Minutes of the Annual General Meeting of the Lawrence Home Nursing Team
Held on Monday 3rd July 2017
- Welcome by the Chairman Jonathan Moore
Danny Phillips, Dr. Nicholas Dewey, Jane Evans, Gail Ambrose, Katrina Brown, Mary Parker, Julia Ayres, Carol Smallshaw, Sarah Bryson, Alison Nicholls, Jenny Cook, Jenny Gregory, Angela Barnes.
- To receive the Minutes of the AGM of May 2016
Jonathan Moore signed the Minutes as an accurate record of the meeting.
- To receive and adopt the Annual Report, Jonathan Moore (Chairman)
‘I would like to warmly welcome you all to this evenings meeting. After several years of addressing nursing and clinical management the past 12 months have seen important developments in the financial administration and management of the charity. This has proven necessary, both for the increasing work that we are doing, but also to further future proof the Lawrence Home Nursing Team to ensure that we can optimise our service going forward. We continue to run the charity through our 3 different teams; Fundraising, Clinical and Financial.
Verity Fifer has continued the development of the fundraising coordinator’s role this year, with the creation of many new and exciting events. She has also, very importantly, managed to get the commitment that many of these are set to become annual events. This is very helpful both for securing a predictable income, but also for raising our profile and the opportunity to develop these events over the years. So, events like “Lunch for Lawrence” and the inaugural and successful clay pigeon shoot event will now, hopefully, continue and evolve in the years to come.
Through the fantastic contacts of our ambassador Graeme Garden, we have managed to arrange some wonderful events in the past year; including the unforgettable comedy night at Ditchley last summer, and the very enjoyable “Call my Bluff” wine tasting in Enstone. We greatly appreciate this support which has enabled us to put on such original and exciting events; a big thank you to all those who have given their time so generously. As always, we are so grateful to the many people who support us in so many different ways, both in contributing to the events and fundraising but also so many other acts of generosity.
This year we have seen changes in the way we run the finances of the charity. I think it is very important to explain these to you so that our position is very clear. We now have annual commitments which run to over £100,000 a year, so we need to have a steady and reliable recurring income stream. For a small local charity, raising this sum annually on fundraising alone would be neither safe or sustainable and we could not be certain to fulfil our obligations.
However, over the past 18 years, due to the combination of prudent budgeting, good investing and the amazing generosity of our supporters, we have gradually accumulated a financial reserve with which we can generate around half of the required annual income. We are very fortunate that these funds have been very well managed by both past and present financial teams, who have ensured that we are in a strong financial position. This generates around half the necessary income for the year and gives us a predictable income. However, with increasing patient numbers, overall financial costs and increasingly expensive and necessary administrative obligations the need for annual fundraising to raise the other half, remains vital to our overall success and long-term future. Therefore, the maintenance and indeed the growth of our investment reserve is critical in ensuring our income; indeed, any diminution would put extra pressure on the fundraising. This emphasises just how central the fundraising is to the charity, particularly at a time of increasing costs and clinical demand.
In January, our treasurer Les Waller decided to step down. Les has made such a tremendous contribution to the Lawrence Home Nursing Team and has been a great support to every aspect of the charity’s work. Les had the perfect background to complement our mission; having worked for Tear Fund in Bangladesh for many years then returning to the UK to work within the Primary Health Care health sector, including as the practice manager at West Street Surgery in Chipping Norton and Broadshires Surgery in Carterton. He was also involved in fundholding and GP commissioning. Les had a very deep knowledge of the health sector and in managing health services. He had an amazing eye for detail in managing a budget; his bookkeeping and accountancy skills were meticulous. He was also a tremendous support through his knowledge of nurse employment and working practices. He joined the LHNT in 2014 at a difficult time and his wholehearted support in transforming the finance group and getting us to where we are today, has been fundamental to our success. I will personally always be extremely grateful for the incredible amount he has achieved for the Lawrence Home Nursing Team. I would like to add publicly my thanks to him; which I have expressed to him and Di privately.
In recent months Louise Blackler from Astral Accountancy in Chipping Norton has been an invaluable help in supporting the setting up of our new financial and accounting systems. This has been a huge and very time-consuming task. From the very start Louise has been unfailingly kind, patient and incredibly generous with her time and expertise. It has been a huge reassurance and support to both the nursing managers and the remaining finance team to have her support and encouragement during this difficult transition. Although Astral Accountancy will be officially managing our book keeping and accounting going forward, I would like to publicly acknowledge our most sincere thanks for all their incredible generosity and support in getting these new systems set up for the future.
The nursing of the patients under our care remains at the centre of our vocation and I am so immensely proud again this year of everything we have achieved. I believe that the changes made to the nursing structure are working very well and that we now have a long term and sustainable working system particularly for our nursing co-ordinators, which makes the job fair and attractive in the long term. This is vital because nursing recruitment remains an extremely difficult challenge and the LHNT realistically needs to compete for the best nurses. That said, I remain very encouraged and inspired when I have the privilege to be involved with nurse interviews and meet the new nurses who continue to want to put themselves forward to work with us.
We had another CQC inspection in the last year and were judged “good” in all areas, this is a great achievement by both our clinical and administrative staff and involves a tremendous amount of extra work. Thanks to everyone who achieved this.
The other great joy on the clinical side is to read and share the steady stream of “thank you” letters that we receive from grateful families and carers. The sentence “words are just not enough to express our thanks and gratitude for the care we have received from the Lawrence Home Nursing Team” seem to recur repeatedly. I have heard our nursing managers say that the standard that we aspire to is to give the care that any nurse would wish to give to their own family; this is something I am so proud of and a standard we achieve.
