Our Team

Meet the Team

Small team. Big impact. Get to know the HWCF team here…

The Team


James McMeekin

Chief Operating Officer

James runs the day to day operations of the Foundation, directing our dedicated and talented team. He has delivered our annual tournament since 2011.

James grew up in Germany, Belgium, Northern Ireland and England before settling in sunny Scotland.

Outside of work he loves to travel, experience new cultures and environments and can usually be found climbing or running in the mountains.


Zoë Hopkins

International Partnerships Manager

Zoë feels more at home when she’s abroad! After living and working across Asia, Europe and Latin America for over 15 years, she is happy to be adopted by Scotland.

With an academic background in sports, social sciences and international development, she was excited to join the HWCF in 2019 to pursue a passion for linking sport and development to ending homelessness.

When not working, she can be found climbing, cycling or swimming in what she says are the ‘tropical’ lochs of Scotland.


Jennifer Leak

Event Manager

Jennifer supports all activities related to events and the host communities, using her experiences from single and multi-sport events to deliver the best participant experience possible.

Growing up in Canada, Jennifer spent her time in ice rinks as a figure skater and has been able to translate that passion for sport into a career. With an MA in Sport Business, Jennifer has studied and worked across North America, the UK, and Africa (where she had her first experience with the HWC!).

When not at work Jennifer can be found spending time with friends, trying out new restaurants, and exploring the UK.

The Board


Mel Young

Co-founder and Chair

Mel is a serial social entrepreneur who founded the Homeless World Cup in 2003 with Harald Schmied. Passionate about the power of sport to change lives, he has set up various social initiatives over the years.

Mel is also an Ashoka Fellow and Senior Fellow of the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship.

He is the Chairman of Sportscotland, the national sports agency in Scotland.


Pete Irvine


Pete Irvine is a freelance event and festival organiser, and formerly the founding director of Unique Events who have created and produced many of Scotland’s major festivals and events including Edinburgh’s Hogmanay.

He is also the author of Scotland’s best selling guide book, Scotland the Best, currently in its 13th edition.


Eve Dallas-Childs


Having spent 10 years working with some of the UK’s most forward thinking independent funders, Eve is passionate about collaborating with organisations and social entrepreneurs to tackle the most entrenched social problems.

She was inspired to join the Homeless World Cup Foundation by its potential to change perceptions of people who are homeless.


Val McDermid


Val McDermid is an internationally best-selling writer, a broadcaster, an activist and the lead vocalist of the Fun Lovin’ Crime Writers. She is a lifelong fan of Raith Rovers and sponsors their home strip. She lives in Edinburgh.


Tino Nombro


 This marketing juggernaut was co-founder and CEO of Ambergreen, an Edinburgh-based digital marketing agency recently acquired by DAC in a multi-million pound deal.

In addition to spending time with his family, Tino enjoys snowboarding and wakeboarding.


Kate McCheyne


Kate has worked in the media and communications sector for more than 25 years in various roles both in-house and agency. She was PR Manager for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games and has been Head of Communications and Marketing at Sportscotland since 2015.

She has a passion for grassroots sports and the ability for sport to change lives.


Peter Barr


Peter is a writer and journalist with 40 years’ experience working in Hong Kong, Singapore and Scotland.

He has been a trustee since 2016, was Head of Communications in 2012 and is also co-author (with Mel Young) of Home Game: The Official Story of the Homeless World Cup.


Frances Ennis


Fran joined the Board in 2018 after volunteering as a Team Guide for the Belgian team at the Glasgow Homeless World Cup in 2016. She works as a commercial litigation lawyer, helping clients resolve disputes.

Outside of work, Fran is a keen football fan.


Iain McFadden


Iain is a chartered accountant living and working in Edinburgh. He has owned his own C.A. practice for 20 years acting for a wide range of small and medium sized businesses.

Iain has a strong interest in the Arts and acts for many of Scotland’s leading contemporary artists, theatre and Fringe companies.  He has also been a Trustee of several Arts charities.

He is a long-term follower of all things Scottish football; through bad times and good!