Dear all,

We had a productive year in 2018 here at Harrow Mencap, striving to make a difference to people’s lives locally in Harrow, Hillingdon and surrounding areas.

Our Connecting Communities programme working with faith groups, supermarkets, banks, institutions and individuals from diverse backgrounds continues to provide opportunities for people to engage and volunteer in many activities locally.

The programme is growing to meet local needs with more events throughout the year. The programme was recognised in the 2018 Mayoral Awards, as runner up in the Engaging Communities category. Our campaigns with families and individuals have also brought positive changes resulting in opportunities to influence the development of services and the decisions that affect their lives, especially at a time of cuts. Working with the Local Authority and CCG a Learning Disability Focus Group has been established and will report directly to the Harrow Health and Wellbeing Board.

The group is co-chaired by a carer/parent. This is ensuring people with a learning disability and their families’ needs have a higher profile and that we can continue to shape the agenda moving forward. Our campaigning work was also recognised in The National Democracy Week

Awards when we came runner up for giving people with learning disabilities a stronger voice in the political process. Our Advocacy services are growing in reputation and positive outcomes for individuals. We proudly won three new service contracts last year and are already exceeding targets.

The care and support services, care agency, children’s services including day opportunities have continued to expand and now offer a wider range of opportunities to families. Our supported breaks have increased significantly in response to families and individuals’ needs.

As always, we try to do more with less, but continue to progress with our creative and resilient staff and volunteers. Last year had many highlights, and for me, the one that gives me that extra special feeling was seeing the joy of our young people actively and fully participating as part of a float, strutting their ‘stuff’ at the Notting Hill Carnival.

We are continuing to improve lives and are excited about taking this forward into 2019. Wishing you a very happy and successful New Year,

Deven Pillay,

CEO Harrow Mencap