Alongside the celebrations of excellence on Monday, Institute Chairman Martin Bell named two charities to be supported by IWFM, the Ethical Property Foundation and the National Autistic Society.
In a break with the past, where charity choice was personal to the incoming chair, Martin and the Board agreed that the Institute should itself select a charity that best aligns to IWFM values and society’s workplace and facilities management needs, with the other remaining the chair’s choice.
The UK property advice charity for the voluntary sector, the Ethical Property Foundation, becomes the IWFM’s charity partner under a five-year arrangement. The EPF provides free, expert property education & advice to local groups in cities and towns across the country in partnership with facilities and property experts. Since 2006 it has helped over five thousand groups across the country from watermills to community theatres from children’s centres to crumbling castles and offices.
CEO Linda Hausmanis said: “I am thrilled to be working with the EPF whose work aligns closely with IWFM’s own values to be knowledgeable, human and inspiring. I daresay many IWFM members have worked with EPF over the years, helping all kinds of facility, and we look forward to supporting its aims while advancing our profession”.
Welcoming the move, EPF’s CEO Antonia Swinson said
“The Ethical Property Foundation is delighted to join IWFM in a new strategic charity partnership. These are exciting and demanding times for everyone working in the voluntary sector, with effective workplace management increasingly recognised as playing a vital role in serving our causes and communities and we look forward very much to engaging with IWFM members in this important work.”
The National Autistic Society (NAS) has been adopted by the Chairman for his two-year tenure. It wants to achieve its vision of a society that works for autistic people by transforming lives and changing attitudes of autism in wider society. NAS is the UK's largest provider of specialist autism services and it provides support and practical information for the 700,000 autistic adults and children in the UK, as well as their three million family members and carers.
Outlining his choice, Martin Bell told the Grosvenor House audience “The shining examples of TV wildlife expert Chris Packham and most recently, climate change activist Greta Thunberg have shown us that people on the autistic spectrum can make a profound contribution to society in a most direct and relatable way. However, three quarters of a million adults and children in the UK face serious difficulties and barriers to the things most of us take for granted, in and out of work.”
The NAS says “We have come a long way, but it is not good enough. There is still so much to do to increase opportunities, reduce social isolation and build a brighter future for people on the spectrum. With your help, we can make it happen”.
Please look at the work these excellent charities deliver on our social media channels and website.