Our leadership team is responsible for setting Gingerbread’s strategic direction and making sure we do the best work possible to support single parent families.

Senior leadership team

Victoria Benson

Chief Executive Officer

Victoria joined Gingerbread in February 2019, having served on the Board for four years before that. As a single mum to six children and the daughter of a single parent herself, Victoria is passionate about supporting single parent families and driving forward our ambitious strategy.

Prior to working at Gingerbread, Victoria was Director of Governance at Macmillan Cancer Support for 12 years, and practised as a solicitor before that. Victoria also has a PG Dip in Voluntary Sector Management from Cass Business School.

Email: victoria.benson(@)gingerbread.org.uk

Management team

Jo Hardy

Head of Services

Jo is responsible for Gingerbread’s advice services, including the helpline and peer support activities, covering our network of single parent friendship groups across England and Wales. She is also the charity's safeguarding lead.

Jo has spent almost three decades working in the charity sector, in organisations providing a range of information, advice and family support services, including Contact, Mencap and YoungMinds. She also spent five years on the London region grant-making committee at BBC Children in Need.

As a single parent, with two grown-up sons, and having been raised in a single parent household, Jo is passionate about supporting single parent families, and in particular about challenging disadvantage, empowering parents and carers to thrive and get the best outcomes for children, and innovation in the charity sector.

Email: jo.hardy(@)gingerbread.org.uk

Farah Baldock

Interim Head of Communications and Digital

Farah joined Gingerbread in May 2019. In her role as Interim Head of Communications and Digital, Farah is responsible for the organisations communications, campaigning and digital activities.

Prior to joining Gingerbread, Farah spent 7 years living in China where she balanced caring for her two young daughters alongside taking up freelance and volunteer communications roles. Before moving to China Farah led the communications for Locality, the national network for community-led organisations. As the daughter of a single parent herself, Farah is passionate about empowering single parents to share their voices and make positive change happen.

Email: farah.baldock (@) gingerbread.org.uk

Doug Ridley

Head of Finance and Resources

Joining the Gingerbread team in June 2020, Doug has oversight of Finance, IT, Facilities Management – all the vital back office work that supports the organisation in being the best it can be.

Prior to Gingerbread Doug spent 3 years as Finance Director of a property services company in Mayfair, 10 years as Regional Corporate Services Manager for the Australian Government and 8 years for the London Borough of Lewisham.

A “Ginger Kid”, Doug’s relationship with Gingerbread dates back to the mid 1970s, when his local group provided a vital support network to him, his Mum and baby sister. He is delighted to have found a practical way of saying thank you.

Email: doug.ridley(@)gingerbread.org.uk

Steve Hawe

Head of Fundraising and Marketing

Steve Hawe joined Gingerbread in August 2020 and leads on raising the funds we need to support our work.

Before joining Gingerbread, he led fundraising and communications teams at the children’s literacy charity Coram Beanstalk and the disability charity the Disabled Living Foundation. He started his career as a fundraiser at the Big Issue Foundation, after moving into the voluntary sector following thirteen years working in marketing and communications in the online information/academic publishing sector.

He is a member of the Institute of Fundraising and CharityComms.

Email: steve.hawe(@)gingerbread.org.uk

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