October 2015

I have now been Chair of ASO for a year and there has been much activity – some behind the scenes and some front-facing.

Many of you will have noted that Marco Presutto has joined the ASO. Marco has replaced Catherine Stone who has taken a new role and I would like to thank her for her hard work and support over the last 5 years. I would also like to welcome Marco - his role is to provide the secretariat, the events co-ordination function and he will be the point of contact for members.

The second year of the strategic plan has seen us co-ordinate and standardise the organisation of the Regional Groups and we now have a Trustee dedicated to supporting the Regional Group leads. Please do get in touch with your Regional Group lead; they welcome your input in to these events.

This year has also seen the launch of our new website which has received much positive feedback. However please do contact us with your thoughts on how we can enhance the content and make it work best for your needs.

In March this year we hosted a successful 1 day meeting entitled ‘Satiety: From Origins to Applications’ at UCL Institute for Child Health, in association with the SATIN and FULL4HEALTH EU Framework Seven projects. Also a successful collaboration was undertaken with Sterling Events, to organise the Obesity session as part of the Primary Care & Public Health 2015 20-21 May 2015 NEC, Birmingham. The session was well attended and evaluated positively.

Following the successful delivery of UKCO2014, our first 2 day conference in Birmingham, and spurred on by the positive comments by delegates and sponsors we held UKCO2015 on September 9-11th in Glasgow. Once again the high quality of the scientific programme was much commented on and this included a lively debate on the merits of Surgery vs Lifestyle interventions, member and sponsor-led symposia, oral sessions and posters. Also our first public engagement event was rated highly by members of the public and this is an area we wish to develop further within the ASO. The scientific quality was matched by the excellent social programme that included a ceilidh and a drinks reception hosted at the Glasgow Civic Centre. I would like to thank the local organising committee that included Dr Dilys Freeman and Dr Catherine Hankey (ASO Trustees), ably supported by colleagues at the University of Glasgow, for their excellent organisation of the meeting. We are now in the process of planning UKC2O16 and welcome your thoughts on making the meeting responsive to your needs. To this effect we will be undertaking a survey for you to inform us about what type of event would be most appealing.

As we proceed with the third year of our strategic plan, we are turning our attention to how we can best support networking and collaboration between members. In order to facilitate this our aim this year will be to establish networks for those working in adult or childhood obesity. So please watch this space!! If you have thoughts and ideas that you would like to share with the Trustees of the Association, do not hesitate to contact me, any of the Trustees or Marco Presutto in the ASO office.

Pinki Sahota