Meet the YouthBorders Team

Welcome to the YouthBorders full team page.   We are a small friendly organisation, currently with 5 members of staff (full time and part time) and a Board of 8 Trustees and Advisors.  We are all dedicated to the aims and vision of YouthBorders and passionate about making positive changes to the lives of children and young people and providing them with new and exciting opportunities.   Whether a volunteer worker or Trustee, a core or project staff member – we are all working together to support and facilitate the work of our members and to speak with one voice in the Scottish Borders, always bearing in mind our motto:  “Where young people come first.”

Susan Hunter

Chief Officer

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As Chief Officer I oversee the management and workings of YouthBorders, from line management to core skills around finance, PR, personnel, policy development, governance and strategy. I hugely value the way we all work together as a team and promote new and innovative ideas to support our members and young people. My key role is strategic representation – speaking as one voice on behalf of our members, youth work, the third sector and most importantly young people at a local, regional and national level.

Jemma Laidlaw

Operations Officer

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In my role I can help you with membership support, PVG guidance and ID checks, and training opportunities. I am the administrator for YouthBorders and deal with all banking and finance issues, daily correspondence and team support. I help manage the website and social media and also collate and send out the e bulletin each week filled with news, job opportunities, funding information and training courses. If you would like help or information about any of this please get in touch.

Kris Chapman

Engagement and Development Officer

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I am here to help support and develop your youth organisation, tailored to your local needs. I provide bespoke one-to-one support, meeting each member at their premises and gaining a first-hand understanding of the services provided. I am then able to help develop training programmes, identify funding streams, and support your strategic development as a youth organisation. Alongside this I support youth clubs develop their volunteer recruitment strategies and induction programmes to ensure volunteers gain the best experience possible whilst at the youth organisation.

James Mackintosh

Youth Music Forum Coordinator

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In partnership with LIVE Borders, YouthBorders set up a Youth Music Forum project Sound Cycle to develop the forum idea in the Borders and to build opportunities in music for young people across the region and beyond, whether in listening, participating, performing, awareness raising, workshops, skills, jobs or just pure enjoyment. As a musician and performer by profession I have been recruited and on 12 hours a week to develop and grow this ambitious project.

Johan Aitken

Project Coordinator - Stepping Stones

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Stepping Stones is a three-year project developed by the award winning Youth Work Partnership. It is designed to change the way opportunities and support are offered to young people across the Scottish Borders. My role is to help make this happen by ensuring effective governance and support of the project team, networking with key partners, measuring and evaluating the success of the project and organising any joint training identified by the project youth workers and young people themselves.

YouthBorders Board of Trustees

The Board of YouthBorders is made up of Trustees and Advisors taken from a broad spectrum of skills, interests, backgrounds and locations.   All are volunteers and we are very grateful for their time and commitment to the values and best practice of YouthBorders.   Some Trustees have been on the board for several years, others are fairly new but all work together to steer YouthBorders and provide the right environment and strategies for young people to thrive in the Scottish Borders.   The Board meets at Langlee or at members’ premises up to 10 times a year including an AGM in October each year.  The Board has a Chair, Vice Chair and Treasurer and a subcommittee on finance.

Board of Trustees

Chair – Colin Easton

Vice Chair – Jean Gray

Treasurer – Lorna Notman

Roger Barrow

Deirdre McKendry

Gary White

Sarah Axford

Debbie Whalley


Associate Trustees

Chris Dunning – Former Assistant Director of Youth Projects for the Rank Foundation