Wednesday 26 November 2014

Thank You!

Well, this is my last week and I would like to extend my thanks to Members, volunteers, staff and Trustees for their terrific commitment and hard work in making Hafal such a dynamic and positive charity. We have seen so many clients transform their lives and make huge strides towards recovery during the lifetime of the charity, and it has been thrilling to be a part of Hafal's client-led recovery movement.

However, after 10 years (nearly 20 if you include the time when we were part of Rethink) I am keen to do new things. I'm delighted to be leaving the charity in safe hands with the appointment of Alun Thomas as our new CEO. I wish him - and everyone else who supports our important work - every success. I am very optimistic for Hafal’s future under Alun’s tried and tested leadership.

I will remain in touch and you won’t find a stronger supporter of this great charity!

And Alun has said: "It’s a privilege to follow Bill into this exciting role and I will work hard to ensure the continuing success of the organisation. I look forward to delivering on our mission to provide hope and practical support to people with a serious mental illness and their carers in Wales - and to achieve a better deal for the users of mental health services."


I enjoyed this insight into the challenges of being a Chief Executive!

Sunday 9 November 2014

Bernese Oberland?

This afternoon I made my first visit to Craig-y-Rhaiadr - not the famous one in Snowdonia swarmed over by mountaineers but the best kept secret one in Carmarthenshire, a couple of miles north of Cil-y-cwm.

The waterfall and its surroundings are just like the famous Reichenbach Falls over which Sherlock Holmes tumbled with Moriarty - or rather he didn't and played a cruel trick on Dr Watson by pretending he had, complete with a highly improbable note left on the cliff edge.

You can get a better idea of the falls and their setting from my video here...

You can't get to the falls without a significant walk of about 8,000 paces (round trip) recorded on the Hafal Let's Get Physical! pedometer - nearer 10,000 paces if you are vertically challenged - and it's a hard uphill slog.

But all the more rewarding for that.

The real Reichenbach Falls in Switzerland

Holmes and Moriarty on the edge...

Great Welsh Bake-Off

Product of our Matisse-inspired art workshop

I enjoyed our excellent Autumn Conference last Thursday in Builth Wells which had me making a pizza...

Showing it off...

Interviewing our bake-off judge Dawn...

And thanking everybody for their kind words and for a delicious cake: this was my last event as Chief Exec of Hafal (note the flour from the pizza-making all over my trousers)...

Back home Huw and Rhys admire the drift-wood Christmas tree I made under the supervision of the team at Hafal Cardiff's stand...