Summer 2020 issue
Est. Reading: 2 minutes

Chief Executive FOREWORD

I am writing this, my last foreword for Trusttalk, with a mixture of emotions; excitement as I embark on a new adventure, but a strong sense that a very special era in my life is coming to an end.

As well as the four years I have been Chief Executive for ELFT, I had a clinical career working as a Consultant Psychiatrist in Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services in Newham. I often say I grew up in ELFT.

Although I arrived with my medical training under my belt and some work experience from other roles in other places, it is here that I found my clinical self, in a place where there was incredible need, and a chance to work with people who wanted to develop services that made a difference. People who admired and were in awe of the families we met for their courage and their will make changes that would help them to thrive despite the inequalities they experienced in life. I occasionally bump into young people I knew back then who are now young adults and I think - wow.

It has been a very exciting time to be part of the NHS in East London, Luton, Bedfordshire and not forgetting Richmond. Maybe it is always an exciting time to work in health care as services evolve, are tested and evolve again. We ask a lot of our staff - change is a continuum as our knowledge and understanding grows, but we wouldn’t be here if we didn’t embrace and enjoy adapting to new things.

That could not have been illustrated more than in these last six months. My heart is bursting with pride at the way our staff have responded, despite their worries about risks to themselves, their families, and the people they care for. They have pulled together, stepped up - and out of their roles, and looked after each other. I know the pressure at times has been overwhelming but in over 400 personal calls I made to staff to thank them during this time, their good spirits and fortitude took my breath away.

So as I make my farewells, I want to thank our staff for always astounding me, for being honest with me, for answering my endless questions and for supporting me and the organisation. Gaining a CQC Outstanding accreditation once, was such a milestone. To keep up the momentum and high quality to get an Outstanding accreditation a second time, tells you all you need to know about our workforce.

I want to thank service users and carers for helping me/us understand what is needed. Some of these conversations were a result of things not having gone well. I have appreciated these frank and open discussions.

I want to thank our Governors and the non-executive directors, past and present, for trusting me to lead the Trust, for guiding me and challenging me.

And finally, I want to thank our executive directors and service directors for their counsel and their wisdom. I know ELFT has a strong and able leadership team in place, and with our new Chair Mark Lam, I can’t wait to see where the next few years takes you.

Dr Navina Evans

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.