Sophie has taken up the post of Community Involvement Worker with Healthwatch after a long career break to raise her children. Whilst doing that, she has had volunteering experience with Healthwatch and also as a Parent Volunteer for Littlehampton Children and Family Centre. During this time she has completed NCFE distance learning courses in the Principles of Working with Individuals with Learning Disabilities and Understanding Autism. She is also a Section Leader for the Sea Scouts and lives in Littlehampton with her husband and two sons.
Cheryl is one of our Community Involvement Workers – working to engage with local groups for the ‘It Starts with You’ project. She is passionate about people being at the center of care and has wide-ranging knowledge of the health sector, gained from 17 years working within self-management and studying for a master’s degree in Health, Ethics and Society. She lives in West Sussex with her husband.
Cara is our Communications lead – working behind the social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. She has a passion for design so leads all our publication and literature designs. She lives locally in West Sussex, with her husband and baby boy.
Katrina has worked in social care within the voluntary sector for the last 11 years, after achieving a BSc (Hons) in Health and Social Care. She has in-depth knowledge of the personalisation agenda and direct payment/self-directed support. Before her studies she held a variety of HR management roles within commercial businesses, which included Direct Line Insurance in England and Scotland. Katrina and her family moved to the North of the County in 2013 and are settling in nicely to West Sussex life.
Community and Involvement Lead - Volunteer Specialism and Deputy Manager
Jo is our Community and Involvement Lead, and also deputises for Katrina. Jo leads on the recruit and support of Healthwatch volunteers across the variety of roles they undertake across West Sussex. She has worked in the voluntary and community sector for nearly 20 years. Her roles have included setting up and delivering volunteer led projects and support services, enabling her to develop skills and gain valuable volunteer management experience. Having moved from Hastings in 2006, Jo and her family now live in Worthing. In addition to her work, Jo has been an active member of Girlguiding UK for more than 10 years and holds a number of voluntary appointments including Brownie Leader, Training Coordinator and Mentor.
Advocate for Independent Health Complaints Advocacy Service
Katie is the advocate in our NHS complaints service which provides practical support and assistance to people who want to make an complaint about the NHS service they have received. Katie and her family moved to West Sussex in 1998 and has taken an active part in her local community. Helping at the local school, scout group and cricket club. Needing a new challenge Katie started a degree with The Open University, this led her to volunteer at a local children and family centre, after gaining a BSc (Hons) Health and Social Care, she worked for the Early Childhood Service in West Sussex.
Advocate Lead for Independent Health Complaints Advocacy Service
Ben is the lead advocate in our NHS complaints advocacy service which provides practical support and assistance to people who want to make an NHS complaint. Ben has previously worked for Shelter and the Citizens Advice Bureau. He lives in West Sussex and enjoys spending time with his family.
People with Lived Experience Team Supervisor & Projects
Anna’s role is to support and supervise a team of five people with lived experience of mental health services in West Sussex as part of Pathfinder, shaping and improving future services. She also leads specific follow-up projects. Anna is also Head of Centre for Worthing Counselling Centre, a charity which provides affordable counselling. Outside work, Anna is a fiction author, and is currently working on her second novel, an epic of love, religion and politics set in post WW2 Italy.
Engaging Local People Co-ordinator
After completing her ‘A’ Levels, Katie spent most of her early career travelling and learning Spanish. On returning to the UK she joined an International Bank where on moving into Compliance she discovered her a very keen eye for detail. A further promotion to Finance Administrator to one of the Directors was her most rewarding role, before leaving to start a family. Katie, who speaks proficient Spanish, enjoys spending time with her family, gardening and long walks. She moved to West Sussex in 2013.
Matthew worked for Barclays Bank for 8 years doing Senior Customer Care Administrator for International Cheques Operations. Before that he worked for The AIDIS Trust, a charity for disabilities to use computers. One of his hobbies is acting for the deaf film, he has been doing it for the past 14 years. He is currently Chair for Bournemouth Deaf Club.
Sally is responsible for supporting the Board on all matters relating to the governance of the organisation and ensuring that all contractual and statutory obligations are met. Sally has over 20 years of professional business management experience in senior roles in public, private and third sectors. Her corporate background is in Environmental and Business Management and Corporate Responsibility. In the last 10 years her senior roles have covered Health & Wellbeing, Diversity & Disability, Community Impact, CICs and Social Enterprises. She is a Trustee of a West Sussex Community Group has been a volunteer Youth Leader for over 20 years.
