Former Bailiff takes on active role after being charity patron

FORMER Bailiff Sir Richard Collas has joined the Help a Guernsey Child LBG board of directors.

After being the figurehead of Help a Guernsey Child when he was Bailiff, Sir Richard Collas has taken a more active role by becoming a director of the charity. He is pictured with its applications administrator Alex Jenner. (Picture by Peter Frankland, 28884138)
After being the figurehead of Help a Guernsey Child when he was Bailiff, Sir Richard Collas has taken a more active role by becoming a director of the charity. He is pictured with its applications administrator Alex Jenner. (Picture by Peter Frankland, 28884138)

Following his retirement as Bailiff earlier this year, he expressed a wish to continue his involvement with the charity on a grassroots level, having been the patron for many years.

Sir Richard joins chairman Peter Webber, Clare Carre, Rachel Copeland, John Hibbs and Jurat Stephen Jones on the board.

‘It is such an honour to have Richard join us and to strengthen our board even further,’ Mr Webber said.

‘This role will be somewhat different to his previous “arm’s length” role but I am sure he will get used to the large volume of emails flowing backwards and forwards between us all.’

Sir Richard said: ‘I have been an admirer of Help a Guernsey Child for many years and have seen the directors at work, quietly and promptly responding to requests to help some of the most deserving and under-privileged children in this island.

‘I was delighted when, after retiring as Bailiff, I was invited to join the board and I had no hesitation in accepting. It is sad that there is a need for such a charity in our island but I look forward to working with it and to helping where I can.’

Applications administrator Alex Jenner said the charity works with individual cases rather than larger projects, to compensate for a main gap in local funding.

It receives more than 180 applications per year, each of which is considered on an individual basis and usually responded to within 48 hours, which is a time-consuming process for those involved.

‘But our directors are very much of the opinion that if a family is in crisis then there is no point in waiting for a week to make a decision,’ she said.

‘There are, sadly, a significant number of families which struggle to pay for the day-to-day necessities of life.’

Many are in work, or are unable to pay for necessities due to medical or health reasons.

‘The net result is that they simply cannot afford either capital items such as white goods or sometimes even food, clothes, toiletries, beds, safety equipment etc.’

Most applications come via professional referrals, including social workers, health visitors, doctors and schools.

‘We deal with a wide variety of applications from stair gates through to complex medical equipment. We don’t judge and our privacy policy ensures confidentiality.’

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