Interim chief appointed at LGBTQ+ homelessness charity

Shan Nicholas is the temporary successor to Tim Spoor, who stepped down in November after 17 years

Shān Nicholas

Akt, the LGBTQ+ youth homelessness charity, has appointed an interim chief executive to replace its former chief, who resigned in November after nearly 17 years in post.

Tim Spoor was chief executive of the charity, formerly the Albert Kennedy Trust, since 2007, having worked in LGBTQ+ charities for 25 years in total.

Announcing his resignation in November, Spoor said he was leaving to have “a little rest time for self-care before I look for my next challenge in the sector”. 

Shān Nicholas has been appointed as interim chief executive as the charity seeks a permanent replacement, and will start in the role on 8 February.

The charity said it had started recruiting for a permanent chief executive and expected a new leader to take up the role towards the end of the year.

Nicholas has led 17 charities as interim chief executive, most recently at the social care charity and provider Autism at Kingwood.

She has also held this role at Parkinson’s UK, Independent Age and Drinkaware.

Her other roles have spanned a range of charitable sectors, including social housing, social care, mental health, children’s and older people’s services, criminal justice and the refugee sector.

Rob Malcomson, chair of akt, said: “I know Shān will be a real asset as we look for a permanent CEO to lead the fight against youth homelessness, which disproportionately impacts LGBTQ+ youth.”

Nicholas said: “I am passionate about the work of the organisations I join, all of which have a common thread: that of social exclusion, inequality, deprivation and a fundamental unfairness in the lives of the people these organisations exist to support. 

“It is unacceptable that 24 per cent of homeless youth currently identify as LGBTQ+, made homeless because they face homophobia, transphobia and abuse.”

Akt, which was founded in 1989, provides services to LGBTQ+ youth aged 16-25 across the UK, including housing interventions, financial support, mental health interventions and interventions relating to education, employment and training.

The charity’s latest accounts filed with the Charity Commission show £2.4m in income for the financial year to the end of March 2023, against spending of £2.7m.

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