Ben Pollard

Ben is the founder and CEO of Local Welcome, a London based charity designing technology to make it fun and easy for diverse communities to build trust by cooking and eating together. Ben began his career making documentary films with and supporting displaced communities in the UK, Bangladesh, South Sudan, and Zimbabwe. After an MA in International Relations, he worked as a consultant with international development NGOs before training as a community organiser in Washington DC and London with Citizens UK. In 2013 he co-founded a campaign to increase Syrian refugee resettlement to the UK, then in 2015, he invited 20,000 people to share a coffee with local refugees in 12 cities across the UK. Starbucks gave free coffee and space in cafes. Local Welcome grew from these small gatherings into an organisation designing inclusive rituals for diverse groups and the infrastructure needed to scale their impact.