I can’t express just how delighted and proud I am to formally announce that Cherry Trees has been awarded an Outstanding judgement by Ofsted.

Cherry Trees provides home-from-home care for children with complex disabilities and a meaningful break for their families across Surrey and into the surrounding counties. Last year, we supported 75 families with 1,512 sleepovers and 603 tea or day visits. We also ran family activities, hosted wellbeing days, and provided small but vital financial grants through our bursary and welfare funds.

Families say Cherry Trees is their lifeline and without our meaningful support, they are at greater risk of reaching crisis and family breakdown. 

From the moment I joined the Cherry Trees family, it was very apparent just how unique and special the Charity is. It has now been verified by our regulatory body. The care we deliver, and the outcomes the children and families subsequently receive, is outstanding.

2009 was the last time that Cherry Trees was awarded this judgment, one that is rarely awarded by Ofsted. In fact, only 16% of short break homes nationally were awarded an Outstanding judgement in the year to 31 March 2022, and within the last year, Cherry Trees was just the second provision the lead inspector had given an Outstanding judgement to.

The criteria to achieve this grading is long and detailed, but I would like to share a couple of extracts from the report that really pleased me as they highlight our values and ethos of Child First, Disability Second.

‘Children with complex communication difficulties have a voice in this home. Staff are phenomenal in promoting choice for each individual child and in understanding the specific ways in which each child communicates.’

‘Parents and carers are overwhelmingly positive about the high standard of care and the quality of children’s short-stay experiences. One parent said, “Staff support is like an extension of family.”’

This means that the care we provide the children and their families is outstanding.

This is due in no small part to the hard work and dedication of our team of staff and all those who support us as volunteers, fundraisers and donors. Every single person involved in the Charity has helped. To you all, this grading demonstrates your unquestionable commitment and passion to providing the highest possible standards of care day and night, day after day. But most importantly, as nice as it is, you don’t do this for regulatory recognition, you do this to make a real and lasting difference to the lives of the children and families who need us. And that is why we are so proud of this grading.

It has been a long-term goal of ours to become a centre of excellence, where we can mentor and share good practice with other providers and help more children and families to have happier, healthier and fulfilled lives. Part of this judgement recognises that ‘there are examples of excellent practice that are worthy of wider dissemination’. We are now even more determined to continue to advocate for Outstanding care delivery.

Thank you to everyone involved and helping us deliver outstanding care. 

Join our Team

If you would like to help make a meaningful difference to the lives of children with disabilities and their families or are interested in joining our Outstanding Team, please see our current opportunities or give us a call on 01483 222 506.