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Helen Walker is Chief Executive of TimeBank, a national volunteering charity that aims to make volunteering part of the fabric of everyday life and a rewarding experience for everyone involved. The charity specialises in mentoring projects that tackle complex social issues. It also takes an innovative approach to employee volunteering, helping employees develop leadership, decision-making and negotiation skills and companies to build effective teams, engage staff and improve retention rates.

Before joining TimeBank in 2008, Helen was Director of Fundraising at the military charity SSAFA and was previously Head of Fundraising at Hospitality Action, the benevolent association for the hospitality industry.

Brought up on the Isle of Man, Helen now lives in East London. She studied for a degree and M.Phil at the London School of Economics before joining the School of Oriental and African Studies as Briefing Officer.

Helen is passionate about volunteering as an effective intervention to tackle complex social issues and believes that great volunteering can transform the lives of both volunteers and beneficiaries by building stronger, happier and more inclusive communities. She was inspired to work in the voluntary sector after volunteering as a Trustee of a small charity funding a school for deaf children in Tanzania.

On joining TimeBank, Helen undertook a fundamental review of the organisation’s vision, mission and values to define the charity’s core direction in its second decade. A new brand and website was launched reflecting this strategic review. During the last two years – and in a challenging economic climate for the voluntary sector – Helen’s focus has been on ensuring TimeBank’s long-term sustainability. This has been achieved by developing a comprehensive business plan, increasing the charity’s income streams and building a solid platform for the charity’s future development.

Helen is an inspirational speaker, who has spoken at House of Commons events, at Business4Better, Cass Business School and YMCA conferences; at Charity Works seminars; the Third Sector Women Lunch & Learn event and the speakers’ panel for the launch of Do-it among many others. She writes regular blogs about the challenges facing the voluntary sector.

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