Could you give your time and skills to support young people in Swindon?

By Anita Jaynes on 17 November, 2021

New Non-Executive Directors are being sought to support The Platform Project and join its board as it seeks to help more young people in Swindon who are at risk of unemployment. 

Based in the Dorcan area of Swindon, the community interest company (CIC) is seeking hands-on professionals and business owners with a passion for inspiring and empowering young people. 

The current board is run by local leaders, business owners and professionals, who use their skills, experience and contacts to help manage the organisation’s rapid growth and ensure that governance processes are followed appropriately. 

The Platform Project’s new directors will be expected to be hands-on for about two half days a month and ideally come from an education, business or enterprise background.

Sadie Sharp, Founder of The Platform Project, said, “We are looking for two or three non-executive volunteer directors to join us and support our mission to reduce the number of young people who are not in the workplace.

“Having been a management consultant before launching The Platform Project I’ve worked with a lot of boards and c-suite professionals and I am privileged to say that ours is one of the most functional, supportive and friendly boards that I’ve ever worked with. Their help and input have been critical to our success.”

Current directors include James Phipps, a philanthropic local entrepreneur and former chairman and CEO of Excalibur; Jon Joyce, director of Metro Bank, Swindon; Andy Langley, CEO of tech firm Ntegra and employment law solicitor, Cerys Ashley of Baker Ashley, South Wales. 

Each incumbent has a three-year tenure in a director’s role and vacancies are now available due to its expansion and following the resignation of former director Andrew Wells of Swindon Borough Council due to a job change.

Chairman James Phipps said, “It’s great to be able to work with a non-profit that’s making such an incredible difference in the lives of local young people. The Board has a really strong commercially strategic mix of skills and it’s great to see how we’ve directly been able to influence and support the strategic direction of the project to help to achieve its ambitious growth goals.”

Now in its fifth year, the Swindon social enterprise bridges the gap between education and employment by preparing young people for work. The CIC works with a range of funders, schools and employers to support target groups of young people.

The organisation also has a strong commercial element. The team works with a number of different schools to diversify the school’s curriculum. They also work with employers to help them find work-ready, entry-level talent.

Sadie, added, “We’ve grown so quickly since we started four years ago. Our big picture, long-term goal is to see if we can build our model into a social franchise, repeating our successful approach in other geographical areas. 

“We are getting there one step at a time, but we would love to hear from you if you think you can help us get there a little bit quicker.”

The team are particularly interested in those who can offer support around finance, marketing, strategy, education, and local authority commissioning and are committed to developing a diverse doard, so welcome applications from a wide range of backgrounds.

If you are interested in finding out more visit: www.platformproject.co.uk/workwithus. The closing date is 5pm on Friday 26th November 2021.

Pictured above: Sadie Sharp Founder of The Platform Project and James Phipps, current Chairman of the current Board of Directors.