Safe and Sound, the local charity that specialises in supporting children, young people and families across Derbyshire who are victims of or at risk of child exploitation, has appointed a new chairperson.

Mark Richardson, a partner at commercial property agents BB&J Commercial in Derby, has been a trustee of the long-established charity since 2020 and takes over the role from previous chairperson Allen Graham.

Mr Richardson explained: “Child exploitation is an issue which many people understandably find difficult to deal with so find it easier to ignore.  Sadly, the fact is that now more than ever it is an issue that needs to be recognised.

“I have greatly valued the opportunity to learn more over the past two years about Safe and Sound’s work and was keen to take on more responsibility to lead our committed and talented board of trustees.

“My focus is to support the CEO and management team in further developing the services that we offer to help children, young people and their wider families who have been affected by child exploitation positively rebuild their lives.

“I particularly want to see Safe and Sound even further embedded within the local and regional business community.

“As business people, we all have an important role in spreading key messages across our professional networks about the increasing dangers facing young people and in supporting the charity both financially and in kind to keep our communities safe.”

Safe and Sound chief executive Tracy Harrison continued: “Our services and support to local young people and families are in greater need than ever and I remain incredibly grateful to all the professionals who give their time and expertise to Safe and Sound to help us in our work.

“Their role as the ‘guardians of purpose’ will make sure that all decisions put the needs of children, young and their families at the heart of everything we do and I am particularly looking forward to Mark’s leadership as chairperson as we continue to develop the charity.”

For more information about child exploitation, Safe and Sound’s work and how to support the charity please visit and follow on social media.