Chair of Board
Frances has enjoyed a long career, initially in Nursing, where she became Director of Nursing Services/Deputy Chief Executive of Richmond Twickenham and Roehampton NHS Trust, and latterly in General Management. She was appointed as Chief Executive of Sussex Weald and Downs NHS Trust in 1993 and took early retirement in 2002. Since her retirement she has been actively involved in the voluntary sector as a Trustee of Age UK West Sussex and Chairman of The Aldingbourne Trust. She was appointed as Chair of Healthwatch West Sussex in 2013. Frances has also been Chair of Governors at Chichester College and was Chair of her local Parish Council in Cocking. She has lived in West Sussex since 1996.
[Photo courtesy of West Sussex County Times]
Steven spent most of his 30 year executive working career in the IT customer services market running global divisions and business units for McDonnell Douglas (now Boeing), Northgate IS and the Dell Corporation. On leaving Dell in 2016 he joined West Sussex County Council as an independent member of their Remunerations Panel and Standards Committee and has also joined the South Downs National Park Authority as an independent member of their Standards Committee. He served a 3yr term as a Parish Councillor in Bedfordshire before returning to live in West Sussex in 2015. Steven is a qualified alpine ski coach and trainer and is also active as an executive mentor.
Jeremy is a former journalist, working on local newspapers in West Sussex and Portsmouth early in his career, and later a director of communications and engagement in the NHS. He was involved in organising community engagement and consultation on major hospital and primary care changes in London as well as working with local diverse communities and groups to ensure their voice was heard and acted upon by NHS organisations. He worked on NHS contingency plans around the 2012 Olympics and led a series of public health campaigns, working with the community to help east Londoners improve their health and well-being.
Martin Phillips BSc (Eng) is a Chartered Electrical Engineer spending over 30 years in industry with the last 15 as a main board director. After taking early retirement he spent 7 years as a non executive Director of Western Sussex NHS Foundation Hospital Trust and was initially involved in the merging of the two general hospitals in West Sussex. He also served as a Magistrate for 10 years and was chair of Relate for Brighton, Hove and Worthing for a number of years.
Martin has been a volunteer with Citizens Advice for 14 years with the last 7 as the employment specialist for West Sussex where he represents clients at Employment Tribunals. Currently he is also a volunteer advocate for Impact Advocacy assisting adults with physical and mental disabilities. He is a member of the West Sussex Safeguarding Adults Board where he represents Healthwatch. In this last role he chairs the sub group for Public Engagement.
Linda is a business leader at BT with over 20 years’ experience introducing IT solutions to clients including government and health in the UK, and internationally across 7 countries including China, India, Australia and USA. She is an advocate for learning and development and presents at UK and international conferences to raise awareness, and drive uptake, of digital innovations. Over the years Linda has supported multiple volunteer organisations including RNLI, and the Tabitha foundation helping vulnerable communities in Cambodia. Linda has studied at universities and business schools in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Hertfordshire and has an MBA, MSc IT and is a fellow of the chartered management institute.
Clerk to the Board - Part Time
Anne provides administration and clerical support for the Healthwatch West Sussex Board. Anne is a Legal Executive and has worked for several local authorities, however, the role she found the most rewarding was as a learning support mentor for a primary school pupil with a hearing impairment. She has been clerk to the governors of a local primary school since 2007. Anne has a lifelong passion for wildlife and is secretary to a local community group of volunteers who look after an area of woodland in the village where she lives. She made the move across the border from Surrey to a small village in West Sussex in 1995.
Alan is a Finance specialist and Director with over 20 years of experience at Board level. He has successfully developed and led the financial strategy and operational performance at several major NHS organisations. He also has Board level experience for Performance, Risk, Assurance and Support Services.
Helen has worked in the Rail Industry for over 24 years and was a Director of The Rail Safety and Standards Board for 8 years where she was responsible for business operations functions including Human Resources, Communications, Information Technology and Finance and Supply Chain. She delivered a number of significant business transformation projects and brings with her a broad range of skills and understanding including risk management, governance, culture change and stakeholder engagement. She is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport and has held a number of operational and business roles working for companies including Network Rail, Railtrack PLC and British Rail. Having previously lived in West Sussex for a number of years, she now lives on the Sussex/Surrey border.
