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Billy McFarlane


GDA Trustee Billy McFarlane - Billy has glasses and short dark hair, and is wearing a colourful t-shirt under a dark shirt.

Billy has over 35 years of experience working in the Third Sector and all of this time has involved working closely as an ally with and to Glasgow’s Disabled People Led Organisations. He has personal experience of disability, caring for a family member, and of running a project which was entirely focused on disabled people and employability for over 20 years.  Billy brings extensive professional knowledge to GDA and specialises in Training, Employability and Volunteering for Disabled People.  He is passionate about helping disabled people gain employment and knows that the barriers faced by Disabled People particularly young people have sadly not changed in over 20 years.

Billy says “GDA plays a vital role in the city, supporting disabled people – without GDA, the access to training opportunities, access to support for Disabled People and even being able to reduce isolation would not be possible. Just look at the role GDA has played during lockdown to see how vital these services are. GDA is an amazing organisation, if it wasn’t for GDA the lives of disabled people in Glasgow would be a lot poorer.”

Billy has key Governance skills and experience including management, strategic planning, finance and project management, employment law, performance management, reporting, compliance and partnership working.

He is Engagement and Inclusion Manager at Volunteer Glasgow where he manages a team to support people to participate in volunteering opportunities, specialising in underrepresented groups.  Prior to this he managed The Wellbeing Initiative funded by the European Social Fund, covering all aspects of training for disabled people, with a focus on building skills in computing and administration, enabling progressions to SVQ in Administration and meaningful work placements.

Billy is on the Steering Group for Elevate an organisation that helps people in recovery to obtain employment. He is a former Board Member of Opening.

In his spare time Billy enjoys all things music especially ‘Gigs & Concerts’, he is a keen Partick Thistle supporter and he loves watching Movies.