1. CARERS ASSOCIATION
(A company limited by guarantee)
2. Report and Financial Statements
For the Year Ended 31 March 2009
Charity Number 1086979
Company Number 4184030
CARERS ASSOCIATION SOUTHERN STAFFORDSHIRE
(A company limited by guarantee)
Legal and Administrative Information
Report of the Executive Committee
Notes to the accounts
3. CARERS ASSOCIATION SOUTHERN STAFFORDSHIRE
Report of the Executive Committee for the year ended 31 March 2009
The Executive Committee presents its report and audited financial
statements for the year ended 31 March 2009.
Reference and Administrative Information:
Charity Name: Carers Association Southern Staffordshire
Charity registration number: 1086979
Company registration number: 4184030
Registered office and The Carers Centre
operational address: Austin Friars
Stafford ST17 4AP
Mr K Parson Chair
Mrs H Dart Vice-Chair
Mr P Gloyne Treasurer
Miss S Jackson
Mrs R Vakis Resigned 09.10.08
Mrs J Massey until January 2009
Mrs I Davies
Mr G Ravenscroft
Mrs P Harvey
Mrs C Howlett
Mr P Edgerton Elected 09.10.08
Mrs G Wyatt
Senior Management Team:
Mrs G Wyatt Chief Officer
Mrs L Cock Adult Carers Support Team Manager
Ms M Rollins Young Carers Support Team Manager
Mrs S Hall Office and Accounts Manager
Mrs C Boden Carers Learning and Leisure Project
Auditors; Silver and Co 25 Park Road, Cannock, WS11 1JN
Bankers: Unity Trust Bank Nine Brindleyplace, Birmingham B1 2HB
4. Solicitors: Nowell Mellor 7 & 8 St Mary’s Road, Stafford, ST16
5. STRUCTURE, GOVERNANCE AND MANAGEMENT
The organisation is a charitable company limited by guarantee,
incorporated on 21st March 2001 and registered as a charity on 11th June
2001. The company was established under a Memorandum of
Association which established the objects and powers of the charitable
company and is governed under its Articles of Association. In the event
of the company being wound up members are required to contribute an
amount not exceeding £1.
Recruitment and Appointment of the Executive Committee
The directors of the company are also charity trustees for the purposes
of charity law and under the company’s articles are known as
members of the Executive Committee. Under the requirements of the
Memorandum and Articles of Association the members of the Executive
Committee are elected to serve for a period of three years after which
they must be re-elected at the next Annual General Meeting.
As a charity working solely with carers, the Executive Committee seeks
to ensure that the needs of this group are appropriately represented
through the diversity of the trustee body.
Trustee Induction and Training
All individuals who are interested in serving on the Executive Committee
are encouraged to be co-opted to the Committee for up to a year prior
to election to ensure that they have the skills that are required and that
they understand fully the role and responsibilities of being trustees.
During this period they are invited and encouraged to attend training
sessions, offered by local CVS’, on the roles and responsibilities of
Trustees and other training relevant to their anticipated role on the
Executive Committee (e.g. SORP 2005, Health and Safety training) In
some cases the ‘shadowing’ of a more experienced Trustee is
appropriate. Additionally they meet with the Chief Officer who provides
them with a Trustee induction pack .
All risks are kept under review by the Executive Committee who have
considered and identified these with respect to the operation of the
business as follows:
Risks to Service Delivery
Whilst referrals for carers continue to increase, so do requests for
CASS involvement in a wide range of boards, working groups etc. and
care must be taken that this, whilst being positive in raising the profile
6. of carers and the organisation, does not have a negative impact on the
services to carers. It has not been possible, over the past year, to put
into place the planned organisational restructure. This was due to the
continuity atmosphere of uncertainty caused by the extension of the
main funding contract for 12 months, whilst the commissioners
identified their commissioning intentions. Regrettably no action was
forthcoming and a second 121 month contract was issued from
01.04.09. Despite this, the service has been maintained and developed.
Risks around Health and Safety
Procedures are in place to ensure compliance with health and safety of
staff, volunteers, clients and visitors to the Carers Centre and also
when out on home visits etc.
