Tracey Stakes took the reins as chief executive of Belong in 2017, having played an instrumental role in the development and expansion of the Belong village model as finance director and member of the executive team.
She was key to the transformation of the organisation from traditional care home provision to pioneering care villages, offering older people access to a range of facilities, services and accommodation, and specialising in maximising independence and quality of life for people with dementia.
In her first year as chief executive, Tracey has made significant impact in establishing new partnerships and vehicles to enable the expansion of the Belong village model. In particular, she has led the launch of Belong’s first retail charity bond, raising £50m from investors. The fact that the bond was oversubscribed is testament to the success of the Belong villages, both in terms of the business model and their positive social impact in providing valuable services for older people.
This demand is seen in the high occupancy levels (over 97%) and growth of its home care and day care services. Belong operates efficiently to ensure surpluses are available to reinvest in high quality services, working environment and expansion.
All Belong services are rated Good or Outstanding by the Care Quality Commission, with two of the Outstanding ratings being achieved in the past year, and the organisation is accredited as a Gold Investor in People, placing significant emphasis on developing its people to become the next generation of leaders.
A powerful testament to Tracey’s stewardship was seen in the results of the recent employee survey, which showed that 99% of employees would recommend Belong as a place to work and 95% trust the organisation’s leadership.