Channel 4 chair to lead Oxfam Great Britain council of trustees

The chair of Channel 4 is to take up the same role at Oxfam Great Britain, the charity has announced.

The TV channel’s chair Charles Gurassa will take over as chair of Oxfam GB’s council of trustees from Caroline Thomson when she steps down in October.

Gurassa has also held charity board level roles at the National Trust, English Heritage and the Migration Museum.

His executive level experience includes being a former chief executive of Thomson Travel and TUI Northern Europe. He has also chaired housing association, Genesis Housing Group.

“As someone who is passionate about Oxfam’s values and its work tackling poverty and saving lives in humanitarian emergencies, I am delighted to have the chance to contribute,” said Gurassa.

“Oxfam’s work is needed now more than ever - it makes a huge difference in places like Yemen, Syria and South Sudan, where Covid and the economic devastation wrought by the pandemic is piling crisis on top of crisis for millions of people.

“Oxfam’s mix of work with local communities to give people in some of the world’s toughest environments a route out of poverty, combined with global action to break down the barriers that trap people in poverty make it uniquely well placed to make a real difference.”

Oxfam chief executive Danny Sriskandarajah added: “I am delighted to welcome Charles to Oxfam. He brings a wealth of experience from the commercial and charity sectors that will be invaluable to Oxfam and to me personally.

“I would like to thank Caroline for her wise counsel during my first 18 months at Oxfam. She has made a profound contribution - helping Oxfam act on the lessons of the past and ensuring this wonderful 78-year-old organisation is ready to meet the challenges of the next decade.”

Safeguarding scandal

This month in an interview with Charity Times Sriskandarajah admitted that he took the role after telling trustees “you’ve clearly let yourselves down” amid the safeguarding scandal that rocked the charity.

Sriskandarajah took up the role following the resignation of Mark Goldring in 2018, after a public outcry over sexual misconduct by the charity’s staff in Haiti and Chad and subsequent attempts to cover it up.

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