Our news

Launching our new vision

It was a year ago today that I started in the role of Chief CEO at Culham St Gabriel’s. It’s been an amazing year. It’s been great to work with so many talented people and organisations which are passionate about education in religion and worldviews. In the last couple of weeks, it’s been fantastic to see over 1000 teachers sign up to our self-study courses. I’m also really thrilled about new virtual seminars and events coming up this term in partnership with all the main RE organisations.

As today marks my first anniversary, it also seemed a good opportunity to share with you some of our plans for the future. The Trustees, staff and consultants have worked hard over the last few months to shape a new vision, mission and strategy for the Trust. We have also reflected on our values and ways of working.

Our new vision is for a broad based, critical and reflective education in religion and worldviews contributing to a well-informed, respectful and open society. We are deliberately using the language of religion and worldviews supporting the vision of the Commission on RE (2018) and look forward to the shaping of this newly defined subject over the coming year. There is much work going on around this at the moment, including a number of publications already in the public domain or soon to be published. In addition, we have emphasised, that high-quality religion and worldviews is not an end in itself but contributes to the transformation of society. This is really important for us as a charity. Above all, we exist to make a difference.

So, we have a big vision! It has therefore been important to consider what the Trust’s unique contribution to this vision is, our specific mission. We have identified six strands to this, and they are:

  • Increasing public understanding of religion and worldviews education
  • Engaging with, informing and influencing decision makers
  • Creating well-informed, empowered and influential educationalists
  • Establishing and building strategic and collaborative partnerships and networks
  • Commissioning and publishing focused and accessible research
  • Championing and developing inspired and well-resourced teaching and learning

You will see that we are shifting our focus to work not only with the immediate world of RE professionals but also to engage with the public, with policy makers, and other influencers. We are really excited about the new emphasis in our mission and look forward to conversations with many of you about how we can work together towards fulfilling it.

So how will we do this? This is about the ways we work and the values that underpin all we do. In talking with colleagues, two of the most important words that came through were collaboration and connectivity. We aim for positive relationships with an emphasis on partnership and networking. We have also been moving towards being more open and transparent.

Listening to others, valuing diversity and sharing our work. Having integrity in all we do is vital.  We strive to be honest, authentic, dependable and trustworthy in the way we work. Above all we are about serving and empowering others. We endeavour to be responsive, generous and available to everyone. We aim to facilitate others to grow in confidence, be creative and bring about change. As an endowed foundation, being good stewards is paramount. We are committed to ensuring a good return on our investments and to use time and resources effectively. Over the coming months we will be making these values more explicit in our communications and they will shape the ways we work now and in the future.

I hope you have captured some of my enthusiasm and excitement for where the Trust is going next. We are really delighted by our new vision, mission and distinct values. We look forward to partnering with you in working towards our vision and putting our mission into action.

In my next blog/vlog I will share more about our specific strategic objectives for the next three years and how we plan to put these into action.

Kathryn Wright

CEO, Culham St Gabriel’s Trust