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.

Sarah Staples

Chair

Sarah, 22, started her youth voice journey in her hometown of Plymouth where she joined her local youth cabinet at 16. Serving two terms with the UK Youth Parliament as a Deputy and then Member of Youth Parliament she campaigned for votes at 16, a living wage for all and curriculum for life amongst other key issues. She was proud to continue her time with the British Youth Council in 2016 when she was elected to its trustee board. Sarah studied Politics with Law at the University of Plymouth, where she focused her studies on civil society and women in electoral politics. She founded and then chaired a society to bring together women and non-binary students to connect with local women in industry to provide talks, training and opportunities to help them after their time at university. An active campaigner, Sarah has spent time on political campaigns both in the UK and the United States where she’s volunteered on multiple races including the Clinton campaign. In 2017, Sarah began working for her local Member of Parliament and in 2019 made the move from the far South West to London where she works for an MP. Sarah is passionate, vocal and active on issues she cares about; social justice, youth empowerment and women’s rights.

Osaro Otobo

Deputy Chair

Osaro Otobo joined the British Youth Council as a Trustee in October 2020.

Kira Lewis

Trustee

Kira, from Somerset, is currently studying BA War Studies at King’s College London. They were elected as a Trustee after serving in the UK Youth Parliament’s Procedures Group, and twice as a Member of Youth Parliament. Alongside their British Youth Council role, they are also a Trustee of a large theatre and arts company in Devon, and was previously a Governor of one of the UK’s largest FE Colleges. They are currently working alongside their studies on a campaign to increase the number of young people on charity trustee boards across the UK.

Natasha Johnson

Trustee

‘After facing adversity in my own childhood I made it my life’s work to become a conduit for positive social change. I started by studying Sociology at the University of Westminster, undertaking primary research for my dissertation, which looked at the challenges urban youth face in their transitions into adulthood. Post-graduation I began working in the Philanthropy team at the national children’s charity ‘The Children’s Society’, originally working as an Officer developing and running the small Trusts and Foundations programme. In January 2020 I was promoted to Relationship Manager and now specialise in building strategic partnerships with large philanthropic funders. I strongly believe that every young person deserves a fair chance in life, irrespective of the background and experiences. I work collaboratively across the charity sector to make this a reality. The causes I am particularly passionate about are mental health, women’s rights, support for young refugee and migrants and bridging the wealth gap’.

Becca Moore

Trustee

Becca Moore is originally from Newcastle in North East England. She was elected to the board in 2019, however, her youth voice journey with BYC started in 2013 when she joined North Tyneside Youth Council. She served four years as a Member and then Steering Group representative of the UK Youth Parliament during which she won multiple awards for leading a mental health education campaign which she later presented in parliament. She was elected to the NHS Youth Forum twice where she campaigned for better awareness of young people’s rights in healthcare, then vice-chaired the Youth Select Committee inquiry into body image which she later presented this to the Science and Technology Select Committee. Becca was also a delegate to the Commonwealth Youth Forum in 2018, where she represented young people’s views in more global conversations and has volunteered with WE Charity in the UK and India. Throughout these roles, Becca has campaigned on issues like climate change, mental health, Votes at 16 and poverty. Alongside studying History at UCL, she also works as a Special Support Assistant supporting young people with additional educational needs at a high school in North Tyneside. Becca is passionate about young people from all backgrounds being represented and having their voices heard. She is committed to continuing to support young people to find their own voice.

Zara Khan

Trustee

Zara was elected to the board in September 2019. She is from the West Midlands and works for a Local Authority where she is currently completing a Project Management Apprenticeship. Her role includes managing various diversity and inclusion projects as part of a Central Government funded pilot Integration Programme. Zara was previously Chair of the Youth of Walsall, a local Youth group in Walsall, and led on the 'Real Knives, Real Lives' Campaign which won the Police and Crime Commissioners Community Thank You Award. She was also a Senior Child Sexual Exploitation Champion for Street Teams, a charity that supports children and young people abused through sexual exploitation. She is currently a Referral Order Panel Member for a Local Authority, which includes supporting young people who have committed a crime to agree a contract of work that they will complete in order to repair the damage caused. In 2020, Zara was announced as a Finalist for the BAME Apprenticeship Awards in the Charity, Voluntary and Public Services category. She is passionate about youth voice and empowerment and enjoys speaking to young people about her apprenticeship experience. In her free time, she can be found reading a good book.

