representatives from a possible 152 top tier local authorities, along with many schools, colleges, universities and other individual settings.

This is not to mention the fun we had along the way. Other highlights included...
- Rating premier inns and conference sandwiches
- Tea and winegums
- Eating far too many Percy pigs on long train journeys
- Trying not to hit people with our banners as we squeezed onto the 5:42 to Leeds
- Completing the crossword
- Packing, unpacking, repacking hundreds and hundreds of cardboard boxes.

So thank you to everyone who attended, showed their support and helped out at these events. Now we can finally see the wood through the trees and start putting plans into practice. Not to mention catch up on some sleep.

If you would like to nominate yourself as your local communication lead please contact me at

Alternatively please email me if you can help... 9 across ‘Worried a new team's endlessly lousy (7) ’