Claire MacDonald, Chief Executive.

Can you tell us a bit about your work before you joined ELCAP?

Before joining ELCAP I was Assistant Director at Barnardo’s and lead a large and diverse portfolio of health and social care services in family support, mental health, 16+ through care after care, homes and short breaks for people with learning disability, neurodevelopmental conditions and complex health needs. Prior to that I was Chief Executive Officer at the YMCA/YWCA and in my early career I worked in the NHS and Local Authority.

What motivates you to work in our sector?

My career has been dedicated to working in the social care and health sector. This field of work gives the opportunity to enable people to fulfil their aspirations, and reach their potential using a rights based and person centred approach. I am passionate about making a difference and being in the role of Chief Executive gives me the opportunity to develop the work of colleagues and lead on wider scale system changes to tackle inequalities, which is a very privileged role to have.

What’s your proudest achievement in your career to date?  And what made it special for you?

There are many occasions I have been proud of achievements over the years both personal and professional. Proud moments have been working with teams to develop new and innovative approaches to deliver support that can make lasting change in peoples’ lives. Most defiantly – becoming the CEO at ELCAP is up there with the top achievements.

Can you tell us a bit about your Chief Executive role and what you are most looking forward to?

My role as Chief Executive is to ensure the successful operation of ELCAP in line with our charitable purpose and strategic plan to meet our vision that everyone, no matter what their individual support needs, is able to live to their full potential and be an active and valued member of their community.

I’m looking forward to leading the charity through its next phase in delivering high quality and innovative service’s and reach its mission to become the recognised gold standard in social care.

What are your early impressions of ELCAP since joining us?

I’m writing this on the second week of starting at ELCAP and have had such a lovely welcome from colleagues. There is clear dedication and passion from colleagues to provide high quality caring services and willingness to share learning. I look forward to meeting more colleagues and those who access our services in the coming weeks.

ELCAP’s mission is to become the recognised gold standard in social care.  What does a gold standard organisation look like for you?

Gold standard to me is high quality, reliable and person-centred support. This is provided by dedicated, qualified and experienced teams that continuously build on their knowledge and skills and are supported and empowered to do this by the organisation. The care and development of our work is led by the needs and wishes of those who access our services and will always be the key priority to operating a Gold Standard organisation.

If a friend was to describe you in three words, what would they say?

I asked them this question and the reply was – Compassionate, Ambitious and Fun

What’s your favourite film?  And why do you like it?

I don’t have one favourite as there are so many good ones – Comedy would be my genre.

Last but not least, what are your priorities? 

In my first few months my priorities are to build relationships with colleagues, partners and stakeholders of ELCAP. Sustain our current service delivery along with exploring opportunities to develop our work, and lead ELCAP through collaborative and creative thinking, values-based leadership and inspiring teams.