As I write this first message for Linking Lives, I’m only two weeks into my new role at Us in a Bus, but already it feels like I’ve been here forever. Thank you to all the team and Trustees for giving me such a wonderful welcome, and for planning such a great transition.
I have already found two things that inspire me on a daily basis. Firstly the fantastic team at Us in a Bus. I am amazed by the creativity and constant enthusiasm that surrounds me here in our new ‘hut’ at Redhill Aerodrome. I’ve never before worked with such committed and entertaining people. Secondly, the people that we support on a daily basis, with four teams out on the road criss-crossing Surrey to visit about 60 homes a week. Both the team and the people we support seem to specialise in change – trying things in different ways, finding delight in new challenges, seeking adaptions that work for them. But, the first thing I’ve noticed that doesn’t change is the challenges for funding care for the most vulnerable people in society, especially as funding comes from a diversity of sources.
But my real job in this edition of the newsletter is to wish Janet well as she departs in February for a long overdue sabbatical. Janet has been guiding Us in a Bus, delivering sessions for clients, running the teams, fighting funding battles and generally keeping the wheels on the bus for the last 25 years. All of us will miss her vast memory for names, faces, homes, clients, service users, staff and funny stories whilst she spends time with her husband Colin. But we are looking forward to welcoming her back as Director of Training in May where she will focus on delivering training, with courses planned for the rest of this year. We’ll be expanding our training offering, and also coaching and mentoring, so please do get in touch with the office if you’d like to find out more, or perhaps book a refresher course.
In the meantime, please join me in wishing Janet bon voyage for a few weeks. Let’s hope that the time away will allow her to firm up the chapter headings of the book I’m hoping she’s going to write on Intensive Interaction!
I’d also love to hear news and thoughts from the wider Us in a Bus family, so please do get in touch with any ideas or stories you might have.
Issue 1 2016 of Linking Lives, plus previous copies, can be found in the right-hand box on the News page