Adam’s story – Founder / Director of Educating the Future

Adam is the Co-Founder and Managing Director (MD) of Educating the Future, an international, youth-run, for-purpose organisation building pre-schools in Timor-Leste. In its first six years, the organisation constructed five schools, educated 500 children and has ambitious plans for growth. 

Adam describes himself as a young leader with many ideas who firmly believes young people are the greatest under utilised asset in creating social change. In seeking a mentor with Kilfinan, Adam wanted someone outside his existing network who could give him support and help him develop a new raft of skills. 

Working with a Board was new territory for Adam. He and his Kilfinan mentor concentrated on how to develop the Board, improve board engagement, and build an efficient and effective MD/board relationship. Adam successfully recruited directors to the Board using a board skills matrix and information pack for new directors he developed with his mentor’s very practical input. 

Adam also credits his mentorship for helping him achieve some excellent outcomes in risk management. Together, they identified key risks, developed mitigation plans, and his mentor provided action-oriented templates for Adam to customise. This foundational work helped resolve a critical risk: Adam’s organisation relies solely on volunteers. His mentor helped him unpack this challenge and build a sustainable volunteer pipeline. 

Adam says, “Signing up to Kilfinan was the best thing for me. My mentorship came at a time when we first received Australian government funding, and I worked with my mentor to build up our risk management, policies, governance, and board skills, along with the effectiveness of our committees. The flow-on effect from this meant that our organisation became more accountable and resilient, and ultimately delivered our program on-time and on-budget with complete adherence to our organisational policies and Australian regulation.”

After working together for two years, Adam and his mentor mutually wrapped up their formal relationship but have maintained a dialogue about issues they worked on together. Having spent his first mentorship primarily on his personal development as a leader and new MD, Adam is now working with another Kilfinan mentor to focus on growing the organisation.

At Kilfinan we offer pro-bono CEO mentoring opportunities for Australian CEOs of Not-for-profits and Charities to support great leaders to thrive and ultimately support communities better.

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Newly build preschool and playground