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Chairman’s blog

2nd June 2014

john bawden chair of governors

When you get asked “Why do you do that?” or  “What does it involve?”  I soon realised from my perspective what a great privilege it is to be the Chairman of St Richard’s Hospice.

As Chairman I am fortunate to be supported by devoted board of Governors who provide a great breadth of experience both medical and commercial.   This is essential when we have responsibility for an organisation with an annual budget of £7.5 million, employing 180 staff who, with 1200 volunteers, caring for patients and their families here in Worcestershire.

For many years I admired and believed in the work hospices do in providing much needed care for those with life threatening illnesses.  I was therefore both honoured and humbled to accept the role of Chairman of Governors at St Richard’s in 2007 having joined the Board in 2004.This meant I was fully aware of the wonderful all-encompassing care and support they provided

The main role of the Chairman is to ensure there is an effective Board who take responsibility for the management of the charity and developing the strategy.  As Chairman you are not responsible for the day to day running of the hospice, that being the role of the directors and staff.  It is the Board, led by the Chairman, who set the direction and standards, monitoring performance and ensuring compliance with the law and the Charity Commission and importantly acknowledging and embracing those who so generously support us and the work we do – the general public.

The role of Chairman is that of a custodian of a very precious organisation.  It is my duty along with the Board to ensure that St Richard’s is in a sound position and can face the future with confidence enabling it to continue to provide for those who need care and love at a critical time in their lives.

An important reason for accepting the role was that I believe in the inherent kindness of people and their support for each other, particularly in times of distress. St Richard’s is a collective, it is not mine, yours or theirs, it is ours – the people of Worcestershire.  This is demonstrated by the fact that we have a remarkable volunteer base and staff who are very committed.  We are extremely fortunate to be so generously and vitally supported by through donations and fundraising.

St Richard’s is a local charity for local people – indebted to all who support them.

This year sees us celebrating our 30th Anniversary.  I am just one who in those 30 years has held the mantle and guided St Richard’s to where it is today.

I am proud to Chair what is a truly wonderful organisation.

John Bawden