Element is a social enterprise that runs creative arts projects with care leavers. We use visual art, performance art, and creative writing to explore themes relating to purpose and motivation. Our projects finish with an exhibition of participants’ art: their work has been shown at the V&A, Tate Britain and the Saatchi Gallery. Since starting in 2016 we’ve worked with 8 Local Authorities across 11 projects, working with over 90 young people. After a project, young people become part of the Element network, with access to employability and arts opportunities through our partners, and facilitated meet-ups including trips to theatres, galleries, and comedy shows.

We are a small, dynamic team with a big mission: to create spaces where care leavers can develop their creative identities and are recognised as individuals with purpose and potential. We care about raising expectations of care leavers and of the system they find themselves in.

Over 10,000 young people leave care each year in the UK. Young people are taken into care for a variety of reasons including family breakdown, abuse or neglect, and seeking asylum. Local authorities have a statutory duty to support care leavers with issues such as housing, benefits, education and employment up to the age of 25. However, budgets are under intense pressure and social workers often have neither the time, the resources or the flexibility to offer holistic forms of support to their young people. This is why Element’s work is important.

Element is run by one full-time CEO and a part-time member of staff with additional freelance and voluntary support. We have a six person strong board with a variety of expertise including a former Element participant who acts as our Young Associate. Element projects are commissioned and part-funded by local authorities. We have also been supported by national grant-giving charities including Arts Council England, Esmée Fairbairn, Unltd and the Fore Trust.

Element is seeking a: 

Programme Manager


As our programme manager you’ll be managing arts projects exploring purpose, motivation and creativity with care leavers aged 16 - 25. This means everything from prep through to delivery. This role sits at the heart of our participants’ experiences. You will work behind the scenes to ensure our projects run smoothly, as well as signing up new participants and facilitating inspiring sessions to support Element young people to express themselves creatively and build confidence. You will work closely with our CEO to improve project content and make sure our offer to care leavers and local authorities is the best that it can be. Your responsibilities will be to:

Manage the different sections of an Element project

You will keep everything running smoothly, ensuring we have the right materials at the right time; organising venues for projects; managing our freelance facilitators; and planning exciting end of project events.

Engage care leavers in Element projects

Using your great communication skills you will meet one on one with young people, get to know them as an individual, promote Element, and support them to participate in the project.

Deliver Element session content

You will be the lead facilitator on some of our projects, and part of a group’s journey from beginning to end. You will keep our sessions upbeat and engaging, while remaining sensitive to the dynamics within the group and maintaining high expectations for the young people we work with.

Promote Element with our local authority partners

You will represent Element with some of our local authority partners; presenting the project at team meetings, running structured referral collection sessions and keeping them in the loop about the project.

Manage our arts and youth partners

You will manage and expand our list of arts and youth partners, staying up to date with programmes they have available for young people, and sourcing free tickets and workshops for care leavers in our network.

Develop the Element product

Working with the rest of the Element team you will review our project content and generate new ideas that will allow Element to improve our projects and increase our impact.


You’re a boss at project management

You’ve been in charge of projects, events or programmes before. You have the operational skills to see you through slick delivery, and the experience of managing from beginning to end. 

You’re a top facilitator 

You are confident and enthusiastic when running group activities. You are great at keeping the energy high, communicating ideas clearly, and ensuring Element session content feels relevant, high-quality and fun. 

You’re thoughtful, insightful and creative

You take learnings and insights from the projects that you run, in order to rapidly problemsolve and generate better experiences with each iteration. You bring creative flair to everything that you do. 

You’ve been on the frontline

You know that working with vulnerable young people - and the adults around them - can be challenging. You have the resilience and emotional intelligence to work in an informed and sensitive way, to turn these challenges into positive action. 

You care about outcomes for care leavers

You believe that outcomes for care leavers should be no different to outcomes for other young people. You recognise the value of the arts as a tool for personal development and social change and are passionate about making creativity inclusive and accessible. 


  • Salary: £26,000 
  • Scope to take real ownership in a small, ambitious team 
  • A strong commitment to personal and professional development with a training budget of £500 per year
  • 25 days paid annual leave per year
  • Flexi-time working with strict TOIL enforcement 


Send us an email with the subject line “[Your Name] / Programme Manager Application”, attaching the following documents: 

  • Your CV
  • A cover letter of no more than 1 page telling us a bit about yourself, why you want the job and why you’d be a great candidate. 
  • A short piece of writing (no more than 250 words) sharing with us an example of a great youth project, and why you think it works. Send your application to our CEO Elo Acland at elo@elementproject.org before midnight on Monday June 25th.

There is a 4-stage selection process:

  1. Submission of application as outlined above
  2. An initial phone call (w/c 2nd July)
  3. A first round interview and activity (w/c 9th July and 16th July)
  4. A final round interview

We are an equal opportunities employer and are committed to building a team with diverse voices and experiences. Element is a GDPR compliant, Community Interest Company. Our Company Number is 10249359.

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