Georgina Keatley – Co-founder and CEO: Georgina has been working with former offenders since 1997. For many years she worked for the Foundation Training Company (FTC) initially as a tutor, working with female prisoners teaching life skills, citizenship, literacy and numeracy. She was promoted to manager and initially ran the FTC project at HMP Highpoint, then at HMP Edmunds Hill (as it was called at that time). She set up and ran FTC’s community project in Hackney, working with offenders and ex-offenders. After this, she worked for the London Borough of Newham as a key worker, which involved intensive outreach work with people newly released from prison and their families. She then worked for hyh, a young people’s homeless charity, as an AIM worker (advice, information and mediation) and worked with young people who were homeless or at risk at homelessness during the early crisis stages. After that she worked for the Prison Reform Trust, a campaigning organisation, as an advice and information officer. She has also run a family farming business for four years on a part time basis. She has a BA and an MA, both from the University of East Anglia and a teaching qualification. Georgina is also a fellow of the School for Social Entrepreneurs.
Tim Melvin – Co-founder and General Manager: Tim also worked for the Foundation Training Company, initially as a tutor but within 12 months he had found his niche as a resettlement worker with FTC and began setting up tailored support packages centred around the individual needs and issues of those about to be discharged from prison. He was promoted to manager of the HMP Edmunds Hill project, stepping into the role vacated by Georgina as she left to set up the Hackney project. Joining Nacro as a housing information advice and support worker he covered staff absences in eight prisons across the region concentrating on securing suitable and sustainable accommodation for prisoners’ release. After a year based in HMP Highpoint as employment, training and education worker he became cluster manager in 2012. Directly managing the housing and employment, training and education teams in HMP/YOI Littlehey, HMP Bedford and HMP Wayland, he also oversaw outcome performance and quality in the Nacro housing teams in prisons across the Eastern Region. Tim has a level three qualification in Information, Advice and Guidance, a basic skills teaching qualification and he is also a Fellow of the School for Social Entrepreneurs. He is also a very keen beekeeper.
Robin Ashenden – Director: Robin has an advisory role with THIS. He is founder and editor of Central and Eastern European London Review (ceel.org.uk). He has an MA in Soviet Travel Writing and worked for several years as a travel journalist (Sunday Times Travel, Wanderlust & the Guardian), specialising in Central and Eastern Europe. In 2009, he received a writer’s award from the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust to travel in and write about the post-communist countries of Central Europe. He produced Chornobyl 30, a one-day event at London’s Frontline Club, including screenings, readings, music and a discussion panel, to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the Chornobyl Tragedy. His experience of Eastern and Central European cultures is very helpful to THIS and he also has decades of experience of teaching English to speakers of other languages.
Lewis Woolnough – Director. Lewis is a hugely experienced teacher, now retired. He is a published author on microscopy with a particular interest in bees. He was Tim’s beekeeping mentor when Tim began keeping bees. A gentleman, of not insubstantial wisdom, who regularly chairs THIS directors’ meetings.