Our team

Group Photo of Resilient Communities Team

Our Team

Yiota Haralambos – Resilient Communities Programme Manager

Yiota has 15 years of experience in Community Development and Regeneration. She has been a member of the Reach team since 2011, starting as Rural Development Officer engaged communities and co-ordinated local heritage projects and events for the Rural communities of Bridgend. Yiota then took on the role of monitoring and finance in the team where she managed complex financial and performance measurements for the Reach Rural Development Programme until 2021. She then went on to work for the Valleys Regional Park to lead on operations and partnership development working across a multi-sectoral South Wales region, developing relationships with key partners and stakeholders to ensure success for the continuation of the VRP. In spring 2023 Yiota then re-joined the Reach – Resilient Communities team as programme lead to build on the successes of the previous Rural Development Programme and manage the team into establishing itself as a Borough wide community-lead programme.

Mark Blackmore – Resilient Communities Co-Ordinator

With over 12 years’ experience working for Reach, Mark is used to helping Community Groups get from initial idea to full project development.  In this current programme, Mark is looking to develop revenue projects that increase access to community facilities, design out crime by encouraging positive behaviour in our communities, and lead to impactful volunteering.  With extensive experience in Bridgend’s rural areas, Mark is now keen to develop projects in the non-rural areas that previously couldn’t access Reach support.

Rachel Morton – Resilient Communities Co-Ordinator

Rachel has a wealth of experience in community and economic regeneration. She has previously worked for the Council’s Economic Development team on social enterprise and new business start-ups. Working for over a decade in Community Regeneration for Valleys to Coast, Rachel engaged widely with residents and local groups in all parts of Bridgend on community development and environmental projects. After three years in Merthyr Tydfil as a restoration project manager, she is happy to be returning to her local area to work in the community sector. The Resilient Communities programme is proving to be a vital link for Bridgend groups to develop their projects towards sustainability.

Louise Connolly – Resilient Communities Project Development and Communications Officer

Louise has over 18 years’ experience in administration roles and office management, including 8 years’ experience as a senior administrator for an ESF funded programme, which included the monitoring and management of complex financial data.  Louise joined BCBC in 2021 as the Community Asset Transfer Assistant, supporting community groups with their CAT journey and providing funding advice.  Louise is keen to further develop her skills in community focussed project delivery.