Develop your charitable organisation on the Pilotlight Programme

Supporting charity leaders to think strategically and plan for sustainability.

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For over 17 years our Pilotlight Programme has been helping charity and social enterprise leaders and their boards develop the skills they need to thrive. Over 10 months the programme sees you work with a dedicated team of four senior leaders (we call them Pilotlighters) from a range of private, public, and charity sector organisations. Together, they coach you and your organisation's leadership through the strategic challenges and opportunities you face. A Pilotlight Project Manager facilitates meetings, drives for outcomes, and takes care of all the administration.

Our Pilotlighters pay a donation to participate, enabling us to offer the programme free to charities and social enterprises.

How it works

How it works

Over two-hourly meetings once a month*, together with the Pilotlighters, you will create between 2-4 project aims you will work to achieve. These are responsive to your organisation’s needs and can include: vision and mission setting; governance and leadership development; strategic business planning; away day planning/facilitation; income diversification; improved impact measurement.

At the end of the programme you could have created a robust future-looking strategy, a refreshed governance structure, revised vision & mission statements or an action plan for key operational improvements.

As our support is free of charge, we expect charity leaders to commit at least a day a month for the length of the engagement, though the more time you and your organisation can put in, the more you’ll get out of it. We also expect your board of trustees to be fully engaged with the programme and for the Chair to attend meetings with the charity leader where possible.

*All meetings are currently taking place virtually over Zoom.



Our programmes work best when working with organisations that are open to change and challenge. They are open to leaders of any charity or social enterprise registered in the UK that tackles social disadvantage.

We do not work with organisations that discriminate on the basis of race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, age, disability, or any other similar categories or organisations who proselytise to service users. Organisations working with predominately BAME service users or addressing issues in BAME community are encouraged to apply.

The Pilotlight Programme is most successful when working with:

Organisations that:

  • are open to and embrace change and challenge
  • have a turnover of between £100K and £5m
  • have been delivering services for at least 2 years
  • have at least one full-time, paid leadership position
  • are able to demonstrate a degree of financial stability to engage in the Pilotlight process

Leaders who:

  • have been in position for at least 6 months
  • have the capacity to dedicate time to the programme

Please scroll down for our FAQs.


Need More info?

Download our FAQs

Download our FAQs

Take a look at our most frequently asked questions on the Pilotlight Programme for more detail on how it works.