After a degree in Social Administration at Nottingham University, Christine worked as a social worker in East Sussex, leaving to bring up her family of 3 children. After various charitable endeavours, she was elected to Mid Sussex District Council in 1987, where she served for 20yrs, in many roles including Chairman and Leader. Latterly, she served for 8yrs on West Sussex County Council, for much of which she had a leading role in health and social care, as HOSC chairman, Cabinet Member, Chairman of West Sussex Health and Wellbeing Board and Deputy Leader.Christine also served on Mid Downs Community Health Council and Health Authority, before being appointed Chairman of Mid Sussex NHS Trust, a combined acute, community and mental health trust, from its creation in 1992 to its merger with Brighton in 2002.Christine has held regional and national roles in the field of local government and was a Parish Councillor for 20yrs. She is now a Trustee of Friends of Sussex Hospices and a Director of her family company based in Burgess Hill offering funeral care to families across the South of England.
Mark is the Chief Executive of Help and Care, having joined as a part-time worker in 1985 when it was a three month pilot project. Over the years Mark has held a number of local, regional and national advisory roles relating to innovation in public service delivery, community engagement and organisational leadership. He was awarded the OBE in the New Year Honours list for 2003, and an Honorary Doctorate from Bournemouth University in November 2003. Mark has maintained his commitment to Community Development, with the aspiration that everyone can take part in the issues that affect their lives. He enjoys contributing to Healthwatch West Sussex as a vibrant consumer champion that supports people and communities living the lives they choose.
Emma Leatherbarrow is the Director of Partnerships at Help and Care. She brings experience from wide ranging roles in the public and third sectors which have helped her to develop an excellent knowledge base across the breadth of public policy, from waste to welfare. She has set up successful initiatives ranging from farmers markets and youth forums to the first joint Health and Wellbeing Board in England. Particular achievements include leading the development of a successful programme to turn around the lives of families with complex problems and working in partnership to help victims of domestic abuse.
People with Lived Experience (PLE)
Click here to read the latest short quarterly report, written by the PLEs to provide feedback to both Commissioners and Mental Health Alliances’ Steering Group to support with their development.
Share your story with us
Your doctor, your hospital, your mental health service, tell us what you think and help improve local services. We want to hear about your experiences and tackle the stigma around mental health. In sharing your experiences we can help others.
Caroline trained as a teacher and has taught in primary, secondary and adult education. She has worked in special educational needs and with children on the Asperger spectrum. After being primary carer for an adolescent with anxiety and depression, Caroline moved career and worked in a patient support role on a Psychiatric Intensive Care Unit. She now supports family members with dementia. Caroline is also an artist and has run community arts projects, exhibited her work and sold it through Harvey Nichols. This has taken a back seat with other demands, but Caroline relaxes by reading and doing online writing.
Marie-Anne’s professional experience is in teaching and she is currently the Vice-Chair of her local school’s governing body. Her interests in mental health stem from a desire to improve the service for children and young people and better access to services for women who suffer from perinatal and postnatal mental health issues. She is currently working towards improving awareness of mental health in schools with an emphasis on early intervention and reducing the stigma. She has worked with MIND as a Peer Mentor and is interested in setting up a support group for women who suffer from mental health issues as a result of childbirth and trauma.
Paula lives in Crawley and after 29 years in finance working with stocks and shares decided on a career change and in doing so has been able to move on to more satisfying activities in a way she never thought possible. Paula has been volunteering with mental health services since 2013, helping individuals with their journey in recovery in various areas and organisations. Being involved has given Paula back and interest in life, the opportunity and allowed her to transition back into the real world, giving her a sense of purpose.
Sarah has worked in various marketing and PR roles in the private and public sector over the last thirty years. She has recently set up as a marketing consultant to improve her work-life balance. Having been unable to access and have the support of mental health services when needed, Sarah is passionate about making improvements to the service for others. Sarah volunteers weekly at the Phoenix Stroke Club in Horsham to help people with their communication skills as well as providing publicity support to the charity. To keep herself healthy Sarah practices mindfulness, walks her dog and plays the saxophone in a big band.
Maxine lives in Felpham, Bognor Regis and had a 30 year career with the Civil Service, undertaking many different roles during that time. Maxine has Lyme disease which causes various physical, psychological and neurological problems. Since leaving work Maxine has achieved a level 2 in Working with people with mental health needs and is awaiting the result of Level 4 Peer Support Worker Training Course. She is an animal lover and has a bit of a house full.