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Chair of the Board Kids Inspire

This is an opportunity to lead the Board of a rapidly growing children’s mental health charity, significantly impacting the lives, mental health and well-being of our children and young people through the provision of award-winning mental health services. Play your part in leading Kids Inspire as they grow in scale and geography and further their impact.

  • Location: Essex and Suffolk (with meetings in Chelmsford)
  • Salary: Reasonable expenses paid
  • Closing date: Monday 10th June

Who we are.

Kids Inspire was founded in 2007 by our Chief Executive, Sue Bell OBE, to fill gaps in mental health provision for children and young people. Today, Kids Inspire has a track record of success, providing specialist mental health services for children, young people and families.

We have a highly ambitious executive team and an engaged board of trustees. Together, we are determined and driven to make a sustainable difference in the lives of children, young people, and families by ensuring they get the support they need to recover from trauma and thrive.

We provide a range of therapeutic and community services which are suited to each child’s needs. Our holistic specialist services empower children, young people and their families affected by trauma or negative experiences to make positive choices and reclaim their lives.

Our services are informed by the latest developments in research and practice of neuroscience, trauma, and therapy. We believe the best outcomes are achieved when the adults around the child are included in the support, keeping the child at the centre.

Uniquely, therefore, since our inception we have provided ‘family inclusive’ specialist services to children and young people affected by negative experiences or trauma. This approach is one of the critical differentiators that enable us to make a positive impact in young people’s lives.


We are experiencing ever-increasing demands for mental health support. As a society, we are navigating post-pandemic challenges alongside the cost-of-living crisis and its effects.

The global uncertainty puts pressure on everyone, and we know children and young people are sensitive to the well-being and emotional capacity of their parents and/or adults who care for them.

Alongside this, we have seen an increase in the complexity of how our young people present and what concerns them. We need to ensure young people have access to support as we face an emerging and growing mental health crisis.

We know that children and young people from disadvantaged backgrounds have, on average, weaker social and emotional learning skills at all ages than their peers. This is linked to poor mental health, lower academic attainment, and poorer employment outcomes. However, evidence suggests that developing social and emotional skills can improve young people’s lives.

A recent partnership with Impetus who supports and funds ‘high potential charities,’ has enabled us to reflect on and refine our theory of change and create a rigorous and robust strategy for the next three years of growth. The partnership also gave us access to pro bono support from Bain and Company who pressure-tested our strategy and created a comprehensive implementation plan which is already underway.

We work across Essex and are rapidly growing into Thurrock and Suffolk, with ambitious plans to continue to grow sustainably and have a bigger impact on the lives of children and young people.

We are on the cusp of our next stage of development, from local charity to countrywide provider, and, as we embark on our new business plan, this is a great time to join and lead our board as Chair.

Our new Chair

As our current Chair, Simon Carpenter, is due to step down later this year, we are looking for a new Chair to lead our board at this pivotal time of growth, scaling and development for our organisation.

Our new Chair will:

  • Bring governance experience and strong commercial acumen, with entrepreneurial experience in scaling and growing organisations.
  • Together with our Chief Executive, Sue Bell, help to develop and drive our strategy, creating a bigger impact.
  • Have experience leading organisations through growth and change and bringing a business focus.
  • Understand the distinctive culture of the charity sector.
  • Challenge and support to our board and executive team alongside a strategic, open, calm, diplomatic and inclusive approach.
  • Join our ambitious and engaged board and collaborate with the executive team to ensure our organisation grows sustainably.
  • Share our vision and values and have a passion for supporting children’s and young people’s mental health and well-being.

We want to ensure that all voices are heard across our organisation, and our Chair will work closely with our Chief Executive and team to ensure that young people are at the core of how we work.

Time commitment

The Board meets every other month for two hours in the evening, online and/or in person. We may consider moving this to quarterly meetings, and we also have a strategy planning day in the year with the executive team.

We expect the time commitment for the Chair to vary. On average, we would expect the equivalent of circa two days a month, spread across various activities such as preparation for board meetings, reading board papers, regular conversations with the Chief Executive, ad hoc discussions with board members and the executive team, and attending events throughout the year.

For further information about the role, or to arrange a confidential discussion, please contact our advising consultant at Peridot Partners:

Jennifer Horan | jennifer@peridotpartners.co.uk | 07519 070497


If you would like to know more about this role please contact Jennifer Horan

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About us

Our mission

To provide holistic specialist services to young people and their families affected by trauma or negative experiences that will help them to reclaim their lives and prevent the need for adult services in the future and to replicate those services throughout the UK.

We support young people aged 4-18, who are socio-economically disadvantaged, have mental and emotional health needs that mean they are disengaged from learning, family relationships or peers.

We work to achieve sustained improvement in social and emotional skills, healthy relationships with family and peers, improved engagement with and appropriate progress in learning.

We do this by 1:1, dyads and group therapeutic support for young people and their families, training of the support network surrounding the young person, and step-down support.

Supporting the child, and by approach, their family, to reclaim their lives and empower them to make positive choices is one of the critical differentiators that enable us to make a positive impact in young people’s lives.

