Our People

Meet the Future Voices Group

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Belle

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

What led you to be here today and prompted you to want to join the FVG?
A rollercoaster of a year, and a luckily placed instagram advert that finally made me think I had a chance of my voice being heard.

What are you up to now?
Studying chemistry A level and core maths as a year 14 (re-sat a year), and now getting to work with the FVG!

What is the most important thing in your life right now?
Making sure that no other young person has to go through the same experiences I have now, and in the future (and my cats!!).

What sort of changes do you want to be involved in making as part of the FVG?
Better access to fair and safe work for care kids/ care leavers- espcially those who have struggled with substance abuse, as well as young people who have SEN/ mental health issues"

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Catherine

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

What led you to be here today and prompted you to want to join the FVG?
I'm passionate about raising awareness of young people's mental health and wellbeing in employment, having had my own challenges with my mental health.

What are you up to now? (e.g. In work/study/looking for work/volunteering)
I'm in my final year of completing a 4-year degree apprenticeship, where I work for a large mental health charity whilst also studying my degree in Business Management (Social Change).

What is most important to you in your life right now?
I value working in an organisation where I can make a difference using my own experiences to help others, and connection with my family, friends and colleagues.

What sort of changes do you want to be involved in making as part of the FVG?
I'd like to advocate the importance of alternative ways of employment (e.g. apprenticeships, internships, T-levels) and making sure these are accessible to all young people.

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Charlie

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

I heard about the Future Voices Group through the Traveller Movement, a charity that I intern at. I had a look online to research the group and I decided that it would be a good opportunity for me so I applied.

Right now I'm studying and interning and I'm looking to find relative part time work.

The most important thing in my life right now is expanding my knowledge and experience in different things such as Business and Politics in a relatively short amount of time.

I would like to be involved in helping more young people become more conscious about politics and have them get involved

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Elijah

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

I'm Elijah and I'm currently studying A-level Psychology, Sociology and English Literature and hope to go on to university to study Psychology and Education. My goal is to work in Educational Research and tackle societal disadvantages people face while trying to access good quality education and how we as a society can improve the education system for all people. I am excited to work within the Future Voices Group to help tackle the youth unemployment struggle in the UK from its core, which I believe is education. I am extremely interested in the wider view and intersectionality of employment and how I can use my voice to advocate for marginalised communities most effected by these issues.

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Jasmine

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Too often, marginalised young people are excluded from meaningful employment or not appropriately supported whilst working.

Youth Futures Foundation's approach to tackling this issue - by integrating young people at the heart of their work - really resonated with me, as often young people are excluded from decisions that directly affect them. I am delighted to be involved in an opportunity to help empower and support young people like me.

After some time out after graduating university, I have started working as a Policy Assistant for the Green Alliance (an environmental think tank). I am also a Youth Engagement volunteer for the British Red Cross.

Having now completed my formal education, I want to continue learning from others and build more empathy and resilience, so that I can apply myself to meaningful causes and dedicate my time towards addressing social issues.

I want to be part of tangible, sustainable and intersectional change, to help shed light on and amplify the voices of those facing multiple barriers at once. I want to not only help remove barriers to employment, but also ensure that there is enough support in place that young people are able to retain the jobs that they worked so hard to secure.

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Jayden

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

I joined FVG to help bring about systemic change to lower the disparity in employability and education between certain groups in society.

I am currently studying Politics, History and Psychology at A-level and wish to go on to study Sociology and Social Policy at university.

I am a part of my local youth council and the BYC NHS Youth Forum as I believe there is not enough participation in social policy from young people; It is important that we engage with the world around us as we are the future.

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Jeff

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

What led you to be here today and prompted you to want to join the FVG?
I wanted to join the Futures Voices Group because I have a plethora of insights and real life experiences to share about my journey to finding employment. Hopefully I'll be able use my voice to represent others like me who need someone to speak up for them. The FVG is the perfect forum for listening and then taking action.

What are you up to now? (eg. In work/study/looking for work/volunteering)
I graduated in 2020. I've had a few roles since then, currently I work for a technology consulting company as a digital consultant. I'm interested in anything digital/product.

What is most important to you in your life right now?
Balance! Navigating life as a young adult and balancing all the challenges that comes with this is quite tricky. Being career driven, whilst also finding time for family, friends, hobbies is the key challenge I'm working on in right now.

What sort of changes do you want to be involved in making as part of the FVG?
I want to empower young people to influence the youth employment landscape. Often programmes built to help young people are created without the input of young people. The FVG looks to change this, and hopefully we can be an example to other decision makers across the country.

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Ladajah

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

I decided to join the FVG as having seen the barriers young people are facing when getting into employment and I wanted to help young people to concur these barriers and by joining the FVG I think I can make a meaningful change by giving my ideas to help identify and solve the issues currently faced by young people getting into employment.

I am currently in my first year at university studying law. The thing that is most important to me right now is learning new things and exploring new opportunities.

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Lauren

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

What led you to be here today and prompted you to want to join the FVG?
As a long-time proponent of youth advocacy, when i heard about the work of the youth futures foundation and the opportunities being offered, I knew i wanted to be part of brilliant team working to influence what is one of the most pressing concerns among young people today - being able to find stable, fulfilling, meaningful employment.

What are you up to now?
I'm currently working towards completing my environmental practitioner degree apprenticeship, studying part time at Kingston University whilst working within the construction industry.

What is most important to you in your life right now?
I'm working on living less out of habit and more out of intent. I've been coming back to my love of music and the arts, and I can often be found wandering round a gallery or old building somewhere, usually with a big mug of tea.

What sort of changes do you want to be involved in making as part of the FVG?
Supporting more young women into the workplace and making the apprenticeship pathway more accessible to all are definitely things that I would love to improve through working in the future voices group.

