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About Us

The Growth Project UK was co-founded by Paul Freedman and Nicole Sorrell as a Registered Charity in 2019.  It was originally the brainchild of Australians Larry Fingleson and Peter Baines OAM.

Their inspired vision was to design a program in Australia for charity and business leaders to learn collaboratively and maximise the impact their organisations would have on the world.

100 business leaders and 100 charity leaders passed through programs in Sydney and Melbourne between 2016 and 2020.

“Hello Paul! I’ve been expecting your call”.

Larry and Paul go back over 30 years to the time when Larry was living in London. The seed was planted during a flying visit to London in 2016, when Larry shared with Paul his vision for proliferating The Growth Project outside Australia.

Fast forward to 2019, Paul was ready to take up the challenge, but needed someone to share the responsibility and the heavy lifting that lay ahead. Nicole agreed to become a founding partner of The Growth Project UK and the call was made to Larry, who answered the phone with the immortal line: “Hello Paul! I’ve been expecting your call!”

We share, respect and honour the history, vision and mission of Larry and the team in Australia while maintaining independent governance within a distinct legal entity and status as a UK Registered Charity.

70 charity and business leaders have graduated from The Growth Project UK since 2020.

Image L to R: Paul Freedman, Larry Fingleson, Nicole Sorrell

Our Mission

The Growth Project exists to Blur the Line of leadership between the for-profit and non-profit sectors.

We believe that businesses have the power and responsibility to do more good in the world.

We believe that charities will have more impact if we invest in developing their leaders.

We believe that a mind set change will only come through deep collaboration between leaders from the For Profit and Not For Profit sectors.

We believe that collaborative learning in a safe space is the most powerful enabler of deep, lasting connection.

The Team

Paul Freedman

Co-founder & CEO

An experienced entrepreneur, Paul is Founding Partner of a thriving SME advisory business based in London, England. Paul is passionate about helping small to medium size organisations achieve greater success, so it was only a small step to put his passion to work for emerging charities through a social enterprise like The Growth Project.

Nicole Sorrell

Co-Founder & Program Director

Nicole is an Organisational Psychologist with over 25 years of international experience enabling organisations to achieve greater results by igniting and leveraging their people. She is also a business entrepreneur and a Director of Lumina Learning Global. Nicole is passionate about making a difference in this world and feels that The Growth Project provides a perfect opportunity to make a broader difference in areas of most need.

Julie Besbrode


Julie has worked in the creative services industry for over 30 years, co-founding both a film content company and a 100 strong live events agency. She offers a wealth of communications experience gained from working with global brands across a wide range of industry sectors. . As well as being a trustee for The Growth Project, Julie is a trustee and advisor to The Fed (a Greater Manchester community social care charity) and was previously a trustee of Seashell (a leading autism and learning disability charity).

Graham Goodkind


Graham is Chair of our Trustees. He learnt his trade at legendary agency Lynne Franks PR, where he worked his way up through the ranks from trainee to MD. These days he provides strategic and creative guidance and also dispenses wise client counsel (given the fact he's been about for so long!).

David Bloom


David Bloom is an award-winning CFO dedicated to supporting fast growth SME's with corporate finance, operations and leadership experience built over 30+ years in digital media, technology, SaaS, recruitment and retail. David is a high energy leader with a superb track record of building high performing teams. He has a strategic approach and throughout his career has demonstrated the right balance between big picture and commercial pragmatism.

Could you be one of the 24 leaders to join our community this year?

Contact Us