Introducing the Active Devon annual review 2018-19

Introducing Active Devon’s 2018-19 Annual Review

Matt Evans, Active Devon’s Chief Executive, introduces Active Devon’s 2018-19 Annual Review.

Anyone who knows Active Devon would describe 2018-19 as a year of great change, with its fair share of challenges!

So, when I sat down to reflect on the last year it was with many vivid memories and a real mix of emotions.

The main one of those emotions is huge pride. Pride in a Board that is demanding, critical, wise and supportive in the right measures at the right times, and in a staff team that is the best, most values driven group of colleagues it could be possible to lead.

That is the context in which I am pleased to introduce Active Devon’s 2018-19 Annual Review. We have followed the ‘less is more’ philosophy but in it you will get a real sense of the breadth of our work.

Continued Success in Core Delivery Programmes and Campaigns

Realigning the business to shifting external demands meant a more internal focus than the organisation is accustomed to. But despite the change, we have seen continued success in the delivery of core delivery programmes, such as Walking for Health, Satellite Clubs and School Games. Both in terms of overall numbers of people taking part and their reach to less active people.

Backed by improvements in our digital and communications capability, our campaign work has achieved tremendous growth in the Devon Girls Can and Big Devon March campaigns. And slowly but surely, we have put the building blocks in place to understand local communities and key audiences at a much more granular level.

It was a real fillip for the team that these achievements were independently verified with a ‘Very Good’ QUEST assessment.

Transformation Enabling Greater Impact

What makes these results all the more pleasing is that backdrop of extensive change against which they have been achieved.

The year started with a full team restructure. This was a painful and challenging time for everyone involved but it is testament to the professionalism, commitment and values of everyone in the team….Leavers, continuing colleagues and new joiners, and the patience and understanding or our partners locally. We were able to make the necessary changes and continue operational delivery with the minimum of disruption.

The most difficult outcome of the restructure was the loss through redundancy of highly capable and valued colleagues. Their continuing commitment in those most difficult of times was humbling and we sincerely hope that the new opportunities they have gone on to are fulfilling and exciting.

Across the team we have broadened our expertise and collective skill set. Every new team member has brought real diversity and value to the team whilst, at heart, the very same values that make Active Devon a very special organisation in which to be involved.

Our Future

So after looking back, what does the future hold?

I believe we have an even stronger team in place with the right strategy and really strong partnerships. Locally we have the means to inspire and support people and we are well positioned nationally to help shape and drive the future agenda.

That will be really important as the national policy/strategy agenda begins to move into its next four year cycle. I believe 2019-20 will see an even faster pace set towards the local system agenda and Active Devon is well placed with its partners to capitalise.

We’ll continue our approach of assessing the opportunities presented at national level. Whilst working really hard with partners locally to ensure they make sense and drive impact in the wonderful, diverse place that is Devon.

I really hope you enjoy the Annual Review and look forward to working with you in the year ahead.

Please click here to read the Annual Review.

Matt Evans, Chief Executive for Active Devon.