Biddy joined Fresh Start in December 2016 and brings with her 20 years’ experience of working with people who have experienced homelessness and working with volunteers in the third sector. She is passionate about people and being part of an organisation that lives its values in all of the work that it does. She is responsible for the day to day management of the organisation.
Gary has been a Trustee since August 2007 and took up the position of Chair of the Board in April 2021. Gary is the Managing Director of Marketing Concepts, an Edinburgh based marketing company who help Fresh Start with marketing strategy and materials. Gary initially came to Fresh Start as a befriending volunteer in 2005 when he was looking for a volunteering opportunity with a local charity. Fresh Start’s aims really resonated with him, in particular, the idea of helping people who have experienced homelessness, as it could happen to any of us. He was delighted when he was asked to join the board, a position he gladly accepted.
Michael has been a Trustee since February 2014 and has a professional background in the life insurance industry. Taking early retirement in 2008, Michael is a qualified actuary and has worked at all levels in the insurance industry up to, and including board membership. His commercial experience is mainly finance-focused but as a Board member, he has also had to deal with other areas of business including HR and legal issues. Michael has been a member of the Scottish Episcopal Church from a young age and started playing the organ at 13. As a volunteer, he has played the organ and run church choirs all his life and is currently the musical director of Christ Church, Morningside. Michael was first introduced to Fresh Start through his church and is very aware of the fragmentary benefit and support systems available to those less fortunate. He fully supports the efforts that Fresh Start and other charities undertake to support those who are struggling to build a home for themselves.
Allan has been a Trustee since October 2015. Now retired, Allan qualified as a Doctor in 1971 specialising in Obstetrics and Gynaecology and became a consultant in 1981 working in Edinburgh and in 1995 moving to the Borders General Hospital. An Elder in the Church of Scotland he was first introduced to Fresh Start through his church’s involvement in starter pack collection. He was nominated to be his church’s denominational director which he was delighted to undertake as he is concerned about the plight of the homeless and sees Fresh Start as a very caring organisation trying to help the homeless settle into their new home and make it a home.
Sabina has been a Trustee since May 2018. Sabina has vast and varied experience working in public relations and communications. For seven years, Sabina worked as the Senior Media Officer at housing and homelessness charity, Shelter Scotland, working on the delivery of their communications. Sabina is currently an associate partner at Charlotte Street Partners and is looking forward to sharing her public relations expertise with Fresh Start.
Morag has been a Trustee since September 2017 and is a Partner with Burness Paull LLP based in their Edinburgh office. Morag has practised as an employment lawyer for over 18 years. She is keen to support the work being carried out in Edinburgh to help people transition from homelessness to a position where they have a permanent home and an opportunity to secure employment and a safe life for them and their families. Morag became aware of the work of Fresh Start through a work colleague and was keen to join the Board.
Louise has been a Trustee since October 2018. Louise has been in the charity sector in Scotland for over 12 years, working in development and fundraising roles. She has worked for large, national organisations as well as local Edinburgh charities. Louise wanted to give something back and help Fresh Start as a smaller charity with limited resources using the experience and knowledge she has gained working in the sector over the years.