Introducing the British Youth Council's Board of Trustees...

The British Youth Council's Board of Trustees is a group of 13 young people aged 25 and under who are elected by our members at the Annual Council Meeting each year. As the British Youth Council’s lead representatives they are responsible for guiding the strategic direction of the charity.

Anna Rose Barker


Anna is a young, enthusiastic and thoughtful person determined to make an impact on society through the positive engagement of young people and leadership opportunities. Anna has previously been a Member of UK Youth Parliament, Chair of Dorset Youth Council, Leader of AIESEC (the largest youth-led organisation in the world) and National Programmes Executive at The Prince's Trust helping disadvantaged young people back into education, training or volunteering. Most recently Anna has been living in Zimbabwe working with young people and the local community, and on her return she has started working for a leading Education Technology company called Unifrog. Last year she was the Vice Chair of Participation and is very excited and honoured to be leading this year as Chair of the British Youth Council.

Lewis Addlington-Lee

Deputy Chair

Lewis is originally comes from a village near Clacton-On-Sea in Essex. Having graduated from the University of Birmingham in July 2017, he is now working in a political role at the Local Government Association. Before joining the Trustee Board and becoming Deputy Chair, Lewis was the lead delegate to the British Youth Council for the Scouts. In this role he wrote and presented motions on issues such as outlawing LGBTQ Reparative Therapies and the legal recognition of non-binary gender identities, as well as working on BYC governance with other National Members. Outside of BYC, Lewis is part of a team that leads on social action for the Scouts with their 'A Million Hands' project and is passionate about mental health and issues facing the LGBTQ Community.

Luke Thornton


Luke Thornton is a trainee accountant at one of the largest accountancy firms in the world, specialising in the energy industry. He grew up in Cheshire, studied engineering and business studies at the University of Warwick and completed a placement year as an accountant in Aberdeen. He has been on the board since 2015 and, when he's not in a spreadsheet, can be found supporting young people to develop through volunteering or entrepreneurship. Luke is a passionate traveller, theatre goer and foodie.

Larissa Kennedy


Larissa Kennedy, 19, was elected to the Trustee Board in September 2017. She is passionate about intersectional feminism and anti-racist activism. Barclays featured Larissa at Number 63 on the 2017 edition of their ‘Future 100’ List of the most influential women at UK universities. Her experience in governance, strategy development and advocacy largely comes from the international development sector: she is the UK’s Representative to the Global Secretariat at Youth For Change. This is a Plan International supported project that works on gender-based violence, currently focusing on FGM and child marriage. Larissa is also an active member of Girlguiding, working on membership growth and retention, campaigns and ambassadorial endeavours on behalf of its London & South East region. Larissa is currently reading Politics, International Studies and Hispanic Studies at the University of Warwick and is President and Co-President of the University’s anti-racism and anti-sexism societies respectively.

Robert Cashman


Robert was elected to the Board of Trustees at the 2015 Annual Council Meeting. He has been a member of the Scout Association, one of the British Youth Council’s national member organisations, for over ten years. Since 2011 he has volunteered as an adult member of the Association, both as a leader and, since 2014, as a member of a UK-wide working group developing and delivering a community impact strategy. Robert graduated in 2015 with a degree in theology, and then spent a year as a full-time students’ union officer at the University of Cambridge. He now works in higher education. Outside of his work with the British Youth Council, Robert is also a trustee of the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education, Chelmsford and District Scout Council, and West London District Scout Council.

Mariam Inayat Waseem


Mariam joined Oldham Youth Council in 2011 and soon after was elected a member of UK Youth Parliament. Her experience in youth voice locally, regionally and nationally, lead to her participation in a variety of international conferences. Mariam has now represented the UK at 13 conferences in 8 different countries. She has been invited to represent young peoples views on various issues at European Parliament (EYE 2014 and 2016) and the Council of Europe (29th & 30th Session of Congress). Some issues she is passionate about include youth participation, holocaust education, human rights education, promoting the UNCRC, women’s rights and minority rights. In March 2016, she worked with the Council of Europe on a toolkit to foster inter-religious dialogue in local communities across Europe. She represented the views of young Muslims by speaking on the Governments Prevent agenda and radicalisation at a local level. Currently, Mariam is at Newcastle University studying Government and European Union Studies with Spanish.

