Together we can make Yorkshire a place
where every person can thrive
in their life and work


Better Connect is a Knaresborough-based non-profit organisation that aims to create a Yorkshire where every person is empowered to thrive in their life and work.

Founded in 2007, we have an established track record of leading successful partnership projects and working with a wide range of locally based partners in the heart of communities.

We partner with organisations across all sectors, with a particular focus and specialism of supporting and strengthening organisations from the voluntary, community and social enterprise sector.

We believe that locally rooted organisations with a strong social mission who work in effective partnership with others have the biggest impact on individuals and communities. We exist to create those partnerships and unlock the potential of local organisations.

Meet Our Team

What we do

We exist to create Better Connections for people and organisations across Yorkshire. All our work contributes to our 3 strategic goals

Transform Lives

Transform Lives

We design and lead innovative partnership programmes that transform the lives of people across Yorkshire

Empower Partners

Empower Partners

We provide specialist support to partners to become more impactful, resilient and sustainable

Inspire Change

Inspire Change

We promote social inclusion as an essential part of creating vibrant, productive and prosperous communities

Current Opportunities

There are lots of ways you can get involved with Better Connect.
Why not explore our Current Opportunities to see which are the best fit for you?

£5,000 - £20,000 Grants

Apply for a grant of between £5,000 and £20,000 to deliver skills and employability activities through Community Grants.

Fully funded role and £1,200 Grant

Secure 6 months of salary payments and a £1,200 grant to employ a young person through Kickstart.

Free Workplace Support

Personalised in-work coaching and mentoring for people who are neurodiverse, disabled or experience mental health challenges.

Join Our Board Of Directors

We are excited to be seeking additional Directors to add value to an already vibrant and effective Board.  This is a great time to join our Board, as we continue to develop following the successful launch of our new name and new brand in July 2021.

News and Updates

A Big Thanks to Nick…

Mental Health news item Thriving at Work Uncategorized Wellbeing Resources

    We want to say a big thank you to Nicola Gibbons from York Mind for kicking off our new series of lunchtime learning webinars  – funded as part of Thriving at Work. The session  – focusing on the importance of employee mental health – was really well received and we hope that it

New Community Grants Projects

Blog ESF Community Grants news item

  We have been managing ESF Community Grants, alongside Humber Learning Consortium, since 2008! It is our longest running programme at Better Connect and has funded projects for hundreds of different organisations across the years. With the funding for Community Grants drawing to a close next year, we would like to take some time to

Helping People Thrive at Work – Autism Plus

news item Thriving at Work

  Do you have neurodiverse or autistic staff members? We all want to support our staff members to thrive in their workplaces. However, if your staff members are neurodiverse or autistic it may be more challenging to create environments to help them to do that. Today’s story is about some of the lovely staff at

Lunchtime Learning – Webinars for Busy Employers

Mental Health news item Thriving at Work Uncategorized Wellbeing Resources

  Thriving at Work offers an exciting new range of bite-sized webinars on staff wellbeing, inclusion and neurodiversity. We’ll be touching on subjects such as: Encouraging Diversity Inclusivity in the Workplace Mental Health Supporting staff who are Neurodiverse Workplace wellbeing   The first lunchtime sessions are now available and we’ll be adding more as the

Kickstart Opportunities Available

Kickstart news item

  Do you know someone 18-24 and claiming universal credit? Would this person like the opportunity to take on a paid placement for 6 months within a fantastic organisation?   We have a range of exciting Kickstart opportunities that have not yet been filled by young people! All employers that are approved through our gateway

Hybrid working: how we opened the offices

Blog news item

  Reopening the office?  Returning to the office?  Getting back to normal? Whichever term you prefer, figuring out how your organisation will work now that we’re allowed back into offices can seem a daunting task.  If you are still wary of how you might reopen your office, perhaps our story can lend you some confidence.

Could you be one of our new Directors?

