TACT continues investing in vulnerable children through growth and innovation

Author: PCF

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TACT have filed their financial results for 2017/18 with the Charity Commission and Companies House. In 2017/18 TACT made a significant investment in their services for vulnerable children. Read more here:

As the UK’s largest fostering and adoption charity, The Adolescent and Children’s Trust (TACT), sees it as integral to our charitable mission to be at the forefront of innovation in the children’s care sector.

With this ethos in mind, the 2017/18 Financial Year has seen us invest in growing our footprint in the UK and pioneering the delivery of new models for permanency services. The most visible of these was our successful bid for the Peterborough City Council (PCC) permanency service and our takeover of the service in April 2017.

Being a charity has allowed TACT to take a long-term view on this investment, over £1.6 million, with a clear expectation that over the lifetime of this 10-year (and potentially 20-year) contract we will achieve a break-even situation, and position TACT as the partner of choice for other Local Authorities looking for innovative solutions in the delivery and improvement of permanency services.

The children in our care are already seeing the benefit of this investment, with the feedback from the children, the carers and the staff being extremely positive. The improvement has also been noted by Ofsted, who in their recent ILACS inspection of PCCs children services (including our service), gave the Council their first “Good across all areas” rating in Peterborough’s history. Justifying our vision for the standards of care for looked after children and young people, and our investment in the front end of this contract.

Alongside this, we have continued to invest in geographical growth across our pre-existing fostering services across England, Scotland and Wales. As in all such ventures the first years are investment years, which will lead to growth and a return in the coming years.

Unfortunately, it hasn’t been all good news in 2017/18, we have reviewed our property portfolio and determined that it is no longer fit for purpose, we will be disposing of a number of our legacy properties in 2018/19 and investing in new space that will allow us to deliver services in a more appropriate environment. This process has also identified that the valuations of the properties in the portfolio need to be adjusted down by £595,000 in our accounts for 2017/18.

The broader market in which TACT exists, is now rife with private equity investment and leveraged debt. We are in the fortunate position of having been the first one to take on a whole local authority permanence service, and to have a widening and deepening geographic presence in England, Scotland and Wales.

As a charity, we seek to offer high quality affordable services to local authorities, through the provision of safe and stable foster and adoptive homes. 2017/18 was an exciting and expensive year for TACT but one that we are confident will pay off for our foster, adoptive and kinship children and families – and TACT – in the medium and long term.

In 2018/19, our expectation is that we will move towards breaking even financially, with the positive impact from our investment showing from the 2019/20 financial period.