STAFF, volunteers and trustees at Community Action bid a fond farewell to their chief officer Jacci Phillips who had been at the Malvern charity for more than 13 years.
While community transport for socially isolated residents has been one of the charity’s main services, Jacci successfully developed new projects including Malvern’s Men’s Shed which began just before the pandemic struck and is relaunching this month.
She also negotiated the transfer into CA of the Malvern Hills volunteering organisation, the first step in re-establishing a Volunteer Centre in Malvern.
Jacci is moving on to pursue a family business interest and the team at Community Action wishes her every success.
Taking up the reins is Kate Walton, who is familiar with the town and its surroundings, having lived and worked in the county for more than 30 years.
Kate’s career began in the public sector, moving from the north-east to Oxford, then London and finally Worcestershire. Here she transferred to the voluntary sector to work for Pershore Volunteer Centre.
Kate has worked closely with voluntary sector colleagues across the county, including Malvern, so understands the valuable role Community Action plays in meeting the needs of local residents.
Kate said: “I’m grateful to Jacci for creating such a solid base on which the charity has been able to develop and grow, and I wish her every success in the future.
“This is an exciting new challenge for me so I’m looking forward to meeting and working with the many people and organisations linked to Community Action who help to make this such a vibrant and welcoming community.”
Kate is joining the charity at a time when the full range of services is beginning to emerge from lockdown.
One of her priorities is to recruit more volunteer drivers to ensure the charity can maintain the good work which has established Community Action’s reputation within the community.
Another aim of Kate’s will be in helping to plan a programme of events to celebrate Community Action’s 50th Anniversary in 2022. Further news on that will be released in due course.