Gurpreet Bhatia, left, Vicky Lowe, centre and Claudia Villa-Hughes, right, have been appointed to roles at the Commonwealth Sport Foundation ©CGF

Vicky Lowe has been announced as the interim director of the Commonwealth Sport Foundation until the conclusion of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.

Lowe is one of three key appointments to the charitable foundation, alongside the new head of safeguarding Claudia Villa-Hughes and trustee Gurpreet Bhatia.

Lowe takes up her post as a secondment from her current position at leading sports-based charity, Laureus Sport for Good, where she serves as global development director.

The Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) says Lowe will bring significant charity and corporate experience to the role having held key positions at Barclays and the Saracens Sports Foundation.

Lowe is also a current Board member of UK based sport for development charity The Change Foundation.

"I am delighted to be taking on the interim executive director position for the Foundation," said Lowe.

"The opportunity for the Commonwealth Sport Movement to use the power of sport to change lives and communities is an exciting one to be a part of, and I am looking forward to making a positive impact to support the work of the Foundation."

The CGF says Villa-Hughes joins at the head of safeguarding from children’s charity Barnardo's.

Her role at Barnardo's included a specific focus on serious safeguarding incidents, hidden harm, child abuse and exploitation.

Villa-Hughes previously held roles at the International Organisation for Migration/UN Migration Agency, Learning Links and the British Red Cross.

Her position at the Commonwealth Sport Foundation will be fully funded by Oak Foundation.

"I am looking forward to taking up the head of safeguarding role and to making a meaningful contribution to the vision and mission of the Foundation," Villa-Hughes said.

"I look forward to working closely with the Foundation and the wider team at the CGF to make a significant impact across such an important area."

The CGF announced the launch of the Commonwealth Sport Foundation last year ©CGF
The CGF announced the launch of the Commonwealth Sport Foundation last year ©CGF

Bhatia joins as a new trustee after being nominated by Birmingham 2022 chair John Crabtree.

Bhatia, a solicitor and deputy lieutenant of the West Midlands, will be tasked with ensuring the Foundation and Birmingham 2022 work closely to maximise the impact of the Commonwealth Games.

"I am honoured to join the Commonwealth Sport Foundation Board of Trustees and look forward to engaging with communities to share the vision and priorities of the Foundation," Bhatia said.

"As the nominee of the Birmingham 2022 chair, I hope to further strengthen the relationship between the Foundation and the Organising Committee to ensure a successful partnership in the lead up to the Games."

He joins the Foundation’s Board of Trustees led by chair Christian Brodie and vice-chair Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson.

The Board also includes CGF President Dame Louise Martin, vice-president Chris Jenkins, who leads the CGF Development Committee, and Dr Jeya Wilson.

"I am delighted that the Foundation has recruited three outstanding individuals in Vicky, Claudia and Gurpreet to help drive our work forward," said Brodie.

"We are grateful to Laureus Sport for Good for allowing Vicky to join us because her skills and experience will be vital in shaping our future direction and helping us to achieve our ambition.

"Claudia is one of the leading experts across safeguarding and we are fortunate to have her spearheading this important area of work for us as we continue to enhance and grow the Foundation.

"Gurpreet will be a fantastic addition to the Board of Trustees and play a key role in helping us ensure we maximise on our partnership with Birmingham 2022 in the lead up to the Commonwealth Games next year."

The Foundation was launched last year by the CGF.

Youth empowerment, equal rights and historical injustices are three of the five key areas the Commonwealth Sport Foundation will focus on, along with small and island states and sustainability.