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Nedilson

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

I'm Nedilson Da Silva and I am passionate about education, bodybuilding, martial arts and helping other people. I'm in university right now doing my law degree on my way towards becoming a lawyer. I'm driven to give my time to help others, it makes me feel fulfilling and  complete. Always learning and working towards one day being able to fulfil my dreams.

Within the FVG, I hope to be able to make a real difference to the society, bring a light to those that believe everything is lost and bring awareness towards a problem that concerns not one but all of us and shape the decision making. Ensuring that less young people feel the need to give up from their dreams and the need of going in the wrong direction to get what they want due to their current circumstances.

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Obaida

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

One of the reasons is that I love helping others, also helping young people who are confused as I was one of them .

I study computer science at a College, I also work with KRAN (Kent Refugee Action Network) helping the young people.

The most important thing in my life is my family, especially mum and dad.

Help the young People to achieve what they want, and give them the support they need.

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Olivia

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

I am so glad to be part of the new FVG cohort! My passion for young people and their access to employability, education and empowerment is what has influenced my interest in the FVG. As I enter my second year of university studying history and politics, I am excited to explore the career options available in policy making and politics itself. This season of my life is about taking risks and ensuring that each day I am showing up as the woman I hope to be in 5 years. My aim as I join the FVG is to learn as much as possible from those around me, to challenge the status quo and to be honest throughout the process.

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Oscar

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

What led you to be here today and prompted you to want to join the FVG?
The experience of discrimination that myself and my peers face, as well as my interest in social movements and advocacy, made the FVG a really exciting opportunity for me. I was really interested in the opportunity to confront these barriers.

What are you up to now? (eg. In work/study/looking for work/volunteering)
I am a social sciences student at Lucy Cavendish College, University of Cambridge, and I volunteer for SHOUT's texting support service.

What is most important to you in your life right now?
My family, pursuing my education, and doing my part to make a positive difference for others.

What sort of changes do you want to be involved in making as part of the FVG?
Tackling the barriers to employment that young people face - particularly disabled and neurodiverse people who are disproportionately likely to face discrimination and poverty.

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Saffron

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

I was motivated to join the FVG because, as an autistic individual who has also struggled with mental health issues, I found that, upon finishing university, I faced numerous challenges in the world of work and employment. My past and current experiences have made me passionate about tackling the issue of youth unemployment, particularly in young people with disabilities. I also want to bring more attention to the incredible pressure young people seem to be under in modern society, which I think is one of the major contributors to the rise in mental health issues we have seen in recent years.

At the moment I am working full time, but I am also considering a potential career change. I also volunteer with Ambitious About Autism, the National Autistic Society, and Great Ormond Street Hospital, and regularly try to use my lived experiences to improve understanding and awareness of autism and eating disorders.

The most important thing in my life right now is to somehow make lasting change and help others who are going through similar struggles to my own. I feel strongly that so many people's talents go unrecognised and are overlooked because of a lack of support, and believe we need to create an environment where everyone has the opportunity to fulfil their potential, and lead a happy life.

While I am part of the FVG I really want to empower young people with complex mental health issues and disabilities. I want to be a part of creating an environment that allows a much more diverse range of individuals to thrive, in all aspects of life, rather than a culture that embraces a 'cookie cutter', 'tick box' approach.

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Samuela

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

What led you to be here today and prompted you to want to join the FVG?
The heavy emphasis on putting the first-hand experiences and opinions of young people at the forefront, allowing for the voices of young people to be far than tokenistic, as we are empowered to work on behalf of fellow young people facing the same barriers when it comes to unemployment.

What are you up to at the moment?
At the moment, I am studying at university

What is most important to you in your life at the moment?
Right now, my focus is on my studies, faith, and personal development

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Sulaiman

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

I applied to join the FVG because I am committed to helping young people from underserved backgrounds achieve their full potential. I am currently at law school. Gaining knowledge and skills that will enable me to serve others with increased effectiveness is an important goal currently. Through this role, I aim to contribute toward developing a holistic and comprehensive understanding of what constitutes a 'good' job for young people.

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Tyler

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Hello my names Tyler and I am a future voices ambassador.

I have committed to starting this important journey due to many reasons. First and foremost, i myself have Dyspraxia which is a learning disability.

This has motivated me to take on this role to show that people with disabilities can help just as much as someone without one and never let anyone tell you otherwise.

My sole purpose of doing this role is to be a voice for others who are struggling accessing employment as-well as people who have hidden disabilities.

I currently work in retail, proudly serving the local community with a smile and a friendly face. I am committed to my current job but truth be told, I would love to take a big role supporting others in need.

Finally, I would like to create awareness to these big topics and I really do hope more employers sign to the disability confident scheme to prevent discrimination and also discuss the disadvantages that people may face in regards to barriers to employment.

I would like to see a future where people are treated equally in all environments and increased employment with youth  and give them an equal opportunity to access employment and thrive within there chosen career or job

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Yi Kang

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

As someone who identifies as part of the BAME and international student community in the UK, I have lived experience struggling to secure a job myself, and understands the tremendous amount of stress and anxiety that comes alongside this process. Thus, just as many young ambassadors from FVG in the past, I am motivated to be part of the solution, and advocate for better, efficient, and meaningful solutions that tackles youth unemployment issues once and for all.

As a fresh graduate, I am going to start my first job working for SEO London as its Corporate Law Programme Coordinator, supporting outstanding candidates from BAME or social mobility qualifying backgrounds to secure a career in law. In the meantime, I am also actively volunteering for CIVICUS as its Youth Action Team Member, supporting and amplifying the voices of young people/youth-led organisations worldwide.

