Football Beyond Borders unveils new Chair

Matt Stevenson-Dodd has been appointed Chair of Trustees at Football Beyond Borders. Matt takes over from interim chair Richard Wheeler after Lekan Ojumu completed his three-year term as chair in late 2019. 

Matt joins FBB at an exciting stage of our journey as we seek to grow our programmes nationally and realise our ambition to become one of the leading charities in the UK for disengaged young people. 

Matt was previously CEO of Street League, the UK’s leading sport for employment charity, from 2010 to 2018. During this period Street League grew rapidly, with an average 42% growth in impact every year and 24% annual growth in income - from 2 cities and 25 staff in 2010 to 14 cities and 140 full time staff by 2016, changing the lives of thousands of young people every year. Matt is now founder and Managing Director of Trust Impact, a consultancy which helps third sector organisations stand out and build trust with funders, staff and beneficiaries by being more transparent about the impact they make.

FBB’s mission is to support young people from disadvantaged backgrounds who are passionate about football but disengaged at school to help them finish school with the skills and grades to make a successful transition into adulthood. 

Commenting on his appointment, Matt said,I am delighted to be appointed chair of Football Beyond Borders (FBB). The next few years will be immensely challenging for all young people and if we are to build a stronger society post Covid we must work harder than ever to ensure no-one is left on the side-lines.

FBB has an incredible track record of engaging young people aged 12-16, living in the most disadvantaged communities, harnessing the power of football together with the right mix of therapeutic support, youth work, skills and education to help them stay in school and achieve great GCSE results.”

During the 2019-20 academic year, 98% of participants on their programme finished the year in school. While 78% of programme graduates achieved a Level 4 or above in their English and maths GCSEs.

In 2020, FBB were announced as winners of the Social and Environmental Impact category at the Sports Industry Awards, and received the Centre for Social Justice’s Education Award. 

Matt said, “I’ve been fortunate to work with a range of organisations that use sport to change lives throughout my career and I am so inspired by all that Jack and Jasper have achieved as joint CEOs and founders.

I really believe their innovative use of football can reach beyond the borders of the pitch to unlock talent in every classroom. So I’m looking forward to working with them, the board and the whole FBB team to transform life chances for young people right across our country.”

Jasper Kain, Co-Director of FBB, said, “At a time when the demand for our work is greater than ever and young people need consistent support, we are delighted with Matt’s appointment as chair. He brings ambition and a wealth of experience and expertise in running highly effective national charities. 

He is a great leader, listener and innovator who has a real passion for changing the lives of young people. His skills and experience will be integral to guiding us to deliver our new strategy in what we know will be a tough external climate over the coming years, ensuring that we can continue to be right there for thousands of young people across the UK.” 

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