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“Since 2004 we've been achieving excellent outcomes for people across the country by providing first class partnerships between educators, communities and employers. Our programmes have gone from strength to strength - along with the organisations and people we support."

Stephanie Burras CBE, Chief Executive, Ahead Partnership

About Ahead Partnership

For over a decade, Ahead Partnership has been connecting employers with education, public and private sector partnersusing partnership as an engine for social and economic change.  


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Our Chief Executive, Stephanie Burras, left international law firm Pinsent Masons to set up social enterprise Leeds Ahead. Leeds Ahead focuses on how business can contribute more effectively to combating social and economic inequality and supports partners, social enterprises, charities and schools with a range of activities and initiatives.  


2009 goldman

With investment from Goldman Sachs we help launch their highly successful10,000 Small Businesses scheme in the UK for the benefit of over 900 businesses to date. 

Business leaders have completed in-depth training and received tailored support, with 88% of the participants growing their revenue. 




We launch Make the Grade, an annual programme of interactive activities to help schools and businesses work together to inspire, motivate and raise the aspirations of young people. 

Stephanie is appointed to the board of the Leeds City Region Local Enterprise Partnership. 


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We’re awarded £1 million Big Lottery Funding to develop and expand Make the Grade. We become Ahead Partnership and start to operate across the Leeds City Region. 

Everyone is proud as our Chief Executive is awarded a CBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List 2014. She is also appointed Chair of the Leeds City Region Employment & Skills Panel and continues this post until December 2017.


2015 selfridges bham

We launch Make the Grade in Birmingham, engaging new employer partners across the West Midlands region.




We are recognised as a #CECWhatWorks programme by the government-backed Careers & Enterprise Company, receiving a second year of funding to take our programme to even more young people across West and South Yorkshire. 

In late 2017 we were delighted to be crowned 'Best in Class' at the national British Chamber Business Awards for our business and education partnerships.

shutterstock_2898334552020 - Ahead Partnership and Q5 Popup Consultancy Support Service

The pandemic is causes significant disruption to our business supporters, ways of working and wellbeing for everyone. We also know that the uncertainty around how long this will last is undoubtedly causing stress and nervousness around what the future holds for businesses and individuals. Organisations across the country are asking themselves how they can continue to look after their people, customers and business partners through these unprecedented times.

We are proud to collaborate with management consultancy Q5 Partners on an exciting new initiative. Together, we launch the Pop up Advisory - a pro bono 1 (to 2) day intervention supporting small to medium-sized businesses and charities, who require some added help at this time. Find out more >>