Frankie Smith


Frankie is an Auditor working within a Global Accounting Firm. A graduate of Mathematics from Sussex University, Frankie was appointed to The Board of Trustees in 2017. Frankie is also a member of The Scout Association, currently sat on their Finance Sub-Committee as well as Deputy UK Youth Commissioner. Through this work Frankie supports Managers in Scouting between the ages 18-25 specifically surrounding their Training and Induction. Frankie has previously been a Trustee for East Sussex County Scout Council and has close ties to projects in Kenya empowering Young People through Scouting. Outside of work and volunteering, Frankie enjoys swimming and baking.

Lawrence Thompson


Lawrence was elected to the British Youth Council Trustee Board in September 2016 after having previously sat on the Student Minds Steering Committee and Leeds University Union Activities Exec. Lawrence is a University of Leeds alumni, achieving a BA in Philosophy and Politics in 2015. Also starting in September 2016, Lawrence enrolled on the Civil Service's Fast Stream programme, specialising in Project Delivery. His first year will be spent at the Department of Transport. His previous work includes working for the thinktank Reform, working as a Junior Consultant in a Ugandan SME working in the renewable energy sector and has held various roles within the National Citizen Service powered by The Challenge. Lawrence is particularly interested in Mental Health and accessibility in addition to organisational management.

David Crone


David, aged 19, is from Sunderland - known mostly for its struggling premiership football team. David is currently studying History and Politics at Oxford University. He first got involved with youth advocacy eight years ago, and has been working for social justice and championing children's rights since. David tends to focus on gender equality, health, education and citizenship and international development. When not campaigning or learning, I'm often found eating (literally anything), talking (lots) and laughing (loudly).

Sarah Staples


Sarah was elected to the board in September 2016.

Joe Stockley


Joe Stockley is Cardiff University alumni as of 2017, obtaining a 2:1 in Ancient History and Religious Studies. He has volunteered for several years in the Welsh charity sector, undertaking the Uprising programme, and working for WCVA in Cardiff. He became the Chair of Student Representatives in his final year, winning two awards for his work. With the British Youth Council he was the UK Ambassador for Wales, representing the UK’s young people nationally and internationally, and is now enjoying his first year as a trustee with BYC's board. He has worked alongside Google on Social Action and involving young people, and has chaired a variety of national events and summits, promoting young people, the good they can do, and they voice they have. He was recently awarded a Fellowship for the Royal Commonwealth Society, and is has written for the Guardian on several occasions.

Abigail Ashmead


Abby was appointed to the Board of Trustees in October 2017. She graduated from the University of Birmingham in July 2016, with a First Class Honours degree in Political Science and Philosophy and currently works as an Executive Consultant at Harris Hill Charity Specialists, providing advisory, recruitment, and management solutions to Chief Executives and Board members in the Charity Sector. She has a longstanding commitment to young people and youth engagement having been extensively involved with young carers’ organisations from a very early age and having also previously worked as a community facilitator on the National Citizen Service powered by The Challenge. Outside of her work with the British Youth Council, Abby is also a delegate on the Patchwork Foundation, which seeks to promote, encourage and support the active participation of young adults from under-represented and minority communities in British democracy and civil society. Abby is also particularly interested in Mental Health, Women’s Rights and Global Human rights.

Amanda Chetwynd-Cowieson


Amanda was appointed to the British Youth Council Trustee Board in October 2017 after having previously chaired the trustee board of Falmouth and Exeter Students' Union, where she was also the elected SU President. Amanda is a Falmouth University alumni, achieving a BA in Photography in 2015 and spending a significant amount of time running the University fundraising society. After two years as President of the Students' Union in Cornwall, Amanda went on to found and run a campaign aiming to put young people's voices at the forefront of the Brexit negotiations, as well as sitting on the trustee board for the National Union of Students. Amanda is particularly interested in work campaigning to end child poverty in rural areas and helping young people engage with politics in new ways.