Youth charities to merge

Two youth charities will complete a merger early next year that will result in a new organisation with a turnover of about £1.5m a year.

The north London-based Centre for Youth Impact and YMCA George Williams College, which is in Whitechapel, east London, hope to complete the deal in the spring. They aim to ensure there will be more practitioners to support young people.

YMCA GWC said the decision to merge was primarily driven by a shared vision as opposed to financial need, and there would not be any redundancies as a result of the process.

The combined annual income of both charities will be nearly £1.5m.

Neither organisation owns any property and YMCA GWC said discussions were still underway about what the name, branding and strategy of the new organisation would be.

Bethia McNeil, chief executive of the CYI, will lead the combined charity as chief executive.

Lindsay Sartori, chief executive of YMCA GWC, has already left the organisation.

McNeil said: “Young people need quality relationships with practitioners with the right skills, right knowledge and understanding of what matters.

“In coming together, we will better meet this need by embedding insight into practice.”

Martin Houghton-Brown, the chair of the Centre for Youth Impact, who is also the chief executive of St John Ambulance, will become the chair designate of the merged charity’s new, combined board.

Keith Bendall, chair of YMCA George Williams College, said: “We recognise that training and support for the sector needs to adapt, shift and change to meet demands in our society and the needs of the workforce.

“This new chapter celebrates our rich legacy and secures a bright future for our mission to develop practitioners committed to evidence-informed relational practice.”

YMCA GWC said both charities were still finalising due diligence and legal preparations for the merger, including engagement with the Charity Commission, which should be concluded by the end of March.

It said it was also still engaging with its network of members and stakeholders as plans were finalised for the combined charity.

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