Community News

Changes at the top for Sussex Beacon

Besi Besemar September 29, 2017

A management restructure to cut costs at the Sussex Beacon, sees both its Chief Executive, Simon Dowe and Clinical Services Director Jason Warriner stepping down from their roles at the charity by mutual agreement with the Board of Trustees.

While both Simon and Jason are respected experts in their fields and have been effective, professional and hard-working, Trustees say funding losses at the Sussex Beacon have meant it is impossible for the charity to keep the roles they fulfil in place.

Simon Dowe
Simon Dowe

Simon will remain at the Beacon until the end of the year and will help the transition through the Autumn. Jason will continue to be employed by The Sussex Beacon until the end of November.

After facing potential closure due to funding cuts earlier this year, work will be ongoing in the coming months to secure the future of the organisation.

Meanwhile, Trustees at the Sussex Beacon say they will continue to work on a strategy to ensure the organisation continues to meet the needs of local people living with HIV and their plans to appoint a specialist Executive Director to work with staff to guide the charity through the period of transition in the year ahead.

Jason Warringer
Jason Warringer

Plans are also in place to ensure that clinical services remain safe and high quality.

While the charity’s Trustees are in the early stages of developing a new strategy for survival, they say they will be working with stakeholders/ funders to ensure The Sussex Beacon continues to meet the needs of local people living with HIV.

Earlier this year national charity Terrence Higgins Trust (THT) offered support to the The Sussex Beacon and the two organisations will be working closely together with THT providing help with areas including IT, finance, and back office support.

Lynette Lowndes
Lynette Lowndes

Lynette Lowndes, Chair of Trustees at The Sussex Beacon, said: “While we’re still providing high quality, personalised care for people with HIV, behind the scenes there’s a lot going on. Trustees are working on a new strategy, aiming to make the charity as financially robust as possible. Simon and Jason will be missed, they have both worked incredibly hard for The Sussex Beacon, including contributing significantly to us being rated ‘outstanding’ by the Care Quality Commission. We’re so grateful to them, but we’ve agreed the restructure is essential as we try to ensure the charity is financially stable over the coming years.”

She continued: “I know that things are difficult for our staff and volunteers at the moment. They are doing a fantastic job, despite the recent uncertainty and we’ll do all we can to support them through this period of transition. We don’t want the charity to remain as it is, struggling from month to month and living with the threat of closure. We want to ensure we make changes that will allow The Sussex Beacon to keep its doors open, providing vital support to those who need us.”

The Sussex Beacon provides specialist support and care for people living with HIV through both inpatient and outpatient services. It helps hundreds of people living with HIV in Sussex each year and was rated ‘outstanding’ by the Care Quality Commission last September.

For further information about The Sussex Beacon, click here:


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