The organisation holds regular Finance Sub-Committee meetings.
Every effort is made to identify funding from a broader group of
agencies to minimise the risks associated with reliance on one main
source, however over the past 12 months this has been difficult due to
the downturn in the economy and the subsequent effect on funders.
CASS has a policy of limits of signing powers with respect to cheques.
The organisation has a policy on the level of its reserves (see later in
Risks to Service Quality
The adoption and periodic reviews of PQASSO (Practical Quality
Assurance Systems for Small Organisations) ensures a constant quality
of delivery for all operational aspects of the charity. The organisation
was working on Level 3 PQASSO Edition 2 but has now been
concentrating on Edition 3, which can be externally assessed.
Its Investors in People status was reviewed and renewed in April 08.
CASS has an Executive of between 9 and 15 members) that meet every
two months and is responsible for the strategic direction and policy of
the charity. The Company Secretary also sits on the Committee but has
no voting rights. Three sub-committees – Employment and Finance
that meet on a bi-monthly basis and Health & Safety, meeting on an ad
hoc basis – report to the main Executive.
The day to day responsibility for the provision of services rests with the
Chief Officer, with certain responsibilities delegated to the Assistant
Chief Officer – Adult Services, Office and Accounts Manager, Young
Carers Team Manager and Learning and Leisure Project Co-ordinator.
The Chief Officer is responsible for ensuring that the charity delivers the
services specified; that monitoring requirements and key performance
indicators are met; and has line management responsibility for eight
7. staff. The Office and Accounts Manager has responsibility for the day
to day financial and administrative functions. The Adult Carers and
Young Carers Support Team Managers and the Learning and Leisure
Project Co-ordinator have responsibility for day to day service provision,
supervision and line management of their respective teams and for
ensuring that the team members continue to develop their skills and
working procedures in line with good practice.
The charity is guided by local and national policy complementary to the
charity’s objects and by the identified needs of carers within its
catchment area. The organisation’s business plan, which is regularly
reviewed and rewritten in 2008, reflects these priorities. Services are
commissioned by Staffordshire County Council and the PCT and the
organisation is represented on a range of multi-agency partnership
boards and local forums which results in improved links and
relationships with both statutory and voluntary sector agencies.
OBJECTIVES AND ACTIVITIES
The company’s objects and principal activities are to:
• provide advice, information and emotional support for carers
• seek to reduce the stress experienced by carers through the
provision of a range of opportunities designed to maintain good
emotional and physical well-being
• representation of carers’ views
• raise awareness of carers and their needs
The main objectives and activities for the year continued to focus on the
provision of one-to-one support to individual carers; representation of
their needs to service commissioners and providers; and the provision
of opportunities for carers to maintain their own health. To achieve
these, a range of services was provided both by the organisation alone
and in partnership with other agencies.
ACHIEVEMENTS AND PERFORMANCE
Advice, Information and Emotional Support
This has been provided to adult carers through the Outreach Workers,
Carers Support Worker, the Post Diagnosis Support Service (P.D.S.S.),
the Mental Health Carers Workers and the Dementia Support Worker,
through one-to-one work and monthly drop-in sessions. A similar
service has been provided to young carers (under 18) by the Young
Carers Support Team. In the latter part of 2008 funding was accessed
for the continuation of the P.D.S.S. and a new staff member was
576 adult carers and 191 young carers were referred to the
organisation during the 12 months ending 31 March 09, resulting in a
total of 3,932 adult carers and 437 young carers being supported to
varying levels as at that date. This steady increase in the number of
referrals, together with increasing complexity of cases and the ongoing
support necessary for established clients as their situations change or
deteriorate, has resulted in waiting lists. Priority has to be given to
those in immediate need of support but this of course may have meant
that those in less need at the time became more critical as time went
on. Yet again the waiting lists have been kept to a minimum thanks to
the dedication of staff but there is still a real danger that the quality of
the service will be compromised in an effort to keep up with referrals.
