Ambitious new strategy for YoungDementia UK

Strategy development for an award-winning dementia charity

Following new government initiatives on the delivery of dementia services and changes within the charity, YoungDementia UK decided to review its mission and develop an ambitious new strategy to ensure the charity continues to be well placed in providing a full range of support services for people with young onset dementia and their families.

YoungDementia UK is an Oxfordshire-based charity providing award-winning services for younger people with dementia. Since 1996 the charity has provided support and services for people with young onset dementia, their families and friends. YoungDementia UK was an Oxfordshire charity of the year finalist in 2011 and won a European Foundation’s Initiative on Dementia (EFID) award in 2012.

YoungDementia UK has built a strong reputation in the field of young onset dementia for the quality of support and services it provides. However, following changes in the chairmanship and Board of Trustees of the charity, and the potential changes in the delivery of dementia services as a result of government initiatives, the Board of Trustees together with Director, Tessa Gutteridge, felt the time was right to review the charity’s future strategy.

Verve Consulting was appointed by YoungDementia UK to work with the charity on the development of the strategy. Director, Tessa Gutteridge explains: “We decided to engage Verve because we wanted someone who was independent of the Board, but who had a proven track record of understanding strategy and the charity sector.”

Working closely with Tessa and the Board of Trustees, Verve managed the strategy process, including setting up and facilitating a workshop that covered the mission, strategic options and development of a new 3 year strategy.

Tessa continues: “Verve Consulting’s involvement meant that we were able to commit quality time to discussion about where we wanted to take the charity in the future. With Verve’s knowledge of the charity sector they were able to challenge our assumptions and help us get clarity into our thinking. And finally, Verve’s experience with strategy work ensured we focused on achievements, rather than the process, to give us a far better outcome.”

Summing up Verve Consulting’s overall role, Tessa added, “Verve’s contribution provided us with a number of benefits, but above all their involvement excited and motivated the trustees about planning and the future. Everyone was bubbling about the workshop afterwards and it’s up to us to keep that going now. It’s a period of significant change in dementia care and we now have a great opportunity to build on our reputation.”