To me, being able to serve my community, alleviate the suffering of others; and at the same time to live a balanced and happy life would be some of my key priorities at the moment. I always believe that every action and step, no matter how small they are, could eventually play a major role in the creation of a better world in the future!

As part of the FVG, I am determined to gather and amplify the concerns and struggles young people face while seeking employment, and trying to live a better life within our society nowadays. Furthermore, by collaborating with lawmakers and various stakeholders, I look forward to proposing and advocating for significant policy changes in the country's youth employment policies – ensuring that they are truly inclusive and equal for all.

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Zac

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group
  1. Throughout education, the world of work was something that could feel very limiting to me. Whether it was down to the work I wanted to do feeling impossible or not having the confidence to pursue meaningful work. FVG is somewhere that wants to help improve this for people and bring more accessibility.
  2. I am currently in my final year of university studying music production.
  3. Getting enough rest and food and spending time with my friends and family.
  4. There's lots of media surrounding work being inaccessible for minority groups. However this rarely matches up with peoples lived experience of the world of work. As a trans person I believe that the change should come directly from these communities and we should recognise the damage when it doesn't.
Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

Zoya

Future Voices Group Ambassador
Future Voices Group

What led you to be here today and prompted you to want to join the FVG?
I wanted to join FVG since I felt the career advice in education wasn't effective.

What are you up to now? (eg. In work/study/looking for work/volunteering)
Right now I am volunteering and studying at sixth form.

What is most important to you in your life right now?
Focusing on balancing my work with home life, I am focusing on my relationships.

What sort of changes do you want to be involved in making as part of the FVG?
I want to inform young people on how to be confident in the workplace.

No team members match

Meet the Board

Non-executive Director
Board

Lauren Aird

Non-executive Director
Board

Lauren joins the Board having worked alongside us for nearly 2 years in her role as a Future Voices Ambassador. She currently studying social sciences and will attend University in September to study Youth Work & Community Development. Lauren is keen to bring positive change for young people, such as raising awareness of pupil referral units and supporting young people who are living independently.

Non-executive Director
Board

Ruth Busby

Non-executive Director
Board

Ruth Busby, is the HR Director at Great Western Railway (GWR), leading the people agenda with a focus on engagement, kindness, inclusion and diversity, and health and wellbeing.  Ruth is involved in a number of industry wide activities including Rail Wellbeing Live and the Women in Rail and RIA Equality Diversity and Inclusion Charter.  She is also co-Chair of Women in Rail South.

Ruth joined GWR in March 2018, from the Atomic Weapons Establishment, and held leadership roles in Higher Education, and the Civil Service, where she started her career in policy development.  A qualified coach, Ruth has a wealth of knowledge and expertise in employee relations, inclusion and diversity, leading organisational change, policy and employee reward.

Non-executive Director
Board

Julia Cleverdon

Non-executive Director
Board

Dame Julia Cleverdon DCVO CBE is a lifetime campaigner who has worked tirelessly to promote opportunities for disadvantaged young people. As  Co-founder of the #iwill campaign, Vice Patron of Teach First and Vice President of Business in the Community, she encourages collaboration among senior leaders from business, government, education and the most disadvantaged communities to build a more robust and sustainable civil society.

Non-executive Director
Board

Jess Evans

Non-executive Director
Board

Jess is an undergraduate student at the University of Cambridge, reading Psychology and Behavioural Sciences. She has worked with the National Citizen Service in various capacities since 2018 and is currently a member of their Youth Voice Forum, where she provides youth perspectives on company strategy and project design, most notably contributing to their employability service line and Kickstart packages. Alongside this, Jess volunteers as a mentor with several access initiatives at both a college and university level, to support pupils from underrepresented backgrounds through applying and adapting to higher education.

Non-executive Director
Board

George Greaves

Non-executive Director
Board

George joins us with a background in entrepreneurialism. He is dedicated to supporting personal development through mentoring. Having held a series of roles in education, training and skills development, he is now implementing strategies that are proven to create sustainable jobs and progress careers through mentoring-based networking, which has helped thousands access employment, apprenticeships, training and career opportunities. 

Non-executive Director
Board

Kris Murali

Non-executive Director
Board

Kris is an established senior leader with a breadth of financial, commercial and management experience spanning both the private sector and not-for-profit organisations. As Scouts Director of Finance and Resources he is responsible for the finance, HR, governance and legal teams. His oversight ensures appropriate financial control, people policies and governance so that Scouts can deliver its strategy to prepare more young people with skills for life.

Before Scouts, Kris served as Deputy CEO of the disability charity, Sense. He led the corporate support services including governance and the trading portfolio of 115 charity shops. He also served on the Board of Sense International, overseeing their operations in eight countries.

Kris has held Board positions in the UK and in the US, and is currently non-executive director at Youth Futures Foundation and Taekwondo Organisation Limited in the UK. He also serves as a Trustee at Sense Scotland and is on the finance committee of University of West London.

Non-executive Director
Board

Jenny North

Non-executive Director
Board

Jenny North is currently the Deputy CEO at Dartington Service Design Lab. Previously Director of Policy and Strategy at Impetus, she has also held positions at Relate, the Maternity Alliance, New Policy Institute and the Home Office.

Seyi Obakin OBE

Chair
Board

Seyi has been the CEO of Centrepoint, a charity focused on giving homeless young people a future, since 2009. He is passionate about ensuring young people, especially those who are on the margins, have the support they need to engage with education and training, and then get into, stay in, and thrive in employment. He was awarded an OBE for services to youth skills, employment, and homelessness in 2016.

