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Annual plan

Below is a summary of Leicestershire Cares' annual plan for 2021-22. You can read the full plan here.

Leicestershire Cares is a vibrant, creative; result orientated award-winning charity that has been operating successfully across Leicester city, Leicestershire and Rutland (LLR) since 2003. Throughout the pandemic, lockdown and the transition out of lockdown we have proved we are a creative, agile and resilient organisation that can deliver change through our joined up approach to work.

We continue to deliver impactful work in line with our vision, mission and values.

Moving on from the Covid19 pandemic

Covid 19 has had a significant impact on all our stakeholders. Our reflections on the impact and how we intend to respond moving forward were captured in our “Power to Change” paper.

Focus of our work

We will continue to broker partnerships between business, schools, community groups and local government so we are able to:

Children and Young People

We will seek to support young people we work with to cope and deal with the transition out of lockdown through a range of one to one and group interventions. These will increasingly be delivered “safe distance” face to face as well as remotely.

Develop and deliver targeted work with care experienced, NEET, homeless and ex offending young people aged 15 to 24. The emphasis of this work will be framed by our “Power to Change” approach and will:

  • Support the young people to deal with the many overlapping issues that hold them back in life such as inadequate housing, physical and mental wellbeing, financial management, dependency issues, dysfunctional and abusive relationships.
  • Support young people to understand, explore and enter education, employment and training.
  • Support community groups that support these young people.
  • Ensure young people’s “lived experience and voice” guides the development, delivery and evaluation of our work and feed into relevant local and national policy and practice debates.

Community development

Seek to build on our strong relationships with Local Authorities and community groups across LLR so our work is firmly anchored in local agendas. Our work will:

  • Proactively seek to build on the partnerships we have developed with African, Afro Caribbean, Asian and East European groups and seek to develop more ways to enable the business community to partner with them to share skills and knowledge.
  • Identify and facilitate practical ways the community and business sector can work together to strengthen community responses to poverty and exclusions.
  • Reflect on learning arising from our work and promote partnership working between business, community and local councils through a variety of formats.

Priorities

As we enter 21/22, we have identified the following priorities.

  1. Respond to challenges thrown up by the transition out of lockdown and any setbacks that may arise. This will be framed by our “Power to Change” approach and we anticipate our ability to be creative and agile will be key.
  2. Programme delivery. We deliver high quality, high impact, high profile programmes where all our work is planned and evaluated within a Results Based Management framework. We will ensure all internal and external donor targets, milestones, budget and reporting deadlines are met. This is the nuts and bolts of what we do. We will ensure we share our learning to relevant local, regional and national audiences.
  3. Income. We proactively seek sustainable income streams for our work which add value to our vision, mission and values. This will involve all our programme workers becoming more aware of the “funding ecosystem” for their work and being able to highlight opportunities that we might be able to pursue in order to continue and or develop/expand our work. This may well include developing partnerships and coalitions we can work with to deliver work and seek funding.
  4. Team work. We continue to work in a creative, agile and joined up manner and all staff are encouraged and supported to proactively participate in the development of our programmes and projects. Staff will be supported to develop their knowledge of and ability to partner with the diverse communities of our city and county.
  5. Membership. We will seek to work sensitively with members as they transition out of lockdown, offering a mix of remote and safe distance volunteering opportunities. We will also proactively seek to encourage and support members to work with team to develop new ideas and approaches to supporting the community and young people.
  6. Mainstreaming issues. Across all areas of our practice, we will seek to mainstream Diversity and Inclusion and working in an environmentally friendly way.

Conclusion

Covid19 has shone a cruel light on the many issues facing our city and county, but it has also shown that there is spirit and a willingness for people to work together. It might be a cliché, but our strongest asset is our people and we firmly believe that all our communities and young people, given support and opportunities, have much to offer to the recovery and development of our city and county. Rather than seeing them as victims or problems, we must see them as assets and solutions who can create rather than just consume ideas and policies.

We believe our power to change approach can inspire energy, vitality and creativity and, in doing so, turn despair into hope and create a better city and county for all.

#TogetherWeCan

Kieran Breen

May 2021