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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

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New head announced at leading Scots charity

This news post is over 1 year old

Takes up post on 26 September

Neil Mathers has been appointed as the new executive director of Samaritans Scotland. 

He joins the country’s leading suicide prevention charity from the learning and wellbeing organisation, Curiosity Collective, where he was chief executive.

Prior to this, he was head of Save the Children in Scotland.  

Neil has 25 years of experience within the non-profit sector in the UK and internationally and served as deputy chair of the Scottish Government’s Humanitarian Emergency Fund.   

He is co-founder and chair of Children of Songea, a Scottish-based charity that works to alleviate poverty within communities in Tanzania. He also serves as chair of Creative Stirling and Parenting across Scotland. 

Earlier this summer, Samaritans Scotland launched its new Strategic Delivery Plan with a bold ambition to reduce the numbers of lives lost to suicide and to campaign to make prevention a priority.  

Mathers said: “There is a tremendous opportunity in Scotland to bring about tangible, lasting change to ensure fewer lives are lost to suicide. Samaritans has been at the forefront of this in making sure that anyone struggling to cope has somewhere to turn to for support. 

“I am incredibly excited to join and help deliver the new strategy while working closely with our communities - and the charity’s 1000 amazing volunteers across Scotland - to make a real difference in building the compassionate and caring society we all want.”   

Mathers will take up his post on 26 September.   

Samaritans Scotland chair Amanda Millar said: “I am delighted to welcome Neil to Samaritans Scotland. Neil brings a wealth of third sector leadership experience and a passion for Samaritans work to deliver on the vision of losing fewer lives by suicide. I am thrilled to have him join and lead our fantastic, growing team in Scotland.  

“This is a time where our range of services have never been more relevant. We are also actively engaging with The Scottish Government and COSLA in the creation of a new suicide prevention strategy.”  

“We continue to engage with stakeholders, supporters and our volunteers to make a real difference in our communities and I look forward to collaborating with Neil to continue and progress that work”  



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