It is both a great sadness but also a great privilege to be in a position to look after one of our own team. Ted and Monica Deakin have been amongst our most energetic and enthusiastic supporters; and a couple whose endeavours we have gratefully acknowledged over the years. In early February, I spent an afternoon with them both and remember thinking how well and healthy my former patient Ted seemed to be. It therefore came as a huge shock for all of us when he recently suddenly developed jaundice and was admitted to the Horton Hospital. Very quickly it became apparent that he would need terminal care and it was wonderful that the LHNT could offer Monica and Ted our services. Monica tells me that his symptoms were very well controlled and the morning he died Ted knew that Katrina was coming to visit him. Monica said that he held on to say goodbye to her; and when he had done this, he was finally ready to slip peacefully away. We are hugely indebted to people like Monica and Ted, who are the cornerstone of an organisation like the Lawrence Home Nursing Team.
Finally, one of the other great moments of the year was the incredibly successful Alison Moyet concert at Merriscourt, near Sarsden in October. Perhaps even more remarkable was a Californian fan named Stephen Navadel who noticed on the Alison Moyet website that she was doing this concert at Sarsden and decided that he was going to attend. Without really knowing anything or anyone, he boarded a plane to London and managed to find his way to Sarsden to attend the concert!! I cannot imagine what it was like to travel from the United States into the complete unknown. When he arrived, he engaged completely with Verity and all involved with the concert, and his determination to attend was a great inspiration to everyone involved in organising this event. Subsequently it was a great joy to get to know him and show him the beauty of the surrounding Cotswolds. We have remained in touch by email since. Earlier this year Stephen was involved with the terminal care of a very dear friend of his in her mid-90s and was encouraged by his experience of the LHNT. He really appreciated his insight into community based palliative care.
So again, the influence of a small, Cotswold based charity has extended far beyond the narrow boundaries of our geographical area; engaging and touching the lives of those well beyond the patients, families and carers that we serve. It is a tremendous privilege to be involved in the journey of people at the very end of their lives; and an incredible inspiration to those of us fortunate enough to be involved. ‘
- To receive and adopt the independently reviewed accounts, Tony Yarrow (Treasurer)
The accounts were circulated at the meeting and will be available on the website. Tony Yarrow explained that there are five key sources of income: the NHS grant of £15,000 (this has remained the same since 2011 / 12 and Trustees are keen that this should be increased); the generosity of the people of the Chipping Norton area; fundraising income; collection boxes (grateful thanks to Moncia and Ted Deakin for all their work on these) and investment income.
Expenses have risen in the last 2 / 3 years as the area covered by the team has expanded to include Bloxham; Chipping Norton and the surrounding villages have also grown. The LHNT employs good professionals in all areas, including fundraising and administration, so costs have risen. Despite this, for the 18th consecutive year the income of the LHNT exceeds its expenditure.
- To consider the Budget for the year 2017 - 2018
The budget was set at £207,000 for the year 2017 – 2018.
- To nominate an independent reviewer for the year 2017 - 2018
Astral LBH was nominated and approved as the independent reviewer for 2017 – 2018.
- To receive a verbal report from the Nursing Manager, Jenny Nolan
‘The amount of care the team are called upon to provide increases year on year. Over the last financial year we have cared for 68 patients providing over 2,500 hours of care.
We are invited into people’s homes at the most difficult of times. It is always a privilege to be asked to help. We have a very experienced team of Registered Nurses and have employed two new nurses this year. The nurses are very dedicated to the care that we give and often go above and beyond the call of duty. This is echoed in the letters of appreciation we receive. In October last year we were able to employ Gail Ambrose to join Katrina and I in the day to day running of the team. Gail’s employment has enabled me to have some much needed management time. In September 2016 we had an inspection by the Care Quality Commission and were rated as ‘good’ in all areas. The report is available to read on the CQC website and there is a link to it from our website.
We couldn’t provide the service we do without the support of the District Nurses, GPs, clinical nurse specialists from Katharine House Hospice and the wider community team . We thank them for their continued support. It is thanks to the amazing hard work and support of so many people that Lawrence Home Nursing Team is the success it is today. Thank you to you all.’
- To receive a verbal report from the Fund Raising Co-ordinator, Verity Fifer
Verity Fifer reported on a busy year which included several new initiatives such as the clay pigeon shoot and the cricket match; it is hoped that these will become annual events. ‘Laugh for Lawrence’ will take place at the Theatre, Chipping Norton on 15th September; tickets can be purchased from the theatre box office. Verity Fifer thanked Graham Garden for all his efforts on behalf of the term in his role as LHNT Ambassador; without him the Alison Moyet concert and the Call My Wine Bluff evenings would not have been possible. The website and Facebook page are updated regularly; Alice Burns has kindly agreed to help in writing a newsletter which will be circulated to all on the mailing list. Verity Fifer thanked all the members of the support group for their attendance at meetings, help at events and cake baking! Special thanks were extended to Monica and Ted Deakin.
- To approve the appointment of officers for the following year:
- Chairman – Dr Jonathan Moore. Nominated: Tony Yarrow. Seconded: Anna Jo Lawrence
- Treasurer – Tony Yarrow. Nominated: Jonathan Moore. Seconded: Alison Haine.
iii. Secretary – Anna Jo Lawrence. Nominated Jonathan Moore. Seconded: Annette Lawrence.
- Date of next AGM
Tuesday 22nd May, 2018