Annual General Meeting

Harbour Cancer Support held it’s Annual General Meeting on Tuesday 10th October.

Please see the Director’s report presented by Melanie Whitfield-Tinkler

Harbour Cancer Support has had another amazing year. This reports covers the year 1st April 2016 to 31st March 2017

Client numbers for the year were 1386 which is slightly up on the previous year. The biggest demand for our services continues to be the one to one work of counselling and befriending. With the art group and coffee mornings also continuing to flourish. The complementary therapies are slightly down, but this is due to us not having therapists available due to illness. We are continually on the lookout for new therapists. I must thank all the counsellors and therapists who have helped our clients for their ongoing professional services which they provide at no charge to the charity. Bill also deserves special recognition for his work running the art group, including the annual art exhibition and co-ordinating the production of the pictures for the calendar.

Fareham continues to be an asset to the charity, it continues to raise awareness of our services and has brought in a steady income over the past year with exceptional sales for both Christmas cards selling nearly £1200 and calendars just under £500 in the run up to Christmas. A huge thank you goes to all the volunteers who work there, we would not be able to benefit from this income without your dedication and commitment.

Fundraising as always is a massive part of our work, this year has seen a major change in how we propose to do this – unfortunately Rebecca did not work out in the role and so we now have a lady, Sharon working for us based in the Think office in Romsey, Ian is funding her to work 10 hours a week raising money for Harbour. This is primarily in the form of grant applications although she will also oversee the London Marathon. This is a win win scenario for the charity as we are saving the salary of a fundraiser and benefitting from the grants she is bringing in, a massive thank you to Ian for continuing to support the charity by employing Sharon within his company. We are still continuing to do our Summer Fayre, Christmas Fayre, Sultan Show, Alverstoke Michaelmas Fayre and Christmas raffle but stop doing smaller events, unless we have volunteers who are willing to take responsibility for them.

This seems an appropriate time to mention that Harbour Cancer Support has had its strongest financial year since the charity was established. A full financial report will follow. But in summary this is down to a number of reasons, some I have already mentioned but also the ongoing support from individuals and groups within the local community – we doubled our donations and legacy giving last year compared to the previous year, this support is essential in the ongoing survival of the charity. I also believe this is recognition for the fantastic work done by all involved with the organisation. Thank you to every single person who has supported us financially, every penny helps us make a difference to local people whose lives are touched by cancer.

Our volunteers are crucial to our day to day operation, we would not be able to operate without them, every single person is an integral part of the operation no matter how large or small their input. Thank you to each and every one for what they do – you keep the wheels rolling.

Our trustees are there to oversee the running of the charity and Hazel our Chairman and Cath our Vice-Chairman are very hands on within the organisation and are always on hand to offer support to the staff and volunteers. Ian does an excellent job overseeing our finances and guiding us in the right direction. Ellie is fundamental in keeping everything operating day to day. Thank you from all our clients for making sure the things behind the scenes that need to happen, happen so that Harbour Cancer is there for the longevity.

Personally this was not the easiest year, I unfortunately had 3 months out of the office and I wish to thank everyone for covering this period with so little impact on our clients – Ellie did an amazing job keeping everything going on a day to day basis helped by Ian, Hazel and Cath who also suddenly had twice as many counselling clients as well. It made me realise we may not be the biggest team but we certainly know how to pull together and all hands on deck when needed – a huge personal thank you from me.

Finally, I know there are big changes coming for the charity and very exciting times ahead – lets keep working together offering an amazing professional service to our clients who need us.