Non-executive Director
Board

Laura-Jane Rawlings

Non-executive Director
Board

Laura-Jane Rawlings is the CEO of Youth Employment UK, the leading voice and expert on youth employment issues in the UK. Laura-Jane is a champion for youth employment and ensures the voices of young people are heard, providing insight and expertise to many groups such as the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Youth Employment, she sits on two ESF National Sub-Committees; Employment, Skills and Social Inclusion and Equality and Diversity.

Non-executive Director
Board

Carla Rossini

Non-executive Director
Board

Carla Rossini is the Director of Global Operations at The Leading Edge Alliance, and a former Finance Director at Johnson Matthey Plc. She is passionate about collaboration between businesses and communities.

Non-executive Director
Board

Simon Woolley

Non-executive Director
Board

Lord Simon Woolley is a political and equalities activist. He is the Founder and Director of Operation Black Vote, the Chair of the Advisory Group to the Race Disparity Audit and is a former Commissioner for the Equality and Human Rights Commission. Simon was knighted in the 2019 Queen's Birthday Honours list for services to race equality. He was made a life peer in October 2019.

No team members match

Meet the Youth Reference Group

Youth Reference Group member
Youth Reference Group

Caroline Appleton

Youth Reference Group member
Youth Reference Group

Age:  25
Location: Loughborough, East Midlands
Occupation: PhD researcher

Why did you join the Inspiring Futures Youth Reference Group?
To learn new skills and to support the work of some great charities.

What has been your highlight of being on the YRG so far?
Discussing how to make research findings interesting and accessible to young people

Youth Reference Group Member
Youth Reference Group

Josh Campbell

Youth Reference Group Member
Youth Reference Group

Age:  24
Location: Sunderland
Occupation: Trainee Solicitor

Why did you join the Inspiring Futures Youth Reference Group?
I saw this as an opportunity to share my experiences for the benefit of organisations who support young people gain employment. I have spent long periods unemployed and have had countless job rejections, so hopefully my insight can be useful.

What has been your highlight of being on the YRG so far?
Sharing meaningful ideas with my colleagues who I would not have got to meet had I not been a member!

Youth Reference Group member
Youth Reference Group

Louise Chandler

Youth Reference Group member
Youth Reference Group

Age:  19
Location: Buckinghamshire
Occupation: I have currently been on a gap year where I have been volunteering as a youth colleague at Barnardo’s and sat on the Youth Voice Steering Group at the British Youth Council. In September, I am going to be studying Education Studies at Buckinghamshire New University. 

Why did you join the Inspiring Futures Youth Reference Group?
Being a part of the Youth Reference Group (YRG) will allow me to shape the direction of the evaluation process of the Inspiring Futures Programme, whilst allowing me to develop industry-specific skills such as digital, research and evaluation. I am excited to gain invaluable experience and broaden my knowledge in this field, to transition into a policy orientated role in the future.

What has been your highlight of being on the YRG so far?
I had a limited understanding of evaluation before sitting on the advisory board, the YRG introduced me to how evaluation operates in practice. We brainstormed ideas on how to improve a variety of research questions that could be addressed. This narrowed our focus and gave us a better understanding of what research approach to take. Some methods included interviews and creating videos to explore the contribution made by the programme. I am excited for the future and keen to conclude whether young people were supported during the pandemic.

Youth Reference Group member
Youth Reference Group

Katie Douglas

Youth Reference Group member
Youth Reference Group

Age:  19
Location: Co Antrim, Northern Ireland
Occupation: I go to tech and I’m studying to get my Maths and English essentials skills

Why did you join the Inspiring Futures Youth Reference Group?
I joined the reference group because I think I would help disabled young people to get their thoughts and opinions across. As I have experienced bad moments living with a physical disability.

What has been your highlight of being on the YRG so far?
My highlight has been getting to know everyone and being part of the team.

Youth Reference Group member
Youth Reference Group

Nyasha Duri

Youth Reference Group member
Youth Reference Group

Occupation: Contractor - varied roles mainly within civic and big tech, Founder of Your Career Site, Writer, Creative, Trustee, Non-Executive Director

Why did you join the Inspiring Futures Youth Reference Group?
I joined the Inspiring Futures Youth Reference Group because I believe in doing as much as we can to make things better for our generation and the next with effective solutions to challenges. I love the respective missions of the Youth Futures Foundation and BBC Children in Need, plus their shared goal with Inspiring Futures to support young people to achieve their potential on their journey towards employment. I care about this because I have seen several others seriously affected, and experienced myself how difficult the job market often is. This is an unparalleled opportunity for important change ensuring all can thrive no matter their background.

What has been your highlight of being on the YRG so far?
A highlight of being on the YRG so far has been being inspired by getting to dive into everything further: whether through engaging discussions with insightful fellow members on which actions move the needle, excellent facilitation thanks to experts from Cordis Bright + beyond, learning about Monitoring & Evaluation and more.

Youth Reference Group member
Youth Reference Group

Anisha Rahman

Youth Reference Group member
Youth Reference Group

Age:  20
Location: London
Occupation: Student studying History, Politics and Economics BA at UCL

Why did you join the Inspiring Futures Youth Reference Group?
Being a part of the Youth Reference Group (YRG) will allow me to shape the direction of the evaluation process of the Inspiring Futures Programme, whilst allowing me to develop industry-specific skills such as digital, research and evaluation. I am excited to gain invaluable experience and broaden my knowledge in this field, to transition into a policy orientated role in the future.

What has been your highlight of being on the YRG so far?
I had a limited understanding of evaluation before sitting on the advisory board, the YRG introduced me to how evaluation operates in practice. We brainstormed ideas on how to improve a variety of research questions that could be addressed. This narrowed our focus and gave us a better understanding of what research approach to take. Some methods included interviews and creating videos to explore the contribution made by the programme. I am excited for the future and keen to conclude whether young people were supported during the pandemic.

