Cathy Debenham


Cathy Debenham is the founder of YouGen.

The seed of the idea for YouGen was born when Cathy renovated her house in 2005. She wanted to make it as low carbon as possible. Having weighed up the alternatives she got quotes for a wood pellet boiler. None of the suppliers came to look at her house. The top and bottom prices quoted varied by £4,000, and none of the advice agencies could help her to assess the relative benefits (and enormously different prices) of the products quoted for.

Cathy gave up and bought a condensing gas boiler – but noticed a gap in the market. Happily things have improved since, and more advice is readily available (although it does vary according to where you live). However, it is still hard to take that last step, and chose your supplier.

The idea sat at the back of her mind for a while, until eventually she thought that she could put her experience in marketing, communication and journalism to better use than she was and follow her passion for finding better ways of living: YouGen was born.

Cathy continues to contribute to YouGen.

Sandra Hayes

Project Manager

Sandra is our Project Manager here at YouGen and leads our team in coordinating various aspects of the website, including its future development.

Sandra has an MA in Environmental Policy and Law, is a qualified Domestic Energy Assessor and holds an ILM Certificate Level 5 in Project Leadership in the Building Industry. She has wide-ranging experience in delivering domestic retrofit projects, including technical approaches and the development of the supply chain.

Sandra is an Associate Member of The Institute of Leadership & Management and is an experienced trainer. She has written and delivered a wide variety of sustainable energy training courses with a particular emphasis on renewable energy and fuel poverty. She has also managed European funded projects to launch Energiesprong in the UK and is the proud owner of a SuperHome.

Emily Hopkins

Marketing Manager

Emily is the Marketing Manager for YouGen focusing on the customer journey through the website and attracting new installers to join us. 

Emily has over 8 years experience in marketing having previously worked in the automotive, events and medico-legal sector. She has a passion for digital marketing, user experience and creating community through marketing. Emily has experience in delivering multi-platform campaigns to large and small audiences and ensuring users have the best experience possible when interacting with a brand.