- Richard FrazerDirector, ChairRichard FrazerDirector, ChairRichard has been minister at Greyfriars Kirk in Edinburgh since 2003 and is founder and Chair of the Grassmarket Community Project. He is also Convenor of the Church of Scotland’s Church and Society Council. He has a longstanding interest in enabling people to flourish regardless of their background and has a passion for social justice and finding alternative pathways towards a viable and humane economy that includes rather than excludes and enables people and the planet to thrive. He has an interest in and has written on agriculture and pilgrimage walking and loves to cook, build and garden. He is married to Kate a counsellor and psychoanalyst and they have three grown up children.
- Jayne ChappellDirector, Vice ChairJayne ChappellDirector, Vice Chair
Jayne has over 17 years of experience in the social enterprise sector, and is currently Finance & Development Manager with Social Enterprise Network Scotland. In addition to overseeing the finances for the organisation, she also co-facilitates the Employability SEN, a national network of over 250 social enterprises that deliver employability outcomes. In this wide-ranging role Jayne supports, promotes and connects social enterprises; raises awareness of their contribution to Scotland’s employability landscape and consults with and represents members’ interests. She believes social enterprises are the foundation for a fairer, more inclusive Scotland and is proud to be part of that community.
- Nicky FindlayDirector, TreasurerNicky FindlayDirector, TreasurerWith over 30 years’ experience in various accounting and finance roles, Nicky is currently working as Head of Finance & Estates at a special needs school locally and prior to that had spent eight years working at a specialist alcohol & drugs charity based in Aberdeen. Nicky has also worked within the oil & gas and service sectors in various finance and management roles. In 2006, after a career change, she completed an MSc in Property Economics and undertook academic research for a further year. She hopes to put to use her skills and experience as a GCP Trustee, in supporting the team at this very exciting time in the future development of the organisation.
- Jo ElliotDirectorJo ElliotDirector
Jo Elliot has a background in finance, latterly as chief executive of the Edinburgh merchant bank Quayle Munro. Since 2010 he has held a number of appointments as non-executive director or trustee in arts, education and social care including University of Dundee, St Mary’s Music School, Scottish Grantmakers, Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Dunedin Consort. Besides being a trustee of the Grassmarket Community Project and of Greyfriars Charteris Centre he is Session Clerk of Greyfriars Kirk and a board member of the Church of Scotland Social Care Council (Crossreach)
- Joanne MacDougallDirectorJoanne MacDougallDirectorOur newest Board Member, joining us in September 2018, Joanne is a communications professional with more than 15 years’ experience in both the public and private sector. Previously working on a number of internal and external campaigns for the City of Edinburgh Council, Joanne currently manages the marketing, PR and communications for Hub South East - a development partner delivering community infrastructure in partnership with public sector bodies in Edinburgh, the Lothians and Scottish Borders. Through this work, Joanne lead fundraising efforts to handover more than £40,000 to GCP and has since been a great advocate and supporter of our work. Joanne is married to Ramsay and has a nine year old son, seven year old daughter and two yappy miniature schnauzers.
- Douglas ArmstrongDirectorDouglas ArmstrongDirector
Douglas brings over 20 years’ public sector experience on policy, strategy and operations within the Scottish Government. Currently, Fuel Poverty Strategy Team Leader, he has recently supported portfolio areas as part of the Covid-19 response, EU Exit transition, and on the Vaccination Programme roll-out across Scotland. He holds several non-executive appointments across mental health and social justice organisations, including as part of the Grassmarket Mission. He became a GCP Trustee in September 2021.
Senior Management Team
- Helene van der PloegChief Executive OfficerHelene van der PloegChief Executive Officer
Prior to her appointment as CEO in May 2023, Helene had been on our board for 5 years. She has been in catering and hospitality throughout her career, running her own ventures and specialising in start-ups and contract mobilisations for commercial and social enterprises, including Edinburgh Castle and Edinburgh Zoo.
She worked for 9 years at Space @ Broomhouse Hub leading on the construction of their £3m new build and the subsequent development of the income-generating social enterprises and community activities. Latterly, she was the Director of Food & Enterprise at The Larder, delivering the start up of their new Bakery Shop, development of their outside catering and opening of their Cafe and Community Shop in Broxburn.
In 2016, Helene completed a Masters in Gastronomy with Distinction, focusing on sustainable food procurement in local authorities. Her focus is on food as that vital connector, to engage with the community, and work towards reducing food poverty, social isolation, and mental health issues. Whilst Helene loves all things food, she is an advocate for the great outdoors too - from kayaking to hill walking; horse-riding to a good stomp; she is keen to share these passions as a contrast to her work and a chance to connect with others.
- Catherine JonesDirector of Social EnterpriseCatherine JonesDirector of Social EnterpriseCatherine was Deputy General Manager at Edinburgh Zoo for 16 years, with responsibility for dozens of restaurants and kiosks, managing multi-million pound budgets and serving one of Scotland’s largest visitor attractions. Following this she was training manager for Macdonalds across multiple stores. Catherine manages the largest team at GCP, many of whom have support needs. She nurtures talent many employers ignore. Her team were integral to the success of the GCP receiving Scottish Enterprise of the Year Scotland and Best Performing Business awards.
- Perry O'BrayHead of Members ServicesPerry O'BrayHead of Members Services
The newest member of the Senior management team - Perry has spent the past 8 years working with vulnerable children and adults in schools and social work organisations. Most recently managing Outreach & Day services with Scottish Autism.
Perry is a huge advocate of hobbies and is often out walking in the hills, swimming at Lothian beaches or creating art and writing songs at home studio (shed). Sharing these passions and exploring creative ways of supporting people has been a big part of Perry’s career so far and he is really looking forward to influencing and being part of an innovative and energetic community.
- Louise MaloneFinance ManagerLouise MaloneFinance Manager
Aiden Searle, Woodwork Pre-apprentice
Anita Kalna, Café/Events Server
Campbell Deeming, Wood Workshop Assistant Manager
Catherine Jones, Social Enterprise Director
Charlie Halliday, Marketing & Communications Manager
Craig Ross, Cleaner
Derek King, Learning & Development Manager
Donna Hamilton, Café/Events server – Cleaner
Edward Cleary, Cleaner
Eleonora Urso, Café Manager
Hazel Reid, Finance Administrator
Helene van der Ploeg, Chief Executive Officer
James Wedderburn, Woodwork Pre-apprentice
Janie Conlon, Tartan Volunteer/Catering Assistant
Joanna Greener, Café/Events Server
Jon Slight, Wood Workshop Manager
Kelly Lowe, Chef
Kevin Gould, Head Chef
Kevin Radzynski, Volunteer & Member Engagement Manager
Lewis Ramsay, Workshop Assistant
Lorna McMahon, Café Supervisor
Louis Glass, Café/Events Server
Louise Malone, Finance Manager
Milly Scott, Events & Hospitality Manager
Niamh Dixon, Café/Events Server
Nicole McCormak, Cafe/Events Server
Nick Shepherd, Literacy Tutor
Perry O’Bray, Head of Members Services
Rohan Crickmar, Cinema Duty Manager
Steven Thorburn, Workshop Assistant
Taylor Paterson, Chef
Usman Khan, Project Worker