This month Reall says goodbye to our Board Chair, David Orr. David has offered Reall unwavering support and expertise essential to the successful governance of Reall over his seven-year term.
We now welcome Chris Loughlin as Board Chair. Chris brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to support Reall in our mission to build a home for human potential.
We sat down with both David and Chris to hear their insights on Reall’s journey and our audacious goal of putting a roof over the head of humanity.
What motivated you to join Reall as chair of the board?
I’d known about Reall’s work through my involvement with the Scottish Federation of Housing Associations, who originally helped set Reall up. When a vacancy arose as Chair I was really happy to take that role on. I thought then, as I think now, that this is an organisation with a lot of creativity and huge potential.
As chair you have an in-depth knowledge of Reall and how we operate, what do you think makes Reall unique?
The combination of investing in affordable homes via innovative models and the commitment to building a movement for affordable homes is a compelling combination and it’s a combination that no one else is offering.
Your role as chair involved visiting Reall’s in-country Partners. What did you take away from these visits?
The problem is not that people don’t know how to build houses, because they do; it’s very often that the markets in which they are trying to operate are ineffective. But the inspiring thing about all these visits is that people on low incomes want to be involved in building a great life for themselves by building good homes and we have Partners whose commitment to doing this is fantastic.
As your term as Chair comes to an end, where do you think Reall is now and where do you hope to see Reall in the future?
Reall has a strong executive team, a brilliant staff group and a strong and committed board. I think we have good relationships with core funders and are developing the potential to bring in money from new sources. I think Reall is solid, it’s well-grounded, and I think its potential in the future is unlimited.
What motivated you to join Reall as Chair of the Board?
These are exciting times for Reall. It has re-energised itself with an amazing mission. When the opportunity emerged, it was an honour to be considered and I hope my expertise will help Reall deliver.
You have extensive experience in the water industry. What do you hope this will bring to your role at Reall?
If I look back on my career I’ve always tended to work in the corporate world, but in places that have a defined social purpose. I think my skills and expertise, particularly in water and sanitation, is very applicable to Reall.
Reall actively tackles the global housing challenge. How do you interpret this challenge?
I’ve seen many times, particularly in urban communities, how people’s life chances are limited by a lack of basic rights. Our task is to help empower people on low incomes so they can determine their own future in a way which is not restricted by unjust circumstances beyond their control.
Where do you hope to see Reall in the future?
Reall has an ambitious vision, not only to provide much-needed housing, but to create a movement that brings about market transformation. If we can look back and see evidence of this influence in the sector and people’s lives it will be a great achievement.