As you can see we have a variety of experience and expertise on our board of trustees. We wanted to have a strong board of medical professionals given our objectives is to work supporting families in hospital but also advocating to improve training of health professionals on childhood cancer. We feel with the professionals we have it gives the charity credibility. All of the trustees met Sophie and know how difficult her journey was. They also know how much Sophie wanted things to change and will be driving this forward.
Gareth is Sophie's father and feels passionate about making these changes and carrying out Sophie's final wishes written on her bucket list. Gareth has worked in the IT industry for over 20 years and currently works full-time as an Analyst Programmer.
Andy studied Sports Science at University and has worked in Human Resources ever since finishing his degree. He currently works for UL Solutions which is a Global Safety Science Company. He writes the best minutes so has officially become the minute taker and is incredibly organised.
Vanessa qualified in 1998 as a children's nurse and has worked at St Mary's before moving to QA (Portsmouth Hospital) when it was built. She gave up nursing nearly four years ago to become a childminder. As a paediatric nurse with over 20 years experience we felt Vanessa knows the challenges of what families face in hospital.
Maddy has been a qualified accountant for 18 years and has been a Financial Director for a number of years. Sadly her husband Tim died in December 2020 aged 41 and Maddy is hoping to give up work to care for her two young children. Maddy loves fitness and will often be found in the gym, cycling or running! She is also one of a few volunteers I have helping me each week to sort through donations. Maddy does our charity accounts which definitely keeps her busy!
Maria qualified as a Doctor in 1992. Initially she started training as a GP and then fell in love with Paediatrics in New Zealand where she lived for a couple of years in 1995. Maria completed her postgraduate exams and became a member of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health in 1998. She then worked around Wessex area - including as a Registrar in Oncology in 2001. Maria has worked as a community paediatrician including child protection for Solent NHS trust since 2004. Charlotte met Maria when she was Adoption Medical Advisor for Southampton which she did until 2016. Maria was also the doctor that brought Sophie's first ceramic in hospital for £10 which gave her the idea to start selling them.
Karen has been qualified as a paediatric and adult nurse for 20 years. She has worked as a sister in the Emergency Department at Portsmouth Hospital and Southampton General Paediatric Cardiothoracics and PICU (Paediatric Intensive Care). For the last 4 years work she's been working in primary care GP practice as an Advanced nurse practitioner/prescriber. She's just completed her botox course so I'll know where to go to sort my wrinkles out.