Matt Hyde, CEO of the Scouts UK, and Andrew Bollington, volunteer, on their 'Early Years' provision



Matt Hyde, CEO of the Scouts UK, and volunteer Andrew Bollington join Alberto Lidji to discuss ‘the Squirrels’ — a new Early Years provision for 4 and 5 year olds.


Get a behind-the-scenes look at how ‘the Squirrels’ came about and how the programme is providing 4 and 5 year olds with skills for life when it matters most by promoting key skills like working together, communication and language, as well as creativity and community awareness.


Gain insight from an in-depth conversation covering the entire journey of how the Squirrels went from initial concept to successful funding, evidence-based piloting, execution and meaningful scale.


We hear of the many challenges that had to be overcome, the funding sources that were tapped and the diverse stakeholders who were brought on board to make this initiative a success.


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NOTE: for previous episodes from 2019 and 2020 featuring Matt Hyde, please click here.


About Matt Hyde


Matt Hyde is Chief Executive of the Scouts, the UK’s largest youth movement. Formerly Chief Executive of the National Union of Students (NUS), he has undertaken a number of leadership roles in the charity sector and as Chief Executive of the Scouts has contributed to a period of record membership growth since he joined in 2013.  He has overseen the development and delivery of a rebrand, award-winning campaigns and has spearheaded work to support the growth of Scouting in areas of deprivation.


Matt is also a trustee of Comic Relief, a Patron of UNLOCK (the charity for people with convictions) and was previously Vice-Chair of the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO).  He developed the world’s first degree apprenticeship for social change which launched at Queen Mary University of London in 2019.


Matt was awarded an OBE in the 2020 New Years Honours List and an Honorary Fellowship from Queen Mary University of London in 2012. He was named as one of the 25 most influential charity sector leaders by Charity Times in 2019.




About Andrew Bollington


Andrew Bollington is Managing Director of viaEd where he leads a small and specialist team that support grant giving foundations with strategy, programme development, learning and evaluation in the fields of education and early childhood development. In his spare time, Andrew has volunteered for the Scouts over many years – recently as programme sponsor for the piloting and launch of Squirrels – Scouts for 4- and 5-year-olds.