All staff are trained in counselling skills and are able to recognise when
it is necessary to refer a carer on for more specialist support. The
exception is the P.D.S.S. which provides a counselling service for
carers and those they care for.
Monthly drop-ins were held in seven venues around southern
Staffordshire and these have been very successful in providing carers
not only with information and advice but also the opportunity for
emotional support from CASS staff and other carers.
The Young Carers Project has successfully provided one-to-one
support sessions to young carers throughout the year, in addition to
running a successful Buddy-Up scheme and monthly meeting zones
(clubs) in six areas. Specific information and guidance has been
delivered on a variety of subjects but this year particular emphasis was
placed on the dissemination of information and guidance regarding
internet safety, self injurious behaviour and sexual health.
A great deal of information has been provided through the website
including answering queries from people across the country and
signposting them on to local sources of support. The hits on the site
have increased and during the year totaled 883,762. Feedback through
the site has been very positive.
Four editions of the CASS newsletter, Aspects, were produced, with a
circulation of around 5,500 for each edition. On registering with CASS,
adult carers receive an information pack and, if appropriate, a mental
health carers pack. A range of age-appropriate leaflets for young
carers is also provided, together with a Young Carers Power Pack. The
profile of carers, together with that of the service we can provide, has
been raised through talks, display stands etc. in a variety of settings
and to a cross section of agencies.
9. It is considered that the organisation has been able to maintain the
service provision to the standard expected through the dedication and
flexibility of the staff but this commitment should not be relied upon or
taken for granted.
Reduction of Carer Stress and the Promotion of Good Physical and Emotional Wellbeing
Over the year, the Carers Learning and Leisure Project (L&LP) has
provided an increased and broadened range of opportunities for carers
all aimed at promoting wellbeing. The monthly drop ins, in seven
locations, have been well attended and provided an opportunity to
relax, chat, access information and advice, participate in ‘taster’
sessions for new activities, listen to speakers of interest and a chance
to meet with other carers and share coping strategies.
Additionally, a range of activities has been provided across the area,
including – Reiki training, complementary therapies, various arts and
craft workshops, assertiveness skills, food and mood, IT skills, first aid
and creative writing. During this year a total of 1512 episodes (courses
and drop-in sessions) were provided by the L&LP during the year.
The Carers Breaks scheme, funded through the Carers Grant,
continued to make grants to qualifying carers of up to £200 a year to
provide a flexible break/s. The scheme, which is managed for the
county by CASS, is very successful and the feedback very positive.
However this means it is oversubscribed. During this year it has only
been possible to give grants to those who have not had one previously.
334 carers benefited from a break during the 12 months ending 31
72 Young Carer Meeting Zones were held during the year providing 918
meaningful sessions, together with 41 outings offering a range of
activities to 408 young carers during the school holidays. These enable
children to have a break from caring in the company of others who
understand their situation; to build confidence and social skills; develop
pro-social identities; and to maintain their own good emotional
wellbeing and resilience. A total of 3,999 episodes of support (one-to-
one and in groups) were provided to young carers in this period.
Volunteers are recruited to provide additional support to carers through
regular telephone calls or home visits, which help to reduce the
isolation and stress experienced by many carers. Other volunteers will
provide transport, help at the Alzheimer Cafes or drop-ins, undertake
some gardening or possibly sit with the cared-for person to give the
carer a break.
Carer Representation / Participation
10. Representation is made, on behalf of individual carers and with their
permission, to statutory agencies in respect of services, their rights and
other relevant issues to try to ensure that they and those they care for
receive the services they need to maintain the caring situation.
CASS also represents the wider issues concerning carers on a range of
local and countywide partnership boards, sub groups, forums and local
development groups. This also serves to remind service
commissioners and providers what life is actually like for carers.
Because of changes to the structure of the County Councils Social Care
and Health Directorate and the implementation of the Local Area
Agreement at district level, the number of meetings where carers views
are needed has increased considerably.
