Incredibly, once again our year was dominated by the disruption and unpredictability of the COVID-19 pandemic requiring us to adapt, rethink, reschedule and generally be prepared for anything! Being engaged directly in research and advocacy around the impact of COVID-19 on women and the emotional load it has created, we have been particularly mindful of how we support our staff and the culture we promote to ensure everyone’s wellbeing. Never have family-friendly policies and practices been so evidently needed, especially for those with caring responsibilities at home. Despite the challenges, our staff have been tremendous in staying the course, supporting each other and being even more productive than ever, as you will read in this report.
The Board and CEO have worked closely to constantly review areas of risk and strategies to manage this uncertainty and this has been vital to maintaining stability and sense of purpose in all areas of governance over the past year. Of particular significance for both Board and staff has been the completion of a Cultural Safety Audit, which has laid a strong foundation for the progression of our Reconciliation Action Plan which you will read more about elsewhere. This remains a key priority for WHG. We were delighted to see our new Constitution passed unanimously in February, a clear and accessible document that we believe is more fit for the purposes we now pursue, reflecting our goals in diversity and inclusion and clarity around membership and other processes.
The Board has remained stable, with the only change being the formal election of Jessica Grimble. We undertook a valuable exercise in succession planning and we seek to continue to recruit women from a diversity of backgrounds and lived experiences across the region to help steer the organisation and represent our members.