From education to employment

ThinkForward Appoints Ashley McCaul as New Chief Executive

Ashley McCaul, Chief Executive, ThinkForward

ThinkForward is delighted to announce the appointment of a new chief executive. Ashley McCaul joins the charity following a rigorous selection process and started in post on Monday 19th November.

Ashley is an experienced leader who has held senior positions in the not-for-profit and education sectors for over 20 years. She is a strong advocate and ambassador for social mobility and is passionate about transforming the lives of disadvantaged young people.

For the last 13 years, Ashley has led the charity, London Skills for Growth, a post 16 education provider with bases across East and South East London. 

As someone who benefited from support, high quality careers advice and vocational learning early in her life, Ashley is incredibly passionate and committed to ThinkForward’s vision.  She brings with her a wealth of experience of engaging directly with young people, headteachers and employers and an in-depth knowledge of the post-16 landscape.

Ashley said: “I was drawn to working for ThinkForward because of its strong reputation for supporting young people to make positive transitions into employment through its unique coaching model.  I am really excited about leading ThinkForward onto the next stage of its development.”

Charlie Green, ThinkForward’s chair said:

“The trustees are delighted with Ashley’s appointment and believe this is a very significant step in the growth of ThinkForward. Under Ashley’s leadership ThinkForward will continue to develop its work on transitioning young people into employment and the various range of post 16 education options.”

ThinkForward runs two long-term coaching programmes. They both have the common goal of supporting young people who are at high risk of unemployment to progress into sustained work. In 2018 we will be supporting just over 900 young people.

Our ThinkForward programme works with hard to reach, disengaged young people in Tower Hamlets and Islington in London, Nottingham and Kent. We established in London in 2011, expanded to Nottingham in 2016 and set up in Kent in 2017. ThinkForward has coaches in 18 schools, six in each location.

DFN MoveForward works in London, Kent and the West Midlands with young people who have mild to moderate learning disabilities with the aim of supporting them into sustainable paid employment.  These young people face massive challenges around getting into the workplace.

Just 6% of adults with a learning disability known to their local authority in England are in paid work, according to the government’s Health and Social Care Information Centre (now NHS Digital) in 2015.

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