Cormac Savage

Trustee

Cormac represented South Down in the UK Youth Parliament from 2018 until his election as a BYC Trustee in October 2020 and, while in the role, won two Paul Boskett MBE Awards for speeches given from the front and back benches at the annual UKYP House of Commons sitting. Cormac is the founder and current President of the Secondary Students’ Union of Northern Ireland (SSUNI) and sits on its governing board, alongside two leading academics, to ensure student representation at all levels of the organisation. He led SSUNI in its successful inaugural campaign, ‘Trust Our Teachers’, calling for the use of teacher assessed grades at A Level and GCSE in 2020 following the use of an unreliable algorithm. Cormac is in his final year at school studying French, Spanish, Politics and English at A Level. A recipient of the Rotarian Youth Leadership Competition, in 2019, he travelled to Strasbourg to represent Ireland in the EU Parliament. Cormac has won a YAFTA in the ‘Inspirational Young Person’ category and a Michaela Foundation Wings Award.

Tom Clark

Treasurer

Tom joined the BYC Board as Treasurer in September 2019. Currently studying Social Science at Edinburgh Napier University, he is also Deputy Chair of the Alec Dickson Trust and Trustee at Edinburgh Napier Students' Association. Tom is passionate about giving young people a voice regardless of skills, strengths, experience or background, and enjoys working with the BYC as it forges new opportunities for people across the country. Outside of studying and volunteering, Tom is sports fan, and particularly enjoys playing and watching football and cricket.

T.Jay Turner

Trustee

I joined the Oldham Youth Council at the age of 14 and have been involved in local, regional and national youth voice organisations. I was elected as a member of UKYP in 2015 and have held positions on Youthforia’s steering group. I was the youth representative for Voluntary Action Oldham - proactively conveying the interests of young people in the charity’s decision making process – and finance lead for the Oldham Youth Council’s ‘Kerrching’ funding stream.

Joe Seddon

Trustee

Joe Seddon is the Founder & CEO of Zero Gravity, a digital social enterprise which mentors students from low-income backgrounds into the UK’s best universities. Launched from his bedroom in West Yorkshire, Joe has grown Zero Gravity from a student bedroom startup into one of the UK’s leading social mobility organisations. He has been named as one of the Top 10 Young Digital Leaders in the UK by Lloyd’s Bank, and has been recognised with a social impact award by Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Joe is passionate about social entrepreneurship and using digital technology to solve social problems. He has lectured on the topic of social entrepreneurship at the Cambridge Union, and has spoken at universities and conferences across the UK. He is a frequent commentator on social mobility and higher education issues, and has featured on BBC News, Radio One, and Times Radio, amongst others. Joe graduated from Oxford University in 2018 with First Class Honours in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (PPE), and whilst at university freelanced for The Telegraph as an Education Columnist. He was appointed as a Trustee of the British Youth Council in October 2020.

Aimee Castle

Trustee

I am a creative dynamic individual who has a passion for developing remarkable corporate partnerships that are built on shared purpose and vision. I have vast experience of delivering large scale, strategic and profitable partnerships at Girlguiding, Missing People and The Rainbow Trust Children’s Charity. I believe young people should be able to shape their own future, whatever their background. And that it is the diversity of thought and opinion, that will generate a better, brighter and stronger world. I will be able to utilise my fundraising experience to help the the British Youth Council diversify income and maximise its potential.

Sila Ugurlu

Trustee

Sila Ugurlu joined the British Youth Council as Trustee in October 2020.

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