The contract to support the carers forums of the Learning Disability
Partnership Board was extended for a further 12 months until March
2010. Additionally contract was awarded for the administration of
Mental Health Local Development Groups
The increase in meetings has placed additional demands on the
organisation which will need to be addressed in the longer term to
ensure it doesn’t have a negative effect on the one-to-one services.
CASS Young Carers Rep Group held three working meetings to set the
agenda for the year and to work through it. They were actively involved
in lobbying for the ‘Carers Question’ to be included in the 2011
Census, met with Lichfield Health Scrutiny Committee and attended two
CASS recruitment interview panels.
Raising awareness of carers’ needs
In addition to raising and maintaining awareness of carers’ needs at
the range of strategic boards mentioned previously, a number of
talks/presentations were given over the period to social care, health
and voluntary agencies. These also promoted referrals to CASS.
Displays were mounted at a number of events run by other agencies for
the same purpose, including six events during Carers Week 2008 which
was co-ordinated by Social Care and Health.
The profile of young carers, together with that of the service we can
provide, was raised through talks, schools resource packs, displays etc
in a variety of settings and with a cross section of agencies/interested
11. Six monthly Alzheimers Cafes were run during the year and have been
very successful in both maintaining attendance and encouraging new
The South Staffs Dementia Support worker successfully developed the
role within the South Staffs District and by the end of March 2009 had
taken 116 referrals for the service. The project is being evaluated in the
summer of 2009 to ensure its continuation.
Funding was received in November 2008 from Mid Staffs Hospital
Foundation Trust for a 12 month pilot Carers Link project within Stafford
Hospital, to identify and support carers of patients admitted to the
hospital, to raise awareness of carers needs on the wards and in the
various departments and to identify staff who are carers and support
them appropriately. 60 carers were identified in the period December
08 to March 2009.
Amended to here
Level 3 of PQASSO was close to being achieved by the end of 07/08
and our Investors in People Award was reviewed and retained at the
end of the year.
Although a considerable Investment had been made in updating and
improving the IT network within the Carers Centre, total IT networking
across the organisation was not achieved during the year. Tenders for
a new web-based database were submitted and a provider identified.
The database will be up and running in the summer of 2008.
It has not been possible to achieve some of the future aims set out in
Annual Report during the last year. In some cases priorities have
changed over the 12
months as other more urgent needs have needed to be addressed.
The continuing changes within Social Care and Health meant that they
weren’t in a position by the end of December 07 to decide what they
wanted to commission for carers. Therefore, rather than being able to
negotiate a new contract to ensure the financial viability of the
organisation for 3 to 5 years beyond March 2008 or to fund any new
initiatives, we had to accept a rolled-over contract 12 months whilst
their new structures bedded-in.
FINANCIAL REPORT 2008/9
As a result of continued support from its principal funding sources, the
charity received a net increase of funds compared with the previous
12. year of just over £45,000 with overall turnover reaching £900,000.
Funding for the Young Carers project increased by £28,000 and there
was new funding of £5,800 from South Staffs PCT for administering the
Local Development Groups and £5,000 from Mid-Staffs NHS Foundation
Trust for a Carers Worker to be located at Stafford Hospital. After
having been suspended through lack of confirmed continuation funding
in November 2007, the Post Diagnosis Support Service received
additional funding and started up again in November 2008. Other
income in the form of donations was received from local charitable
organisations and from individuals. Expenditure for the year was
£929,000 (2007/8 £816,000). The biggest area of increase was
staffing costs, following a comprehensive job evaluation and regrading
exercise. There was an overall deficit of £28,280 for the year.
Principal Funding Sources
The principal funding sources for the organisation continued to be
contract income and grants from Staffordshire County Council and from
the PCT and district council in southern Staffordshire. Contracts are in
place or have been extended that will secure continued funding for all
activities until the end of March 2010, with the majority being extended
until September of the same year. Every effort is made to identify
funding from a broad group of agencies to minimise the risks
associated with reliance on one main source.
