A charity at the heart of our community, supporting and inspiring people to improve their health and wellbeing.


Senior Management Team

George Plenderleith, Chief Executive, George joined Improving Lives Plymouth in 1983 after completing a Certificate in Social Work at Plymouth Polytechnic. Previous to this he was a Navigation Officer in the Merchant Navy for 8 years. He started at Improving Lives Plymouth as the Development Officer for Disability Services for 13 years before becoming the Chief Executive in 1997.

He has a wealth of voluntary sector experience and has developed a range of new services for Improving Lives Plymouth. He has also been instrumental in helping set up a number of services supporting individuals and organisations in the city with other organisations.



Claire  Hill, Assistant  Chief  Executive, Claire’s interest in the voluntary sector and volunteering experience started during her degree, 20 years ago, where she volunteered for four different voluntary sector organisations. She then started her career in education as a Sociology and Psychology lecturer before joining Improving Lives Plymouth in 2004 as a Volunteering Training Development Manager. In 2005 she progressed to become the Volunteer Connections Manager leading them in their first NCVO Volunteer Connections Quality Accreditation in 2006 and introducing web base volunteer brokerage and establishing their volunteering good practice offer to organisations. She became Improving Lives Plymouths Assistant Chief Executive in 2013 and works with all Improving Lives Plymouth service areas.



Beverley Evans, Information & Advice Manager, Beverley joined Improving Lives Plymouth in February 2013. She has worked both in the public sector, for the Department of Employment and in the private sector in the Insurance industry.
Prior to joining Improving Lives Plymouth, she worked in various posts in the local authority, managing Care Direct, First Stop at the Civic Centre and more recently in Adult Social Care, working in the Adult and Older Persons Specialist Mental Health Teams.
Beverley has also spent time as a Naval Reservist and a Special Constable, and for the past 18 years has been a volunteer for Woodside Animal Welfare Trust.


Larissa Milden, Active for All Manager, Larissa joined the Improving Lives Plymouth team in 2011. Larissa has several years' experience of working within the voluntary and community sector. Previous to joining Improving Lives Plymouth, she worked for the environmental conservation charity the British Trust for conservation Volunteers (BTCV). During her time at BTCV Larissa project managed nature reserve regeneration projects across the city, as well as delivering city-wide and county-wide volunteering projects for the national youth volunteering charity 'vinvolved' and the Department of Work and Pensions. Larissa holds a level 3 ILM qualification in Leadership and Management and is trained as a Level 2 Group Exercise Instructor. Larissa also holds a Level 2 Royal Society of Public Health certificate in healthier foods and special diets.


Lee Sewrey, Caring for Carers Manager - an innovative partnership between Improving Lives Plymouth, Age UK Plymouth and Crossroads Care, Lee started his career in a supporting role in a residential care setting before moving to use his skills as a trainer and facilitator in the field of education where he taught adults with learning disabilities and worked as a Further Education Manager. A role then followed with SCOPE, the national charity charged with promoting equal opportunities for disabled people in the UK.  He progressed his interest in the learning disability sector with a move to Improving Lives Plymouth to manage the Better Futures Service. Career advancement and the opportunity to work in the private sector took him to Hampshire, where he managed a high dependency CQC-registered residential home. He then relocated to Plymouth in 2012  to develop the new Caring for Carers service.


Nikki Hornsby, Better Futures Manager, Nikki originally trained in Hotel and Catering Management. She worked in this profession for over 15 years, initially in HM Naval base as a catering supervisor and trainer, then with Devon County Council as an assistant contract manager overseeing 40 school meal operations.
Starting a family led to a career change working in customer services as part of a quality monitoring team then joining Improving Lives Plymouth in 2005 to support adults with Learning disabilities, becoming the service manager in 2010.
She is a qualified life coach, has an HND in management and a Level 3 award in Leadership and Management.
Nikki has been with Improving Lives Plymouth for over 10 years.


Chris Burnett, Operations Manager, Chris came to Improving Lives Plymouth searching for a volunteering opportunity within Plymouth and from that became one of our volunteers. He brings management experience from both the public and private sector.
Chris has been part of the Improving Lives Plymouth team since 2012; he has supported volunteers and organisations with all aspects of volunteering which include matching volunteers to a suitable role to working with organisations assisting them with the development of high quality volunteer programmes. Chris has managed the Volunteer Connections service and moved to Operations Manager in June 2018.

Julie Williams, Sensory Solutions Manager, prior to working for Sensory Solutions Julie has a careers in the travel industry. Since 2002 she has worked as a part time resource worker, Sensory Solutions Worker and since January 2019 the Manager fo Sensory Solutions.

Julie has continues to develop her knowledge of sensory loss and assistive technologies at Sensory Solutions, providing a wide range of support, knowledge and experience to our staff, volunteers and clients alike.