Youth Reference Group member
Youth Reference Group

Fahmida Yasmin

Youth Reference Group member
Youth Reference Group

Age:  22
Location: Kent
Occupation: Third year student in the study of society and the communities which inhabit them

Why did you join the Inspiring Futures Youth Reference Group?
I initially joined the Future Youths Reference Group in hopes to gain an insight on what issues currently exist surrounding youth employment and to understand what is being done to better the situation of those affected.

What has been your highlight of being on the YRG so far?
Meeting everyone else in the group and hearing their perspectives based on personal experiences and opinions has definitely been the highlight of this opportunity! I thoroughly enjoy the group discussions. This is because I leave each of our sessions with a new outlook and in turn this role has had a positive impact on the way I engage with the material within my degree.

No team members match

Meet the Team

Directorate:
Director of Finance and Resources
Operations

Felix Adenaike

Director of Finance and Resources
Operations

Felix has worked in a variety of roles in the further education sector. He has been responsible for financial management, planning, audit and the wider corporate services. Felix has been involved in new business start-ups in the education and commercial sectors. He is passionate about lifelong learning.

Senior Grants Officer
Grants and Investment

Matthew Armstrong

Senior Grants Officer
Grants and Investment

Matthew supports the delivery of our Impact and Development grant programme. He has almost 10 years of working in the grant making environment working with people and communities to overcome challenges and realise their aspirations. Prior to joining Youth Futures Foundation he worked as a Grants & Awards Manager at the British Heart Foundation, and the National Lottery Community Fund in a number of roles across the grant lifecycle.

Analysis Manager
Impact and Evidence

Andrea Barry

Analysis Manager
Impact and Evidence

Andrea is an enthusiastic analyst, interested in improving data infrastructure on underserved communities. Before this, Andrea was a Senior Analyst at the Joseph Rowntree Foundation. She has finished a PhD in Economics at the University of York.

In July 2020, Andrea gave evidence to the Women and Equalities Committee on the unequal impact of coronavirus on ethnic minorities. Andrea has also appeared on EuroNews, Bloomberg Radio, and in print to discuss issues related to employment and groups.

Head of Evidence and Evaluation
Impact and Evidence

Jane Colechin

Head of Evidence and Evaluation
Impact and Evidence

Dr Jane Colechin is a social researcher with a decade of experience working on high profile labour market, education and welfare reform evaluations and studies. Jane has particular expertise in theory-led evaluations and ensuring co-design is part of evaluation and programme delivery and ensures that rigorous and youth-informed principles are used in all of YFF’s evaluation and evidence processes.

Head of Strategy and Partnerships
Strategy and Innovation

Anna Darnell

Head of Strategy and Partnerships
Strategy and Innovation

Anna shapes and delivers our organisational strategy by leading our stakeholder management and connecting insights to find solutions to drive systemic change. Key to this is developing our relationships with youth and youth employment organisations, public bodies, Government departments and employers. Anna is also driving forward Youth Voice, ensuring young people are at the heart of everything we do. Prior to Youth Futures, Anna worked in youth policy for central government, as well as in a range of frontline, policy and research roles in the charity and voluntary sector. Anna has been involved in youth and community initiatives from a young age, and outside of work she volunteers to support children and young people.

Relationship Manager
Grants and Investment

Michael Duncombe

Relationship Manager
Grants and Investment

Michael is a Relationship Manager for the Connected Futures Fund supporting the local partnerships Connected Futures are investing in to tackle some of the wider systemic issues young people face within youth employment services.

Prior to joining Youth Futures Michael worked for a G15 housing association project managing a plethora of social and economic investment projects aimed at improving the lives of local people in the Hackney and Barnet boroughs of London.

Senior Participation Officer
Strategy and Innovation

Talia Dundoo

Senior Participation Officer
Strategy and Innovation

Talia joined the Research team earlier this year where she worked on ensuring that the voices and interests of young people affected by inequality and discrimination in employment were well represented in research.

She has now moved over to the Strategy team as Senior Participation Officer, working on meaningful youth participation across Youth Futures Foundation.

Prior to joining YFF, Talia worked for a youth democratic engagement organisation and completed a Masters in Race, Media and Social Justice.

Policy and Public Affairs Officer
Strategy and Innovation

Angel Fletcher

Policy and Public Affairs Officer
Strategy and Innovation

Angel is a Policy and Public Affairs Officer who is passionate about widening access and equal opportunity. She supports the delivery of our policy strategy and works with other youth employment organisations and young people to champion breaking down barriers to education, training and work. Before joining Youth Futures Foundation, Angel supported policy, research and communications at the Sutton Trust, most notably in collecting data for the Social Mobility Commission’s Elitist Britain 2019 report and leading on social media campaigns. Most recently, she supported young people from low- and middle-income backgrounds to explore American higher education at the US-UK Fulbright Commission. Breaking down the barriers marginalised young people face accessing education, training and employment is a matter close to Angel’s heart. Outside of work, she loves musical theatre and mentoring.

CEO
Strategy and Innovation

Barry Fletcher

CEO
Strategy and Innovation
Head of Grants
Grants and Investment

Gillian French

Head of Grants
Grants and Investment

Gillian sits within our Grants & Investment team and leads the development and improvement of our grant making processes and systems. She brings a wealth of knowledge and experience having managed UK wide grant programmes throughout her career in the charity sector, working with the Prince’s Trust, The Wildlife Trusts and more recently CITB. Outside of the office, Gillian enjoys learning piano and long walks with her family in the countryside.

Senior Grants Officer
Grants and Investment

Aron Fulton

Senior Grants Officer
Grants and Investment

Aron supports our grant holders with the delivery of their grants, enabling them to deliver high quality, impactful projects. He manages a varied portfolio of grant holders, with a particular focus on the Infrastructure programme. Aron began his career in Accounting and Finance, before moving to grant making with Leeds Community Foundation.

