Leonard Cheshire Disability has asked Chatsworth Communications to handle all of its external comms and media relations activity as the charity undergoes a restructure.
The City agency has been retained to promote the charity's services and campaign work. As well as media relations, Chatsworth will help in-house teams to communicate effectively with internal and external stakeholders.
The agency is currently recruiting for a senior policy officer to steer its political and lobbying activity.
Chatsworth first started working with Leonard Cheshire, the UK's largest provider of support to disabled people on a project basis, at the end of last year, shortly after chief executive Eric Prescott joined the charity. The agency has been handling change communications work during the charity's wide-ranging operational restructure, but it will now step up comms activity on the charity's behalf. Before Chatsworth, the charity retained Freud Communications.
Leonard Cheshire is the 80th largest charity by voluntary income in the UK at £16.41m. The charity came 57th in PRWeek's recent Charity Brand Index. It aims to change attitudes to disability and provides care homes, supported living and work training for its service users.
Leonard Cheshire has been undergoing consultation with staff since July. This is in response to tough economic conditions and senior staff's belief that inefficiencies have crept in as the charity has grown in size.
Last week, it released Disability Review 2009, a national survey of disabled people that found 42 per cent of respondents were struggling to live on their present income, a rise of nine per cent since 2007.