Page URL: https://www.progress.org.uk/trusteesreport2007
This document is part of the Progress Educational Trust (PET)'s reports and accounts for the year ended 31 March 2007, as submitted to the Charity Commission.
The charity's 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and 2008 reports and accounts are also available on this website.

Trustees' Report for the year ended 31 March 2007

The Trustees present their report for the year ended 31 March 2007.

Charity information
Trustees: Professor David Whittingham (Chair until March 2007)
Professor Marcus Pembrey (from February 2007, Chair from March 2007)
Dr Virginia Bolton (until March 2007)
Peter Brinsden (until October 2006)
Dr Caroline Fertleman (until March 2007)
Dr Fred Kavalier (until March 2007)
Laura Riley (from March 2007)
Juliet Tizzard (from March 2007)
Advisory Committee: Dr Kamal Ahuja
Janric Craigavon
Malcolm Hodgson
Dr Fred Kavalier (from March 2007)
Alastair Kent
Stuart Lavery
Trisha Macnair
Dr Stephen Minger
Clare Murray
John Parsons
Professor Marcus Pembrey (until February 2007)
Dr Elisabeth Rosser
Charity number: 1011897
Charity offices: 140 Gray's Inn Road, London, WC1X 8AX
Auditors: John Green and Co, Certified Accountants and Registered Auditors, Suite 2.16, Astra House, Arklow Road, London SE14 6EB, UK
Bankers: Royal Bank of Scotland, 28 Cavendish Square, London W1M 0DB, UK

Trustees
Those named under 'Charity information' served as indicated for the year ended 31 March 2007. The four Trustees serving throughout 2006 resigned on 8 March 2007 leaving Professor Marcus Pembrey as the new Chair. Laura Riley and Juliet Tizzard became Trustees in March 2007 these positions being formally ratified at the 3 April 2007 meeting.

Appointment of new Trustees
Trustees are usually appointed after joining and serving some time on the PET's Advisory Committee or as a member of Staff. This helps determine whether they have the right level of skills and commitment to act as Trustees.

Trust Deed and objectives
The charity is governed by a Trust Deed dated 17 May 1992. The Trust was registered as a charity on 15 June 1992.
The object of the charity is to advance the education of the public in all matters involving human fertility and the human embryo and in particular to undertake research increasing knowledge concerning the causes and prevention of congenital disease; and increasing knowledge about the causes of miscarriage.In furtherance to this object, the charity has power to:
collect and publish information leaflets, books, newsletters, films and audio to inform and educate members of the public on such research, its regulation and its implications for the future of society;
promote exhibitions, lectures, seminars and courses to inform and educate members of the public on such research, its regulation and its implications for the future of society;
promote the information and educational services provided by the charity to members of the public including individuals, local education authorities, schools, colleges, governing bodies and other interested parties.

Development activities and achievements
BioNews
BioNews, the charity's free online news service and comment resource attracted a growing numbers of subscribers. BioNews received funding from AstraZeneca and Planer in the early part of the year. Later in the year funding came from the Department of Health to underpin BioNews during the parliamentary review of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 1990.
A Child Against All Odds
The charity was commissioned by the BBC to carry out a number of projects for their 'A Child Against All Odds' season. The main component was a series of six documentaries presented by Professor Lord Robert Winston which explored a variety of issues concerning families who suffer from fertility problems. Running parallel to the documentaries were six radio debates to discuss the issues raised by the programmes. The charity acted as a consultant in the preparation of these programmes, assisting with content, speakers and publicity. A nationwide poll was carried out by the charity on infertility issues with the charity providing expert advice in terms of content and in publicising the results. The charity was invited to comment on these findings on Radio 4's Woman's Hour alongside Professor Winston.
Annual Conference
Nature, Nurture or Neither
PET's annual conference was held in partnership with the Galton Institute on 19 October 2006 at the Institute of Child Health. The one-day conference explored how genes and their environment interact. Speakers were Professor Steve Jones, Dr Francis Elmslie and Professors Alan Handyside, Marcus Pembrey, David Strachan and David Nutt. Professor Marcus Pembrey, the charity's founding Chair (who has now resumed the role of Chair of Trustees) was the 2006 Galton Lecturer in recognition of his contributions to the field of medical genetics.
International Regulations database
New Zealand's Ministry of Health purchased access to the charity's International Regulations in Assisted Reproduction and Embryo Research.
Jeans for Genes
The charity again produced the content for Jeans for Genes' schools packs, which form an integral part of their annual fundraising appeal to help children with genetic conditions. Feedback on the previous year's packs was very positive and the charity's expertise was used to further develop the packs. We expect PET's relationship with Jeans for Genes to continue.
British Society for Human Genetics press work
The charity's expertise was employed by the British Society for Human Genetics (BSHG) to assist with their press office activities. The charity ran BSHG's press office at their annual conference held in York in September 2006. As a result of the charity's work, research presented at the meeting was reported in the local and national media, a first for the BSHG. The charity also organised an 'Introduction to the Media' session for conference attendees which provided scientists and clinicians with a basic insight in to how they could successfully work with the media. This was well received.
Genepool
PET continued to provide news content for Genepool, the online genetics service aimed at general practitioners and other health professionals. This service was discontinued in June 2006 and the charity's contract was necessarily terminated.
Guide to Genetics
The charity continued to promote its Guide to Genetics as an educational resource. Bulk sales were made to Newcastle University for GP training sessions and to Bridge Genoma, a new genetic testing facility, who distributed the Guide at their launch event. The Guide continues to be well received.
European Society for Human Reproduction and Embryology conference
The charity was sponsored by Planer to attend this conference in Prague on 18-21 June 2006. The charity reported the main findings of the conference in two special issues of BioNews and produced a special report for Planer.
Wellcome Trust debates
The first debate of a series to be funded by the Wellcome Trust was organised on the subject of genetics and cousin marriages and was to take place in Bradford. Unfortunately this highly political debate had to be cancelled at the last minute due to the withdrawal of a keynote speaker.

Personnel
Laura Riley (director) left in April 2006. Khadija Ibrahim, the communications officer, replaced her. Jess Buxton and Kirsty Horsey continued to work part-time editing BioNews.

Financial situation
The charity was confronted with a shortage of financial resources for much of the year. This resulted in a reduced level of activity and ultimately to the need to lay off members of Staff. Following a reorganisation, additional funds were secured and Staff were re-engaged. By the end of the year the financial situation had turned round. A net deficit of £12,149 at the beginning of the year was converted to net assets of £25,730 by the year end.

Future developments
By April 2007 it was clear that only having one full-time member of Staff in the office was below the critical mass needed to both run the charity's activities (including debates, conference and BioNews commissioning) and to fund raise through grants and contracts. In the later part of 2007 and in 2008, the charity has enjoyed further success in fundraising which has allowed us to take on new work and Staff. A new Director, a new Communications Officer and a new Science Information Officer have joined the Progress team. The level of activity has increased substantially with the charity playing an active role in airing issues relating to revision of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill.

Approval
This report was approved by the Trustees on 9 April 2008 and signed on their behalf by Professor Marcus Pembrey (Trustee).