Director of Impact and Evidence
Impact and Evidence

Chris Goulden

Director of Impact and Evidence
Impact and Evidence

Chris leads our Impact and Evidence team. Previously he was Deputy Director of Evidence and Impact at the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, where he has worked as Head and Deputy Director of Policy and Research, since joining the organisation as Poverty Programme Manager in 2003. He previously served as a policy analyst with the Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit and Senior Research Officer at the Home Office. He was a member of the Social Security Advisory Committee for 10 years from 2012-22.

Relationships Manager (Connected Futures)
Grants and Investment

Megan Haskell

Relationships Manager (Connected Futures)
Grants and Investment

Megan is a Relationship Manager for the Connected Futures Fund, she supports partnerships that Youth Futures is investing in to address the need for structural change in youth employment services.

Before joining Youth Futures, Megan worked in local government specialising in employment and skills. Her roles included project and relationship management on various employment initiatives in Birmingham, both city wide and at a neighbourhood level. Most recently she worked on delivery of a large scale European Social Fund/Youth Employment Initiative project in Birmingham and Solihull.

Finance Officer Apprentice
Operations

Charlie Howard

Finance Officer Apprentice
Operations

Charlie is involved in the operations and every day running of the business to help support with the processing of transactions in the company to ensure that we meet our financial obligations as a charity. He helps support the management of accurate data including the grants sector to ensure that we are in-line with our predictions mentioned in our business plan and are on track with the budgets set out each year. Charlie is also involved in a steering group with partnerships for young London – supporting many aspects of careleavers – including employment.

Senior Policy Manager
Strategy and Innovation

Ryan Howsham

Senior Policy Manager
Strategy and Innovation

Ryan is responsible for developing and delivering influencing strategies that will help Youth Futures to engage policymakers – pushing our mission to narrow employment gaps for young people from marginalised backgrounds up the agenda and working constructively with others to make the case for compelling policy solutions. Ryan joined Youth Futures in April 2021, working as Strategy Manager until taking his current role as Senior Policy Manager at the end of 2022.

Before joining Youth Futures, Ryan worked in local government, most recently making the case for further investment into Greater Cambridge as part of the local City Deal, and developing approaches to deliver sustainable economic growth, including responding to the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Director of Engagement (Interim)
Strategy and Innovation

Phillipa Hunt

Director of Engagement (Interim)
Strategy and Innovation
Governance Coordinator
Operations

Nkechi Ijeomah

Governance Coordinator
Operations

Nkechi has spent most of her career in the voluntary and higher education sectors, most recently as the administrator for a professional body for internal auditors in higher education. Nkechi is passionate about good governance and the difference that can make in organisations and is keen to continue her journey of working with Boards, Committees and senior leaders and the learning that goes with it. She is really excited to be part of Youth Futures Foundation’s mission to make a difference in the lives of young people.

Evidence and Evaluation Manager
Impact and Evidence

Vera Stiefler Johnson

Evidence and Evaluation Manager
Impact and Evidence

Vera Stiefler Johnson has experience in designing and implementing research and evaluation projects in social service settings across the United States and England. Prior to joining YFF, she worked in the Research & Evaluation Center at Children’s Institute in Los Angeles, managing research and evaluation projects for mental and behavioural health interventions, family support services, early childhood services, and community innovation programmes. She is interested in participatory study design; data synthesis and visualisation; and linking theory, research, and practice towards the goal of improved design and delivery of social services and policies.

Connected Futures Lead
Grants and Investment

Dan Jones

Connected Futures Lead
Grants and Investment

Dan Jones leads Connected Futures, Youth Futures’ place-based programme aiming at whole system change. Prior to joining Youth Futures, he established the Centre for Ageing Better’s first programmes, including place-based approaches to employment in Greater Manchester and community transport in Leeds. He has a long track record in innovation and systems change in the UK and internationally.

Evidence and Evaluation Manager
Impact and Evidence

Alice Kedge

Evidence and Evaluation Manager
Impact and Evidence

Rosie's role and interests:

  • Particularly interested in the dissemination and implementation of learning, why I work in evaluation
  • Managing a portfolio of evaluations across multiple workstreams at YFF (not sure if you call them workstreams but like Infrastructure, WW and CF)
  • I have worked in the charity sector for the majority of my career and before that, education
  • Outside of work, I like reading and listening to music (pretty standard) and rewatching Friends & Modern Family – feel like my knowledge of these things must be close to unmatched but not sure I want that challenged!
Grants Officer
Grants and Investment

Danielle Keeling

Grants Officer
Grants and Investment

Danielle is a Grants Officer here at Youth Futures, responsible for supporting the delivery of our What Works and Connected Futures Programmes. Danielle is also a staff champion for our Future Voices Invest Sub-Group, and a member of our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Committee. Danielle has a background in business development and finance having spent three years at one of the ‘Big Four’ accounting firms, Ernst & Young (EY). Danielle is extremely passionate about supporting young people to develop key skills and transition into meaningful employment and has worked and/or volunteered with a number of frontline delivery organisations such as: The EY Foundation, The National Citizens Service, Princes Trust, Childreach International, The Chartered Management Institute, The Duke of Edinburgh Award, Young Enterprise and more.

Head of Marketing and Communications
Strategy and Innovation

Helen Knox

Head of Marketing and Communications
Strategy and Innovation

Helen leads the creation and delivery of our marketing and communications strategy to grow our organisational influence and impact. Previously, Helen worked at the West Yorkshire Combined Authority as Head of Marketing. Her recent work includes coordinating the #4sparks campaign to attract Channel 4’s National HQ to Leeds, and marketing FutureGoals, the region’s flagship careers inspiration and support initiative.

