November 10, 2017

New Master To Focus On Intergenerational Initiative For The South West

The Society of Merchant Venturers (SMV) has confirmed the appointment of Charles Griffiths as Master for the year 2017-18. Increasingly more outward facing, this historic organisation of 76 members, works collaboratively with individuals and organisations across the City of Bristol, supporting a broad range of sectors and individual projects. SMV’s main areas of focus are education, care for older people, charitable giving and social enterprise.

Charles joined the Society in 2004, and during his year as Master he plans to use his extensive, multi-sector experience to bring together all four of SMV’s key strands to develop a pioneering intergenerational-living initiative. His vision for the year ahead is to develop a training academy to meet the immediate and growing need to train people in social care, whilst at the same time applying the proven benefits of intergenerational living to enhance opportunities for younger people and achieve greater quality of life for older people.

A qualified accountant, Charles has been involved in the development and management of many business ventures during his career, including textiles, furniture, building supplies, construction and healthcare. But, it was his role as part owner and director of Belmont Care Ltd, a company formed to design, build and operate nursing homes, that lead to his appointment as Chair of the North Somerset Nursing Homes Association, and to what would inspire a commitment to improve standards in care for older people.

He is the former Chair of SMV’s Cote Charity and the current President of the St Monica Trust, whose most recent retirement community in Keynsham, includes 100,000 sq. ft. of office space. Located next to a newly-established residential community, the 300 residents of the Chocolate Quarter will experience intergenerational living as they share lifestyle and leisure facilities with up to 1,000 office staff as well as members of the local community.

Speaking about his plans for the year ahead, Charles said: “Already, we have galvanised enormous enthusiasm for the development of a training academy. Combining the Society’s expertise in education, care for older people, charitable giving and social business, alongside the invaluable support, commitment and expertise of others who work so closely with us, I am confident that this will be a ground-breaking initiative in the South West, benefitting both the older and the younger generation.”