Essex Community Foundation welcomes new Trustees

29th June 2022

Three professionals have joined the Board of Trustees at Essex Community Foundation (ECF), one of the leading community foundations in the UK.

Atul Manek, Emma Goode and Soumya Krishna Kumar have become Trustees of the independent charitable trust, which is based in Chelmsford and works with individuals, families, businesses, trusts and public agencies to give financial support to charities and voluntary groups in Essex.

ECF was set up in 1996 and since then has awarded £48 million and currently manages 180 charitable funds on behalf of its donors.

Caroline Taylor, chief executive of ECF said: “We are always looking to engage with people who share our passion for local communities and want to work with us to shape the strategic direction of the Foundation.  Becoming a trustee is just one way that we can do this, and we look forward to working with Atul, Emma and Soumya, who all bring valuable skills and experience that will help to further advance our work.”

Atul joins ECF following a 30-year career in financial services, mainly in investment management. He is also a qualified chartered accountant. In addition to becoming a Trustee, Atul has also set up a charitable fund to start his family’s giving journey to support charities in Essex and internationally.

Atul said: “I was introduced to ECF by my financial adviser, and I quickly realised that they could help me to achieve my charitable aims.  I was so inspired by their work that when I saw they were advertising for Trustees, I applied.

“I was delighted to be invited to join the Board of Trustees and I am really looking forward to learning about the non-profit sector and using my skills and experience to help the Foundation build on what it has already achieved.”

Emma Goode, a social media consultant and owner of the digital marketing agency 24 fingers, is bringing her communications expertise to the Board.

“When I first learnt about ECF and its role in supporting local charities and community groups, I was really impressed.” said Emma.

“I was born in Essex, started my business here and the most of my clients are Essex-based.  I have huge sense of pride for the county and look forward to helping ECF broaden its reach so that more people can know about them and the great work of local charities.”

Soumya Krishnakumar is involved in the Young Trustee Movement.  During the COVID-19 pandemic she launched The Crisis Project after, an innovative project that enabled people to volunteer and send letters of thanks to NHS workers, while not leaving their homes.

Soumya said: “Having had my own experience of running a not-for-profit organisation, I really wanted to take that next step and become a charity Trustee.

“I saw the advert for ECF and it felt like a perfect fit as they support such a wide range of causes, but with a focus of helping to improve the lives of people in Essex. I can’t wait to get started.”