Senior Evidence and Evaluation Officer
Impact and Evidence

Amanda Mackey

Senior Evidence and Evaluation Officer
Impact and Evidence

Dr Amanda Mackey is an evaluation researcher with experience in qualitative and mixed-methods research. She has particular interest in questionnaire design and focus groups. Prior to joining Youth Futures Foundation, she worked with STEM Learning on evaluating the STEM Ambassadors programme, and with Family Fund, a charity that supports families raising disabled or seriously ill children and young people. Her doctoral work focused on evaluating the goals and milestones of gender equality in English cathedral choirs. Outside of work, Amanda is a hospital volunteer with the Royal Voluntary Service, and a roller derby on-skates referee.

Evidence and Evaluation Manager
Impact and Evidence

Jane Mackey

Evidence and Evaluation Manager
Impact and Evidence

Jane is a mixed methods researcher with nearly ten years’ experience working in research and evaluation. At Youth Futures Foundation she is responsible for managing the evaluation of a portfolio of funded projects and exploring what works to support young people into employment. Prior to joining Youth Futures Foundation, Jane worked as the lead evaluator at Good Things Foundation (a digital inclusion charity) and spent 6 years working in the market research industry. Outside of work Jane enjoys running, getting out into nature, and is a keen Olympics enthusiast.

Team Coordinator
Impact and Evidence

Tony Maher

Team Coordinator
Impact and Evidence

Tony has a background in data and systems management in charity and international development contexts. He supports the delivery of our Evaluation and Research grants and coordinates the Impact and Evidence Team.  He also has an interest in collecting punk vinyl and likes to think his record collection is unparelled.

Partnerships Manager
Strategy and Innovation

Annum Mahmood

Partnerships Manager
Strategy and Innovation

Annum is a Partnerships Manager with an interest in stakeholder engagement and collaboration. Annum supports the delivery of our Youth Futures Foundation Strategy with a particular focus on developing relationships with youth employment organisations, public bodies, employers, Government departments and young people. Prior to joining the Youth Futures Foundation, Annum worked on key initiatives such as Erasmus+ and the European Solidarity Corps helping to shape and deliver programmes, projects and partnerships. Annum has a passion for breaking down barriers that exist in marginalised young people accessing educational and employment opportunities and outside of work actively volunteers for local charities and community organisations.

Company Secretary
Operations

Moira Malcolm

Company Secretary
Operations

Moira joined YFF in October 2021 and has oversight of our governance and legal functions.

Moira has a background in law and international law and has spent her career in the charity sector.  Her focus, for the last 15 years, has been on charity governance.  Moira has worked with a variety of domestic and international charities at a senior level.  Many of these roles have extended beyond governance and her experience includes responsibility for legal and compliance functions.

Research Officer
Impact and Evidence

Alison McIntyre

Research Officer
Impact and Evidence

Alison is a research officer supporting several of our evidence reviews, writing on the youth employment toolkit, and supporting various projects across Youth Futures.

In her previous role, Alison was a Youth Programme Coordinator for the National Citizenship Service in London. Her focus was on the delivery of employability skills sessions, particularly for young people with additional support needs.

Before that Alison did her Masters in Humanitarianism and Conflict Response at The University of Manchester. Her dissertation explored the efficacy of cash-based humanitarian interventions targeting young people.

Head of People
Operations

Lisa Metcalf

Head of People
Operations

Lisa is our Head of People, who’s role is to shape and lead Youth Futures Foundation people agenda and culture by ensuring systems, processes, people and business operations are in place to enable the organisation to deliver its strategy.

A CIPD Level 7 HR professional with over 20 years progressive experience of working in both operational and strategic roles across a range of sectors, but predominantly within the not-for-profit sector. Lisa joined Youth Futures Foundation from a community and adult education charity based in Leeds and has run her own HR consultancy company since 2012.

In her spare time Lisa is the Chair of Governors at a Leeds based inner-city primary school and has a passion to ensure that children have access to high-quality learning to secure an adult future that is wholesome, positive, and rewarding.

Evidence and Evaluation Manager
Impact and Evidence

Hannah Murphy

Evidence and Evaluation Manager
Impact and Evidence

Hannah manages evaluations of our funded programmes to provide evidence of effective approaches to support young people into meaningful work. She is a social researcher with experience in theory-led evaluation and participatory approaches. Prior to joining Youth Futures Foundation, Hannah was a Research Manager at Learning and Work Institute where she conducted research and evaluation projects spanning labour market, welfare reform and skills policy.

Team Coordinator (Grants and Investment)
Grants and Investment

Rosie Ogunseye

Team Coordinator (Grants and Investment)
Grants and Investment

Rosie is a team coordinator working across both the Grants and Strategy & Innovation Teams. She has over 14 years of youth work experience in a variety of settings and holds a BA(Hons) and Postgraduate Diploma in Youth and Community Work. Alongside working at Youth Futures Foundation she leads youth sessions and holds positions as a Council Member for the Institute of Youth Work, a Trustee for The Door Youth Project, and is part of the steering group for In Defence of Youth Work.  Prior to YFF, Rosie spent a year elected as Students’ Union President at Newman University, Birmingham.

Head of Grants
Grants and Investment

Lekan Ojumu

Head of Grants
Grants and Investment

Lekan oversees the delivery of our ‘What Works’ grant programmes. His career, prior to joining Youth Futures Foundation, includes experience within a leading social investment fund, grant giving with a focus on young people and capacity building support. In his spare time Lekan has held charity Board positions and is currently involved as a trustee for a local youth focused organisation based in London.