Our approach

With each child we meet, we look and listen to how their past affects their present, reviewing closely the whole system revolving around them – school, family, peers. Alongside, we look at negative childhood experiences to make our practice trauma informed, addressing the causes and the symptoms.

Our qualified, experienced therapists have been trained in a broad range of orientations (psychodynamic, CBT, integrative, attachment-focused, expressive arts and systemic) and work creatively to encourage body/mind reconnection, focusing on the strengths of the child and the family to build and nurture resilience.

Information from the child and family is gathered during a detailed assessment to create a bespoke package of therapy (individual, couples, family), coaching, mentoring or group work befitting of the child at the centre of each case – one size does not fit all.

Our values

  • Specialist: Professional and accredited approaches to therapy.
  • Holistic: Providing a full suite of therapeutic and inclusive treatments.
  • Passionate: Keeping young people at the centre of our work.
  • Supportive: We care no matter the issue, background or context and are fully committed to promoting diversity in all we do to make real and lasting change.
  • Committed: Persevering through the challenges.
  • Collaborative: Working with the wider community to ensure the best outcomes.

Our ethos

Our culture keeps our vision, mission, and values at the centre of everything we do.

We are committed to investing in our staff to ensure they can provide a service of excellence to our children, families and the wider community.

We value our staff and their unique experience and training.

We strive to treat them with respect and to support them in the work they do with children and families.

Our services

Kids Inspire provides mental health and trauma recovery support for children, young people, and their families. Through a range of therapeutic and community activities, we promote resilience, self-awareness and relationship-building to empower more positive life choices.

Each case has a child at its centre (92% are 5-15 years old, 7% 16-18) and receives a bespoke package of support consisting of one or more of the following:

  • Creative Arts Therapies: including Drama, Integrative Arts, Music, Dance & Movement, and Play
  • Trauma Resolution Therapies: including Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR), Children’s Accelerated Trauma Treatment (CATT), Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy (DDP), Theraplay, Somatic Experiencing (SE) and NeuroAffective Touch
  • Family Therapy: delivered in dyads or groups, including dyadic and systemic approaches.
  • Other Talk Therapies: Including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Transactional Analysis and Psychodynamic Counselling
  • Groups: CREW, Balance Me, Sing My Own Song/Make My Own Music, NVR

All our therapists are trauma informed and empower individuals to change patterns of behaviour that they have developed to survive stressful, adverse and/or traumatic experiences. To address somatic symptoms and the physiological impacts of trauma, therapists work creatively to encourage service users to reconnect their body and mind through the stages of the recovery journey:

  • Stabilisation and Regulation: grounding/resourcing/orienting/developing a mind-body connection
  • Mobilisation: completing incomplete trauma responses/discharging survival energy
  • Resolution and Integration: meaning making/future templates/self-regulation and co-regulation

    To access a full job description and application details,
    please fill out the form below.


    Thank you for your interest in this role. Please download the Role Description and Person Specification.

    To formally apply, please submit a CV and supporting statement (ideally maximum 2 sides of A4 each) that clearly outlines your suitability for the role against the criteria provided in the person specification, including your interest and motivation in applying for this position.

    Please ensure that your application is emailed to response@peridotpartners.co.uk inserting “Application: Kids Inspire – Chair of the Board” into the subject field. You will receive an acknowledgement on receipt of your application within 2-3 days. If you do not receive an acknowledgement, please make contact with our admin team.

    For further information about the role, or to arrange a confidential discussion, please contact our advising consultant at Peridot Partners:

    Jennifer Horan | jennifer@peridotpartners.co.uk | 07519 070497

    As a sector-leading executive search consultancy, we know the importance of creating recruitment processes which are fair, inclusive and free from bias. We are committed to promoting equality and diversity and developing a process that values differences.

    If you have a disability that meets the definition set out in the Equality Act 2010, and you can show that you meet the ‘essential’ criteria described in the person specification, please let us know.

    If you experience any technical or accessibility difficulties, need help making an application, or have any additional support that needs to be considered as part of the interview and selection process, please let us know.

    Recruitment selection processes are based on evidence of competence stated in the person specification and in relation to our values.


    Closing date: Monday 10th June
    Candidates informed of outcome: By Friday 14th June 2024
    Interviews: TBC

    Please note, we are in the process of confirming interview dates. As soon as we have this information, we will update here and inform all who have already applied.

    Equal Opportunities Monitoring

    Peridot and Kids Inspire are committed to promoting equality and diversity. To help us raise awareness and support a culture that is diverse and recognises and develops the potential of all, we need to appreciate the profile of candidates who apply for positions. We will send you an equality monitoring survey at the point of receiving your application, in the interview phase and at the time of placement. This ensures that our processes remain inclusive and equitable throughout, and provides us with important data to help us showcase our impact. The information will be treated confidentially and anonymously and will help us to support our commitment to fair recruitment practices. All information provided will be held in the strictest confidence and will not be shared with anyone, in line with the Data Protection Act 2018. The information provided does not form part of the decision-making process and will not affect your application.

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