Applications are now open for leadership support from Pilotlight. Leaders of ambitious charities and social enterprises based in the UK can apply for our innovative free mentoring programmes. Worth up to £16k, they are designed to tackle the issues organisations are facing and amplify their impact.

How does it work?

We have a range of programmes <>  that offer individualised expert guidance on everything from creative operational improvements and efficiencies to sustainable long-term business strategies. Successful applicants will benefit from the support of business experts from diverse private and public sector organisations. These empathetic “Pilotlighters” help charity leaders through the strategic and operational challenges they may face.

Ed Mayo CEO at Pilotlight, said:

“Charities and social enterprises work tirelessly to tackle disadvantage and put their heart and soul into their causes. But, with competing pressures and opportunities, it can be difficult to know which direction to take. That’s where Pilotlight comes in.

“Our programmes see empathetic business experts share their expertise with charities, bringing new perspectives, diverse skills, and vast experience to bear on the challenges they’re facing. Since 1996, we’ve helped more than 1,000 charities reach more people, and contributed to a better world. We’ve seen it all, and we know how to make an intervention work.”

Pilotlighters develop an understanding of the workings of a charity, delve into finances and operations, and learn about opportunities on the horizon.

To date, charity participants report increased effectiveness of the service their charity delivers, increased income and increased reach after working with Pilotlight.

One organisation that benefitted from Pilotlight’s programmes is Independent Advocacy North East (IANE), a charity based in North Shields. Debbie Shelton, CEO, described the journey:

“Personally and professionally I’ve found the programme incredibly useful, as a CEO I’m expected to know all the answers and I honestly don’t. I like the way I am listened to, our issues/objectives are broken down into manageable chunks, I feel supported and there’s a ‘can do’ attitude throughout.”

Who can apply?

Charities that have been operational for over two years, employ at least one paid full-time leadership position (in post for at least six months), and have an income of less than £5 million per year, are eligible to apply. We are exploring how we can support smaller organisations. If you don’t fit all the criteria but would like to apply for support, please do. Organisations working with service users who are predominantly Black People and People of Colour (BPOC) or addressing issues in these communities are encouraged to apply.

If this sounds like your organisation, or an organisation you know then see below on how to apply.

Application deadlines depend on which programme you want to apply to, upcoming deadlines are: Friday 18 February, Friday 4 March and Friday 1 April.

For further information, visit <>  or contact the Pilotlight Charity Partnerships team on 07483 014783 or <> .