The 2027 programme provides UK trusts, foundations and social investment organisations a cost-effective way to find and develop deeply-rooted working-class talent to improve the effectiveness of the philanthropic sector


2027 exists to bring funders and working-class communities across the UK closer together, so that we can develop fairer funding initiatives and create positive and transformational social change.  It is a collaboration between Ten Years’ Time, Charityworks, Koreo, Northern Soul and Centre for Knowledge Equity.
2027’s name is derived from it’s ambition. Starting in 2017 with the aim to support 15 people from working-class communities to access roles grant-giving and social investment organisations, every year for 10 years, the programme has exceeded expectations with almost 115 associates taking part in just 6 years.
It was born our of the recognition that grant-giving and social investment organisations are increasingly responding to the pressure to be more equitable in the decisions they make about what to fund and who makes those decisions.  Compounding this, the sector often finds it challenging to attract candidates from diverse backgrounds and in particular those with greater experience of often working-class communities.  Furthermore, with small teams and limited training budgets, funders feel apprehensive about hiring in talent who haven’t necessarily working in grant-giving before, without the provision of giving them additional developmental support.

How it works

1. Recruitment & selection

Each year, 2027 is promoted widely across a network of partners and charities through a nationwide recruitment campaign, targeting people with frontline community experience.  We specifically focus activity on those who self-define as working-class, including many from minoritised and underrepresented communities.  Candidates are taken through a rigorous recruitment and selection process comprising application form, written activities, group-based exercises and interview with behvioural sciences approaches to mitigating unconscious bias deeply embedded in our selection process.

2. Placement matching

Our highly regarded placement matching process is built around 15 years experience matching the right candidate to the right partner resulting in xx retention rate.  We use information you give us about your opportunity and undertake a deeply considered examination of our talent pool with our expert team recommended a candidate based on their interests, background, location and potential. Our process is built to be simple and streamlined for hiring managers, and we always give the hiring manager the chance to meet anybody we are recommending, and to have the final say on who is hired.

4. Beyond the 12-months

Whilst there’s no obligation to hire your Associate at the end of the placement, although many of our partners do with the majority delighted to be retained in an extended or permanent role. With more that 100 Associates now shaping the future of the grant-giving and social investment sector we keep your new team member connected across an alumni community.

3. Job & development programme

Successful candidates are employed by you in a role that utilises their frontline & community experience, for 12-months full-time. During this time they will take part in a dedicated development programme comprising mentoring, facilitated and self-directed learning, residentials and peer support spaces. They’ll also produce a change initiative report to share their experiences and findings on a topic to drive sector or organisational change. Finally, our dedicated programme team is on hand to support both your Associate and their line manager throughout the year.

The network






Years of

BBC Children in Need – Big Society Capital – British Science Association – City Bridge Trust – City of London – Corra Foundation – Cycling Scotland – Esmeé Fairbairn – Joseph Rowntree Foundation – Lloyds Bank Foundation – National Lottery Community Fund – National Lottery Heritage Fund – NHS Charities Together – Oak Foundation – Paul Hamlyn Foundation – Postcode Lottery – The Movements Trust – The Seafarers Charity



Working class by


Black, Asian or
Minority Ethnic


Over thirty

With the programme targeted at those that self-identify as working-class, a diverse sector drawing on the lived experienced of the communities it seek’s the serve is clearly at the heart of the 2027 offer. However, as part of our approach we’ve identified deep intersectionality between other diversity characteristics alongside social class. This is in part a result of our approach to making recruitment processes as inclusive as possible through our six core inclusive recruitment principles:

Host an associate today

Enquire about hosting a 2027 Associate by emailing or completing the form below.