Looking back over the past few years with our CEO

When I started at Nordoff Robbins in January 2015 I had no idea what an amazing charity I was joining.

The charity has a long history, delivering music therapy for more than 40 years to so many vulnerable and disadvantaged people. Two and a half years into my journey here we are reflecting on the developments here at Nordoff Robbins and planning for the next few years ahead.

During 2016 we supported nearly 7000 people with our life-changing music – up 65% on the previous year. We have continued to support children, adults and older people that have some of the most challenging life conditions delivering our music therapy in schools, hospitals, hospices, care homes, children’s centres, prisons and community centres. We are delivering our music therapy across more partnerships and more geographical areas than ever before.

Our direct referral work is now free, thanks to our supporters and funders, so we can really ensure that we tailor the service to those most in need.

Our masters training programme is still the bedrock of our organisation. In training our music therapist in the Nordoff Robbins approach to music therapy we can quality-assure our delivery. Since January 2015 we have committed to employing a minimum of 50% of our graduates and I am delighted that we have exceeded this commitment. People are our most important resource and by committing to our graduates this is helping us to achieve our overall goal of doubling our music therapy provision since 2015.

Nordoff Robbins has been heavily supported by the music industry and has an array of committees and volunteers that work tirelessly behind the scenes helping us. Leading this commitment is David Munns OBE who chairs the Board of Trustees and during my tenure here we have strengthened the Board to help us set the strategic vision and guide this ambitious expansion programme.

The O2 Silver Clef Award event celebrated its 40th birthday in 2015, the year I joined, and is such a special event within our calendar. I was struck by the amazing committee of supporters that helped us deliver the event and the room at the Grosvenor full of people committed to our work. We raised £700,000 and I know that this funding is being used to employ more music therapists who in turn are supporting people right across the UK all year round.

At this midpoint of our strategic review we are now planning with confidence. We know we will meet our target of doubling our provision much earlier than we thought so we are planning new geographical areas, new provision and continuing that commitment to our graduates.

Without our long-standing supporters attending the amazing Nordoff Robbins events, undertaking challenge events for us and giving their time, we would be no-where. At the launch of the newly-refurbished London centre it was a real joy to see the long standing supporters, partners and donors there to endorse our recent journey and to reaffirm their commitment to the next few years.

Whilst we have achieved so much we know there are so many people needing our support. There has never been a time where the importance of wellbeing has had such recognition and Nordoff Robbins knows that we can fundamentally help so many more people have a quality of life they deserve.