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Chief Executive of global childrens charity steps down

Chief Executive Tanya Barron steps down

Tanya Barron OBE will be retiring from her position as Chief Executive at global children’s charity Plan International UK in June of this year. 

Ms. Barron joined as Chief Executive in 2013, after being inspired by the charity’s Because I am a Girl campaign, which transforms girls’ lives through education. During her tenure at Plan she has grown the charity from around £50m to £70m and has championed the start-up of a commercial practice and a new programme on girls’ rights in the UK.  

Working in international development for most of her career, Ms. Barron worked with Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO) and then the European Children’s Trust, working with governments to set up fostering services to replace institutional care for orphaned children in Eastern Europe. During this period, she managed a European Commission budget line for vulnerable children and was also the Chair of the UNICEF NGO Committee in Geneva. Before joining Plan International UK, she was the International Director for Leonard Cheshire Disability. 

Ms Barron said, “I’ve felt incredibly privileged to work for a charity that strives to advance children’s rights and equality for girls all over the world.

“Throughout my time at Plan International UK, I’ve been continually inspired and amazed by the impact and quality of Plan’s work on the ground, and by the passion and effectiveness of our young campaigners. One of my highlights has been watching our young campaigners working globally to successfully change marriage laws in Malawi!  

“Another highlight of a different kind, was when I found myself caught up in the Nepal earthquake. It was terrifying, but I will never forget being immediately pulled into the local Plan emergency team and working all hours to get shelter and assistance to families left with nothing. It was Plan, in action, at its best."

She added, “International aid is needed now more than ever before. With more people displaced from their homes, there are more girls living in incredibly vulnerable situations. I’m extremely proud of the progress Plan International UK has made in changing the lives of girls and boys around the world and look forward to seeing it continue to make a difference.”

Professor Sir Ian Diamond, Chair of the charity, said, “Tanya’s dedication and passion for gender equality has meant she has worked tirelessly over the past six years to establish Plan International UK as a leader in championing children's rights.

“We want to thank Tanya for her valued contribution as Chief Executive and wish her all the best in the future.”

He added, “Plan International UK does incredible work and I want to reassure supporters, donors, staff and of course beneficiaries that this work will continue throughout this period of change.”

The charity is in the early stages of the process to recruit a successor, and an announcement will be made in due course.