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First Civil Service wide YP Syndicate launches


YP Syndicate, X-Civil Service

Photo caption: Eaves Syndicate members with Karen Mattison MBE and Laura Bassett from Eaves

The average UK citizen spends nearly 17 hours a week watching TV, but only one hour on voluntary work. Well, not for these guys.

This week, Admiralty House hosted the official launch of the Eaves Young Philanthropy Syndicate, the first-cross Whitehall Syndicate to be established. The Syndicate members, 17 passionate civil servants, are partnering with the innovative charity Eaves and will be dedicating their time, money and skills to support the charity. Karen Mattison MBE (Founder of social enterprise Women Like Us) and Jo Swinson (Minister for Women and Equalities) are both proud to offer their support to the Syndicate.

Minister Jo Swinson stated: “We know there is far too much violence against women in our society. The statistics are shocking. I’m really proud of the individuals who have joined up the Syndicate, in their spare time, using their own money. I hope this will be start of many more Syndicates happening across Whitehall”

Eaves’ mission is to identify and address violence against women and girls in the UK, and has built up specialisms in the areas of human trafficking, exiting prostitution, and sexual violence. The timing of this has been crucial, with the Syndicate helping to fund and support projects that would otherwise have had to be scaled down due to lack of funding.

Chief Executive of Eaves said how supportive she is of this unique partnership:
“Everyone at Eaves is really excited to be working with a group of passionate, determined and skilled individuals. This feels like the start of something that has huge potential to generate interest and to mobilise in a way that will impact positively on our organisation, not just now but also in years to come.”

What are they actually doing?

The Syndicate is funding the crucial work of Kate Cunningham, a specialist Detentions Centre Outreach worker. Kate’s role is to identify and protect women who have been victims of human trafficking, but find themselves wrongly caught in the criminal justice system without adequate personal or legal support. The role is incredibly vital, not least because it is the only one of its kind in the UK. Since the role has been established, 33 women who had been unjustly imprisoned have been released, as a result of Eaves proactively work.

In terms of their time and skills, the Syndicate is designing and running interactive skills workshops for the women, a service that Eaves have specifically asked the group to deliver in light of their own funding constraints; support Eaves’ communications strategy and their search for more sustainable funding for the future; and promoting a wider information campaign to ensure these issues get the attention they deserve. Each of the members are dedicated to making sure their impact goes beyond the lifetime of the Syndicate.

And as Karen Mattison pointed out, this will be a challenging but incredibly rewarding experience for the members involved:

“The Syndicate is not just about giving money, it’s about the members making a long-lasting connection with Eaves. From my experience working in the charitable sector, I know it’s often the same person doing the advertising, making the tea, fixing the printer. This partnership will give members an insight into the reality of what running a small charity is really like”.

So, why not get involved?

Permanent Secretary, Richard Heaton, pledges his support for the Syndicate and encourages more people to get involved: “Young Philanthropy is an innovative and brilliant way to support a charitable cause, and the Eaves Syndicate is the second time Cabinet Office people have taken part in it. The syndicate has been set up by a group of highly committed and passionate individuals, across Whitehall, and I’m really pleased to support it. I hope that more syndicates will emerge across government, making the most of the drive, skills and expertise I see every day in the civil service.”

Need to know a bit more about Young Philanthropy…

Bill Gates, Warren Buffet and others have worked hard to raise the profile of philanthropy, but it must not be seen as an activity only for the super-wealthy.
This is where the ‘Young Philanthropy Syndicate comes in, ‘educating and empowering a new generation of leading philanthropists.’ The Syndicate offers a unique platform, allowing individuals to foster a close relationship with a chosen charity so they can really see the impact of their financial and expertise contribution.

To get involved in the Civil Service please email

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