Aside from retaining a prudent amount in reserves each year almost all
of the charity’s funds are to be spent in the short term so there are no
funds available for long term investment. However, charges for the
organisation’s services are invoiced in advance, which produces a
positive bank balance. This balance is held in a combination of an
interest-bearing current account and a higher-interest deposit account
which, in the 2008/9 financial year, generated interest receivable of
approx. £11,700. However, interest rates fell considerably during the
year as a result of the economic downturn and the interest received
was lower than the previous year (£16,380). Unfortunately, this trend
will continue. Nevertheless, the Executive Committee has decided to
continue with the policy of holding reserves in these bank accounts for
the foreseeable future.
The Executive Committee has examined the charity's requirements for
reserves in light of the main risks to the organisation. It has established
a policy whereby the reserves held by the charity should be sufficient to
maintain security of operation of the organisation for at least three
months. Despite the 2008/9 deficit, overall reserves after taking
designated improvement funds into account were approx. £259,000 at
13. the end of the financial year, which provides a level of cover of 3.4
PLANS FOR THE FUTURE
The priority is to maintain the current level of service provision and to
strive to maintain the quality, not becoming complacent because of the
many positive comments received. Priorities for 2008/09 include –
• Ensuring continuation funding of the main contract post March
2009 and identify ways of diversify and increase the organisations
 Writing and utilising a marketing strategy
 Researching the needs of those carers aged 18 to 25
 Undergoing an external independent organisational review
 Achieving PQASSO level 3
 Improving healthcare support to carers
 Working with local employers to improve support for working
 Establishing a CASS Advisory Board to ensure carers have a say in
the development of CASS services
 Identifying carers who would like to be involved with consultation
and to represent carers views
A new 5-year business plan will be written to take effect from 2008 but
the priority for 2008/2009 will be to ensure that funding is negotiated to
continue the service from April 2009. As previously stated, the
contracts for the majority of CASS’ income came to an end on 31
March 2008 but were rolled over for 12 months. It is essential that this
is addressed early enough to prevent the loss of good staff due to
uncertainty about the future. However, we are dependant on funders
identifying the level of their expected income before being able to
negotiate for the future.
RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
The Executive Committee complies with Company law which requires
them to prepare financial statements for each financial year which give
a true and fair view of the state of affairs of the charitable company as
at the balance sheet date and of its incoming resources and application
of resources, including income and expenditure for the financial year. In
preparing those financial statements, the Executive Committee should
follow best practice and:
 select suitable accounting policies and then apply them
14.  make judgments and estimates that are reasonable and prudent;
 prepare the financial statements on the ongoing concern basis
unless it is inappropriate to assume that the company will continue
on that basis.
The Executive Committee is responsible for maintaining proper
accounting records which disclose with reasonable accuracy at any
time the financial position of the charitable company and to enable them
to ensure that the financial statements comply with the Charities Act
1985. The Executive Committee is also responsible for safeguarding
the assets of the charitable company and hence for taking reasonable
steps for the prevention and detection of fraud and other irregularities.
Members of the Executive Committee
Members of the Executive Committee, who are directors for the
purpose of company law and trustees for the purpose of charity law,
who served during the year and up to the date of this report are set out
on page 3.
In accordance with company law, as the company’s directors, we
 so far as we are aware, there is no relevant audit information of
which the company’s auditors are unaware; and
 as the directors of the company we have taken all the steps that
we ought to have taken in order to make ourselves aware of any
relevant audit information and to establish that the charity’s
auditors are aware of that information.
Silver and Co were re-appointed as the charitable company’s auditors
during the year.
This report has been prepared in accordance with the Statement of
Recommended Practice: Accounting and Reporting by Charities (SORP
2005, issued March 2005) and in accordance with the special
provisions of Part VII of the Companies Act 1985 relating to small
Approved by the Executive Committee on 2nd September 2008 and
signed on its behalf by:
15. Mr K Parson Mr P Gloyne
16. Financial Statements for the
Year ended 31 March 2008