2011: the year in review

What a great year 2011 has been for Friendship Works! I’m so proud of all of the progress that we’ve made and wanted to thank everybody who has worked so hard to make it all possible.

Most importantly we supported a record number of new children this year, finding volunteer mentors for 61 children from our waiting list. We also tripled the number of volunteers applying over the year and trained 92 of these. Thank you to all of our volunteers and families.

We had our most successful ever fundraising event with the team of cyclists who raised £250,000 during their London to Paris ride. And Jonathan Pryce hosted yet another fantastic Christmas show for us, raising £110,000 at Café de Paris earlier this month. Thank you to everybody who’s helped raise money for us this year. Words cannot express our gratitude for your generosity and support in these difficult times.

We were also delighted to win the Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BAML) Neighbourhood Builder Award. This is an incredibly prestigious award with just two recipients in the UK each year. The award also comes with the opportunity for two staff from Friendship Works to attend leadership training in the US with some of America’s leading charities. Thank you BAML for investing in us.

Next year will bring new challenges. We expect it to be a tougher financial environment for charities. We also know that we need to continue to improve our volunteer recruitment so that we can support more children from our waiting list. Despite these challenges, we feel very optimistic about 2012 and look forward to updating you all on our progress during the year.

On behalf of all of the families, volunteers, staff and trustees at Friendship Works, thank you all so much for your support this year.  We wish you a very happy Christmas and all success in 2012.