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The ‘compelling case’ for CDG and Shaw Trust to merge

The ‘compelling case’ for CDG and Shaw Trust to merge

4 May 2012

Immediate release

Update on Careers Development Group and Shaw Trust

Careers Development Group (CDG) and Shaw Trust have announced that merger talks between the two will continue after an independent feasibility study concluded there was a ‘compelling case’ for the charities to join together.

The feasibility study, conducted by KPMG, was commissioned following talks between CDG and Shaw Trust earlier this year. It concluded that the overall case for merging the two charities would be positive for the people both charities support and also in strengthening the ability of staff to deliver that support.

Trustees of both charities will now appoint an independent organisation to carry out comprehensive due diligence, assessing all aspects of a merger to confirm that it is viable and that all significant risks and opportunities have been identified.

Roy O’Shaughnessy, Careers Development Group’s chief executive, said: “The independent feasibility study has told us that there is compelling evidence that blending our strengths and expertise is likely to be the best option rather than remaining separate or working in a more informal partnership. However, until final decisions are made after due diligence, it’s very much business as usual for both Shaw Trust and CDG.”

Chris Melvin, Shaw Trust interim chief executive, said: “We know we both share similar values however the study also shows that together we could benefit from having a greater voice and increased capacity to respond to the needs of our service users. This would mean we could be a strong third sector force at a time of national economic and employment crisis, and at a time when delivery and innovation has never been needed more.”


Notes to editors:

 About Shaw Trust and Careers Development Group

Both Shaw Trust and Careers Development Group (CDG) believe that everyone has the right to employment, inclusion and independence, and a society in which employment is available to all.

Shaw Trust ( started in the village of Shaw in Wiltshire. It was set up originally by five local people to help a small group of individuals achieve their employment aims. All were disabled, but each one had valuable skills and abilities. It became a registered charity in 1982.

Careers Development Group ( started in Wandsworth, London. The organisation was founded by several members of Wandsworth Council to specifically work with those who had been unemployed for a significant period of time. It became a registered charity in 1982.

Shaw Trust is now a national charity which last year supported 69,000 disabled and disadvantaged people to prepare for work, find jobs and live more independently. It is the UK’s largest third sector provider and one of the Government’s lead partners in the delivery of employment programmes for disabled and disadvantaged people.

CDG is a leading welfare to work charity with nearly 30 years’ experience of helping people find and stay in work. The charity supported 27,000 people in 2010/11 on their journey into work and has over 300 staff and operates from 22 centres.

Shaw Trust employs some 1,000 staff and works across the UK. It has a successful track record in delivering government programmes – from Pathways to Work, Flexible New Deal and New Deal for Disabled People to Work Choice and Work Programme – runs 47 retail outlets, owns and operates 14 enterprises that support disabled and disadvantaged people into employment, work placements or volunteering, and works with national and local employers to find the vacancies into which our clients can grow and flourish.  In addition to its work across the UK, Shaw Trust operates in partnership with Intergracja in Poland and Motivation in Romania and merged with Interwork in Australia in 2009.


CDG is one of only two third sector prime providers in the UK delivering the Work Programme (London East) – the government’s main back to work scheme. As a key part of a strategic alliance with MAXIMUS Employment & Training it also delivers the Work Programme in London West and the South East (Thames Valley, Hampshire and the Isle of Wight),as well as being a delivery partner for Avanta in Sussex. The charity is also Work Choice prime provider through its partnership with WISE Employment. It has an international presence through its partnership with BEST community development in Australia.

As part of its charitable and public benefit, CDG launched the Expert Volunteer Initiative in 2010 and CDG Volunteers in 2011, to help give further support to people wanting to find and stay in work by tapping into the expertise of people wanting to give something back. Shaw Trust also uses volunteers with its extensive social programmes related to assisting people into employment.


Further information:


Careers Development Group                                  Shaw Trust

For further information, contact                                  For further information, contact

Mark Brooks, Head of Communications:                   Gareth Nicholson, Public Affairs & Media Manager

(t)         0300 247 2014                                                (t)         01225 716300

(m)      07766 197727                                                 (m)      07540 558258

(e)                                (e)

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