Blog

Caring about the future

Sage plays vital part of modernisation for children's charity

It’s typical that in long established organisations, new processes and technology can take a back seat. We spoke to Paresh Samat, Head of Finance at The Children’s Family Trust, about how his admiration for the cause is driving the big changes he’s pushing through. 

A well established and respected charity

 

The Children’s Family Trust is an independent fostering agency working to provide exceptional foster carers for vulnerable children. In 2020, the charity reached their 75th anniversary, and had big celebrations scheduled to acknowledge their carers and children, but sadly these weren’t able to go ahead due to the pandemic. However, Paresh is making sure that regional activities can as soon as they are able. 

“We have seven carers left that have been doing it all their lives. They are all in their seventies and eighties and the children that they cared for have now got children and grandchildren. So you can imagine how far our achievements go back.” 

Easy migration

Prior to joining The Children’s Family Trust, Paresh worked at a specialist care centre so he knows the sector well. He was surprised to learn the charity were using the 2013 version of Sage 200 and contacted Datel about updating the system just a month into the role. The move to the latest system provides Paresh with improved reporting, search functionality and a much clearer user interface.     

Now up and running, Paresh notes that migrating to the new version was easier than he thought it would be. “We benefited from Datel and our IT company talking to each other and having a good relationship, that's really important.” 

Technology to meet future demands

As well as their IT system, Paresh is keen to continue improving the charity’s technology. A new telephone system and external server is now in place and they are in the process of adding two new offices, installing conferencing facilities in each one.  

Face-to-face meetings are still vital for their social workers however, and although Christmas gifts were delivered on the doorstep last month, he’s looking forward to seeing the team and ‘normal’ work continuing, this time with his future-proofing efforts securely in place.