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Introducing Project Mead

An introduction to Project Mead from our Interim Director for Services and Support, Gavin Atkins

I’ve been at the MS Society for just over two months now and have had a chance to meet volunteers and groups that are part of our incredible work. I’m struck by two things: the incredible dedication and commitment shown by the people I meet and the potential to do more for people affected by MS.

Building from what is already great, over the next two and a half years, the aim of Project Mead will be transform the service and support we provide to the MS community. This includes how we deliver our services across our central offer, and in the regions and nations and in the MS community. It also includes how we we’ll innovate our services to offer more choices and support and reach more people.

We named this work Project Mead after Margaret Mead, an American anthropologist, who said, "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed individuals can change the world. In fact, it's the only thing that ever has." We believe that by working together with volunteers and staff, we can make a real difference to the MS community.

This transformation will allow us to develop a tailored experience to match the needs of the MS community. And we’ll be making our services and support accessible to more people than ever before.

Involving people in our work

At the beginning of a big year for Project Mead, our focus so far has been to look at how we involve the MS community, volunteers and staff in our work. We’ve recruited two members of the MS community to our Steering Group to ensure that we keep the needs of our community, including our volunteer groups, at the very heart of the decisions we’re making.

We’ve also started to work with a partner to look at what services and support the MS community wants from us — both now and into the future. And we know that groups and volunteers are a vital provider of these services locally.

Our research partner will be contacting a selection of groups in the coming weeks to better understand the range of services on offer, and the impact these services have in the community. They will also be looking at existing research and data to paint this picture. This research will help us to understand the ways that our current offer meets the needs of our community in 2024. And to find out what you, our volunteers, need from us to support you to deliver an excellent standard of reputable support and services to our community.

Find out more

It’s a project that I’m really excited about, and we’ll be sharing regular project updates in the volunteer newsletter. The project team and I are also keen on going out and meeting groups doing great things for their communities. If you have any questions, or you’re happy for us to come and visit, please do email [email protected]