I have been chief executive of Coastal West Sussex Mind for the last three and a half years. Prior to that I was head of commissioning for mental health services in West Sussex and had worked in management and leadership roles in commissioning in West Sussex for the previous 10 years. Overall I have over 30 years experience in working and managing in health, social care and housing services with most of these being in mental health roles.
My passion for working in this sector has developed because of my own personal and family experiences around this. Providing great quality person centred mental health support is essential but I also believe that raising awareness and understanding around mental health in communities is vital so that any individual who is experiencing difficulties can understand and make sense of what they are experiencing and how they can help themselves, feel confident to speak openly about what they are experiencing to their friends and family and at work and also feel able to ask for help if they need it. Because of this I am a strong supporter of Time to Change and Heads Together and proud that Coastal West Sussex Mind is currently leading Time to Change West Sussex.
I also feel strongly that we will only be able to provide good mental health support to people who need it with the resources we have available if we take a whole systems approach with people who use services, carers and providers from all sectors, working collaboratively together to creatively solve problems and find solutions. That's why I am delighted to have the opportunity to take up the role of appointed governor at Sussex Partnership.
I live in Worthing and have two young adult children who have been through local schools and colleges and at times needed the support of local services. I am, therefore, really interested and committed to developing a more effective mental health offer for young people and families.
Outside of work I have a range of interests and activities I pursue including running regularly which I know helps me to stay mentally and physically healthy.