This last year has continued to be challenging for many of us, but the easing of Government restrictions has meant that people we support have been able to start to reconnect with their local communities, friends and families.
Many of our day opportunities have been able to reopen and our award winning Connect & Do team have been doing more than ever; our 2021 Big Connect was held live at the Portico Gallery and included a new and exciting collaboration with the Young Vic.
We have continued to strengthen our position as London’s leading adult social care provider for people living with learning disabilities, autism, mental health support needs. In the last year we have worked with local authorities and housing providers to increase housing and support options for people; including in Richmond where we are supporting young people to live on their own, in Croydon where we are using an innovative solution to reduce pressure on hospital beds for people experiencing mental ill health, and in Camden where people with autism and other learning disabilities moved into a beautifully refurbished new building.
It was with great sadness that we announced the sudden death of Eleri Ebenezer, Chair of the Certitude Board, who passed away in August. Eleri’s commitment and dedication to Certitude and her knowledge of the social care sector has been invaluable to all of us and has significantly contributed to Certitude’s success. Working with Eleri over the past 11 years has been a privilege and her love for and commitment to Certitude has been inspiring to witness.
As always, we are incredibly grateful to all colleagues, volunteers, supporters and Board members for their ongoing commitment and determination to ensure that, even in the most difficult of times, people live the life they want!
Acting Chair of the Certitude Board
An incredible year
We created this short film to celebrate the many ways people have adapted to the challenges presented by COVID-19.
From the creativity of our Connect & Do team, to the resilience of our Support a Skill programme and the inclusivity of the Big Think, this whistle-stop tour of the last year shines a light on the achievements of a memorable year.
This video diary is narrated by two Certitude stars – John and Faisal. John sums up this difficult year perfectly when he sums up with the words, “Even though it’s been a tough year, we still achieved incredible things!”
people were supported by Certitude during the past year
of our services are rated Good/Outstanding by the CQC as at September 2021
elearning and workshop sessions completed by staff
learning disability awareness sessions were delivered by Treat Me Right!
We are loving
We are proud to lead from our hearts and to work with love, affection, care and respect.
Supporting people and families
While the ARC remained closed for most of last year due to COVID-19, Deputy Manager, Wendy Bayoumi, dispensed hours of advice and support to families over the phone. She says:
Every year we celebrate Certitude teams and individuals who go ‘above and beyond’ at our annual Michael Rosen Awards.
We are London
Now more than ever we are proud to live and work in London. The capital’s energy, diversity, tenacity and openness are reflected in everything we do. London is in our DNA
Supporting more Londoners
Despite the challenges of the pandemic, we were thrilled to be able to start supporting a number of new people and welcome their support teams into Certitude.
Striving for more diversity and inclusion
We continue to work hard to be an inclusive organisation. Caroline Fraser, who joined Certitude in spring 2021 as Director of People and Organisational Development, says:
We are unconventional
We find strength in doing things differently, and this means we can adapt quickly and creatively. We will not be hindered by convention; if it works for people, we do it.
Unstoppable Treat Me Right! team go digital
The Treat Me Right! team use their lived experience of learning disabilities and/or autism to train others to understand people’s rights to reasonable adjustments.
Recruiting Support Workers from all walks of life
To ensure we find the most enthusiastic, creative and compassionate support staff, our recruitment team are constantly innovating.
We are brave
We have shown ourselves to be resilient. We aren’t afraid to lead, to challenge the status quo and to stand up for what’s right. Not what’s right for the system, but what’s right for the person.
Making the most of lockdown
The lockdown was long and challenging for many of the people we support, particularly with most activities, work and volunteering cancelled, shops and cafes shut and no visits from friends and family.
Working through COVID-19
We are so grateful to our all our colleagues who have done everything they can to ensure people are supported and able to stay well.
For the year ending 31 March 2021 total income was £52.291m (including £2.352m Yarrow asset transfers) with a surplus of £3.655k (£1.303m if the Yarrow asset transfer is excluded) before investment gains of £746k and actuarial pension losses of £3,627k. This is a positive position considering the impact of additional costs incurred due to COVID-19, together with the continuing challenging social care environment where there is a continued drive to reduce costs.
Total expenditure was £48.636m, with employment costs representing 79% of our income, considerable efforts were made during the year to ensure we manage all our employment costs as effectively as possible, as well as managing COVID-19 costs. With continued pressure of increasing costs, effective resource management remain a key priority.