New appointment brings more frontline business experience to homelessness charity’s board

(from left) Bertie Hunt (Chair, Y People), Derek May (CEO, Brightwork) and Joe Connolly (CEO, Y People)
(from left) Bertie Hunt (chair, Y People), Derek May (CEO, Brightwork) and Joe Connolly (CEO, Y People)

One of Glasgow’s oldest charities has continued a period of development and growth with the addition of Derek May, CEO of Scotland-wide recruitment business Brightwork, to its board.

Since 1824, Y People, formerly YMCA Glasgow, has been providing help to the most vulnerable in Scottish society. The charity has adapted to reflect the changing needs of society and is focused now on helping vulnerable groups and individuals who access its wide range of supportive services.

Derek, a qualified accountant whose extensive experience with blue-chip organisations in the transport, business services and manufacturing sectors, has been instrumental in securing Brightwork’s extensive engagement with highly-effective corporate social responsibility (CSR) programmes.

Alongside his co-directors at Brightwork he has spearheaded a series of CSR campaigns, most recently the Living Wage initiative as well as the partnership with Stronger Together, a UK-wide drive to root out modern slavery; not least, he has helped steer Brightwork, an award-winning recruitment agency, to year-on-year profitability and a current turnover in excess of £30 million.

Joe Connolly, CEO of Y People, said: “Derek is a most welcome addition to our board. He has a wide range of business experience and, more importantly, his values match ours.

“An effective charity depends upon the twin pillars of strong and consistently held values alongside a robust business model that adapts to circumstance. Derek will bring strength to those pillars and I think his appointment will soon be acknowledged as creating a perfect match.”

Y People offers a range of services including homelessness support, both in outreach to disaffected young people and the provision of supported accommodation across Scotland, after-school care, and youth and family counselling.

The charity also provides peer mentoring for young people who are leaving the care system as well as help and advice to those who have been through the same experience.

Derek said: “I believe strongly in successful business people giving back where they can and when the opportunity arose to contribute my time and experience to a charity that does outstanding work for those young people who need a hand, I was eager to be involved. I look forward to supporting Y People in the many positive things we can do.”

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