Why did you join as Parent Champion?

Following a turbulent childhood, I wanted to show people that all is not lost if you face mental health issues in your life.  Mental health affects so many of us and it is so important that we all share our knowledge, experiences and support. I want to let people know that it is perfectly normal to face mental health problems in your life and that you do not need to suffer. Your future is ahead of you and you can drive it in any direction that you like!

What are you most looking forward to as a champion?

I am really looking forward to helping The Anna Freud Centre make a difference in the lives of others. Even if I can just make that one person make changes in their life or feel better about their future; we are all human and we all deserve to be happy and I would really like to be a person that helps with that. 

What do you hope to achieve as a Parent Champion?

I hope to share my experiences and help people understand that there is a brighter future ahead and that they are not alone or abnormal.  It is part of human nature to face these issues and I hope to help people to make their lives better. 

What is your background?

I wanted to study law but unfortunately, I struggled at university to afford it so I joined the Civil Service and trained there.  I eventually worked for a Big 4 Accountancy Firm before being lucky enough to give up work when my second child was born. 

Can you give us a random fact about you?

I used to literally do a Madonna when I was younger, and ‘lock the bedroom door and dance when no-one else could see’.  I secretly wanted to be a dancer. Not even my husband knows about this although when I am cooking dinner and dancing along to the music, he does say I have good moves!



Why did you join as a Parent Champion? 

I wanted to take an active role to increase awareness around perinatal mental health.

What has been the best activity you have participated in so far?

I enjoyed helping a team of researchers developing a new app for people in need of support when structuring their day-to-day tasks.

What are you most looking forward to doing as a Parent Champion?

I want to make a positive contribution to the wellness and wellbeing of families and children.

What's one key thing you have learnt being a Parent Champion?

I have learnt that we all have much more in common that we think and especially parents are capable of so much resourcefulness and resilience. 

What advice would you give other parents/carers considering becoming a Parent Champion?

It’s a rewarding and empowering experience where you can get more than you expected. 



Why did you join as Parent Champion?

As a birth and adoptive mother, I have become acutely aware of the difficulty many families face trying to obtain appropriate therapy and support both for their adopted, fostered or kinship child/children and the whole family; essential for best possible outcomes. Massive problems frequently follow without this help and understanding.

What are you most looking forward to as a champion and what do you hope to achieve?

I'm looking forward to developing new skills, to representing the Centre at events and conferences, bringing many ideas for areas of need and, more broadly, to all the help and support possible in my bid to improve outcomes for complex and developmental trauma!

What is your background?

The possibility to join the Centre as a Parent Champion was most welcome. I am already involved in a project where I hope to make a difference by sharing my experience with professionals so as to improve how existing services are delivered.

Can you give us a random fact about you?

I used to run my own catering company, exhausting yet great fun!



When did you start chamoioning at AFNCCF?

I have been a parent champion for approximately four years after receiving poor mental health care in my local area. I wanted to see a positive come out of our experiences and shape future provision. 

Can you tell us more about yourself?

I am a parent to three and work within the NHS. 

Can you give us a random fact about you?

As a teenager I was once in a guard of honour for the Queen but moved at the crucial moment.



When did you start your Championing at AFNCCF?

I started on the 6th of June 2019.

Why did you join as a Parent Champion at AFNCCF? 

I joined as a Parent Champion as I really want to make a difference, to help and support others particularly children and families to thrive and develop to their full potential.  I would like opportunities to share what I have learned in life that may be of benefit to the Anna Freud Centre and providing any support and input where I can.

Throughout my younger years I pretty much always felt anxious to varying degrees.   I have learned over the year practices that I enjoy sharing so the younger generation can learn in their early years ways to help be calm, confident, deal with life’s challenges and help fulfill their full potential.    I also have a deep appreciation of how challenging it can be in becoming a new parent particularly in this day and age; we don’t have the supportive communities in place that are conducive and nurturing for bringing up a family.    

What has been your favourite activity so far?

Taking part in the interview panel for the Family Trauma Team Clinicians Interviews.

What are you most looking forward to doing as a Champion?

Discovering how I can best support the Anna Freud Centre and in that developing myself.

What do you hope to achieve in your time as a Champion?

To make mental health less of a stigma – our mental health is just as important as our physical health, we are multi-faceted and our mind and body are intrinsically interdependent.  I want mental health to be openly talked about so people share their stories, open up more and hope that mental health will be on the national school curriculum, so from early years children learn about how their mind works and how we can best use our minds to help us lead a happy, fulfilling life.

What are your future ambitions?  To learn and gain more experience at the Anna Freud Centre.

Can you give us a random fact about you?

I deliver relaxation classes to children.

What advice would you give other parents/carers  considering becoming a Parent Champion?

Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there, open up to possibilities, we each have something to offer to help and support each other. 

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