Blog Careers news item

  Become a Director of Better Connect We are excited to be seeking additional Directors to add value to an already vibrant and effective Board.  This is a great time to join our Board, as we continue to develop following the successful launch of our new name and new brand in July 2021. The deadline

Young People Feedback on the Kickstart Programme

Blog Kickstart news item

  “It’s the best job I’ve ever had!”, “I’m loving it!” was just some of the amazingly positive feedback we have received from Kickstart young people about their current placements. As the Kickstart Assistant at Better Connect one of my first tasks was to introduce myself to all the young people that were currently in

“The work I’m doing on Kickstart is helping me feel confident in myself and my own decisions which is changing me for the better”

Blog Careers Kickstart Meet the Team news item

I never thought I would be involved in Kickstart; however, it has taken over my life in the best way! At the start of the pandemic, I had to come home to finish of my degree online following this time I found myself on universal credit and working a low hour’s part time job. This

“When I started on my Kickstart placement, I wasn’t expecting the support I have received, it has been amazing!”

Blog Careers Kickstart Meet the Team news item

The last 18 months have been different for everyone. People have lost their jobs, had mental health challenges, and being stuck in all-round hard situations! There has been some good that has come from this time too. My story began before the pandemic. For three years I worked in a retail job part time while

Interview Top Tips for Kickstarters

Blog Careers Kickstart news item

    The truth is all employers will be looking for something different when they are interviewing candidates for a job. It depends on many factors such as the job role itself, our own personal preferences, the ‘idea’ of the sort of person we may want, the organisations values and many many more things! Now

Stress Busting Strategies

Blog Mental Health news item Wellbeing Resources

  We all know the feeling of stress at work now and then. I absolutely love my job, but I’m no stranger to the pressure you can feel when there’s deadlines looming and just not quite enough hours in the day to check every last email… That being said, I’ve found it’s really important to

Fanta’s Story

Action Towards Inclusion

  Today we meet Fanta, who is originally from Gambia and has lived in York now for three years. Fanta accessed the Action Towards Inclusion programme due to experiencing housing issues whilst she was pregnant with her daughter and received keyworker support from Liz at the Opportunity Centre. Fanta has received support with housing, education,

Thriving at Work Training – FAA Award in Awareness of First Aid for Mental Health

Mental Health news item Thriving at Work Wellbeing Resources

  Thriving at Work is an innovative project that offers employers and employees a range of support  – helping to make workplaces more inclusive and supporting. This is a one day course to be held on the 22nd October 2021 and is available individuals that wish to improve their knowledge of mental health in the

Cleaning Up The Beach

Action Towards Inclusion

  Laughter, waves, singing, birds… Just some of the sounds of a Scarborough beach clean. The Opportunity Centre (previously Aspire Igen) is a Yorkshire based social enterprise committed to changing lives for the better through learning and work. On ATI, they work across Scarborough, York and Ryedale to support lone parents. They give them 1-1

Thriving at Work – Lisa’s Story

Thriving at Work

  “I have had many dark days through depression and my anxiety has at times been so debilitating. Ricky has given me the tools to control my emotions and not let my mental health control me but learn to live with it….”   It was great to receive a recent case study from Working For

Connecting with the Outside – St Nick’s

Thriving at Work

Thriving at Work aims to support more people to thrive at work. It has a particular focus on supporting inclusive workplaces that can unlock the potential of staff who are neurodiverse, disabled or experience mental health challenges. We recently met up with Esther from St Nicks  – who talked about their exciting offer as part

Inclusive and Active Citizens

ESF Community Grants

  Our latest video case study features Jake and the LGBT+ Forum in York.  They have recently been an ESF Community Grants delivery partner – offering confidence building courses sand support in CV writing and interview techniques to unemployed people in North Yorkshire. Jake describes the overall work of the forum as “…wanting to help

Carrie’s Story

Action Towards Inclusion

 Carrie is a recent participant on Action Towards Inclusion – a dynamic programme across York, North Yorkshire and the East Riding supporting people into work, training and volunteering. Carrie faced a number of challenges but has made fantastic progress through taking part in the programme. Action Towards Inclusion is funded by the European Social

New Staff at Better Connect

Blog Careers news item

Did you know when you hit 17 zoom boxes on zoom the image quality drops? Well, we found that out over the past few weeks as our lovely staff team has recently grown! It has been such an exciting time for new staff members to join us at Better Connect! We are very excited to