Speech — Transform Housing & Support: Welcome Remarks, 26 September 2019

Good evening, and welcome to the University of Surrey!

It is exactly one year since we last had the honour of hosting Transform, and so much has happened since then. For better or for worse, Brexit was NOT one of them.

At both the University and at Transform, there has been a lot of hard work and initiatives as we go forward within a constantly-shifting political and socio-economic landscape. In such uncertain times, we depend especially on our partnerships to keep us strong, viable and grounded in our mission.

Many of you will know how important collaboration is to Surrey: Surrey is made up of many talented individuals, but it’s when we work together, and connect with external institutions, businesses and government, that we are strongest.

To me, Transform embodies the same philosophy of collaboration. I know that one of your core values is Responsibility, and this is expressed through working in partnerships to transform lives.

By drawing together an impressive wealth of experience across our community, Transform is able to tap into new perspectives, shared resources and generous support. We can always be learning from each other, and this is the spirit that will sustain our partnerships.

The University is privileged to be able to call upon our capabilities in research and technology to enhance our collaboration with Transform. Together, we may be able to identify new models of care for the vulnerable in the digital age, underpinned by sound academic research and innovation. Our expertise in nursing, social sciences, medicine and digital health will further strengthen our efforts to care for those in great need in our community.

I am very proud to be the patron of an organisation that provides such a vital service to our community, and to work with such dedicated and inspiring people as yourselves.

I think it was John Bunyan who said, “You have never really lived until you have done something for someone who can never repay you.” Transform’s service continues to be impossible to repay – in the best possible way!  Your commitment, compassion and hard work enrich lives across our community.

Best wishes to the endeavours of Transform, and I look forward to our continued partnership well into the future.

Thank you.