Business Support Executive
Operations

Charlene Orr

Business Support Executive
Operations

Charlene is working as the Business Support Executive, providing operational support to the whole Youth Futures Foundation Team. Prior to this, she worked in the charity and non-profit sector and has experience in office management, executive support and human resources. Outside of work, Charlene practices music and art and volunteers at a local church.

Director of Grants and Investments
Grants and Investment

Matthew Poole

Director of Grants and Investments
Grants and Investment

Matthew leads the development and delivery of our grant making programmes. He brings a wealth of experience and expertise having built his career on working with people and communities with the National Lottery Community Fund and establishing Talent Match. Outside of the office, Matthew is committed to supporting and coaching young people and is heavily involved with local youth work in the West Midlands.

Senior Evidence and Evaluation Officer
Impact and Evidence

Emily Preston-Jones

Senior Evidence and Evaluation Officer
Impact and Evidence

Emily sits within the Impact and Evidence team, managing evaluations of our funded projects and examining what works to support young people into employment. She is driven by the goal of equal opportunity and is especially interested in what keeps young people in meaningful work, ensuring that workplaces are inclusive for all. Emily has a wide range of research and evaluation experience, from working with food redistribution charities through to people living with Dementia, she gravitates towards projects that have a positive impact on society.

Relationships Manager
Grants and Investment

Louise Rands

Relationships Manager
Grants and Investment

Louise supports the development and delivery of Youth Futures Foundation’s grant making programmes. She has been working within the not-for-profit sector in Birmingham for almost 10 years, most recently working at a local infrastructure organisation. Her roles included contract and strategic relationship management for various programmes including a £6million Ageing Better programme and a strategic support and development programme for civil society organisations in Birmingham.

Team Coordinator (Engagement)
Strategy and Innovation

Lauren Reeder

Team Coordinator (Engagement)
Strategy and Innovation

Lauren is a Team Coordinator for the Engagement Team. She loves being organised and helpful and has previously worked in PA jobs, most recently at a property investment company. In her personal time, she enjoys doing charity work. She has raised £20k by organising various fundraising events, and visited North Africa to carry out charity work at children’s hospitals, schools and women’s refuges. She also enjoys big walks and spending time with family and friends.

Senior Grants Officer
Grants and Investment

Andy Richardson

Senior Grants Officer
Grants and Investment

Andy is a Senior Grants Officer, supporting the delivery of Youth Futures’ Impact and Development grant programme. With a background in commercial and corporate banking followed by 14 years’ experience of providing and managing grants and loans in the VCSE sector, he joins us from the Architectural Heritage Fund where he headed up its social investment team for 10 years. Away from work, he enjoys creative writing, reading Russian literature, and waiting for Grimsby Town Football Club to start winning again.

Head of Research and Impact
Impact and Evidence

Anna Round

Head of Research and Impact
Impact and Evidence

Anna Round is Head of Research and Impact at the Youth Futures Foundation. Her research experience includes extensive work on education and skills, regional labour markets and economies, and young people’s issues. Before joining YFF she worked at IPPR North, after over a decade as a researcher in higher education and in government.

Finance and IT Manager
Operations

Ravinder Sangha

Finance and IT Manager
Operations

Ravinder is our Finance & IT Manager, with over 20 years’ experience at Senior Manager level in Finance, covering all aspects of Finance functions.  Previously working in the Public/Third Sector, having worked for Charities, Social Landlord(s), and Local Authority.  Ravinder has implemented various systems, and processes to enable the delivery of rewarding work undertaken by frontline staff and partners, in the easiest and most efficient way.  Ravinder is also a Trustee of a small local Youth & Community centre.

Marketing and Communications Executive
Strategy and Innovation

Reena Staves

Marketing and Communications Executive
Strategy and Innovation

Reena is a communications creative with an interest in developing accessible content. She supports the delivery of our marketing and communications strategy. Prior to joining Youth Futures Foundation, Reena worked to influence mental health policy, welfare support and wellbeing initiatives in Scotland and England; as part of the Scottish Government’s flagship campaign ‘Think Positive’, and as Sheffield Students’ Union’s Welfare Officer. She also has an interest in audio production and has an unmatched knowledge of Desert Island Discs.

Media and Communications Manager
Strategy and Innovation

Jodie Tipper

Media and Communications Manager
Strategy and Innovation

Jodie is the Media and Communications Manager at Youth Futures Foundation. In her role, Jodie is responsible for increasing awareness for Youth Futures, and its work, through a communications strategy and media relations.

Before joining Youth Futures, Jodie worked at a Birmingham-based PR agency, where she led on both strategy and delivery for clients across industries including arts and culture, hospitality and organisations in the third sector.

In her spare time Jodie volunteers for Let’s Feed Brum, supporting at its Monday night soup kitchen, and assisting with social media and marketing. She also volunteers as a mentor to students and graduates at Birmingham City University.

Research Manager
Impact and Evidence

Peter Traynor

Research Manager
Impact and Evidence

Peter is Research Manager in the Research and Impact team and will manage a diverse portfolio of work. A mixed methods researcher Peter has over fifteen years of experience in academia and the third sector. His most recent research has explored initiatives focused on crime and youth crime, funded by among others the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, the Nuffield Foundation and the Ministry of Justice. In 2017 he completed an ESRC funded PhD at the Centre for Criminal Justice Studies at the University of Leeds, for which he explored why some young people carry knives. In his spare time Peter likes to exercise and visit the cinema.

Senior Analysis Officer
Impact and Evidence

Zach Wilson

Senior Analysis Officer
Impact and Evidence

Zach is an analyst, who is passionate about bettering the employment outcomes for marginalised youth. In conjunction with his role at YFF, he is completing a PhD in Economics at the University of Birmingham.

Zach has been involved in labour market research, both in the economics and commercial sectors.

No team members match
Skip to content