Ambassadors Board and Care Experienced Advocate

Why you are motivated to be involved and support the organisation’s mission and objectives?

I lived in three children’s homes. At 14 years old, I instigated a rebellion culminating in local Councillors attending to improve conditions. I saw then the power of collective action. Accountability has always been fundamental to me. Utilising collective experience and individual voices a cornerstone of my practise, especially those called ‘hard to reach’ – the unheard of or blocked. Getting our voice heard became my focus early on. Changing the way we are viewed and altering policy and practise is the most profound impact of that action. I see Hannah achieving that in a determined effort that I see as admirable. I choose to be a part of the change. Pathways into careers are a highly significant and transformational. In the media I found no one else like me. And many barriers to inclusion. These need to go. Advocacy is a primary interest also. The children’s rights movement was shaped/driven by the various forms of abuse that many of us experienced within the care system. The same issues have sadly prevailed (despite Codes of Practise and safeguarding policies). Advocacy through a knowledge of rights is both empowering and transformational. Advocacy provides pathways into careers also. Replacing paid up advocates who speak on our behalf with CEP (lived experience) is the dream.

Role at Career Matters

Aim to assist the Ambassadors Board, advise and support in whatever way I can to the improvement of outcomes for all in our community. To help deliver national and bespoke projects.  Having worked in the media and in education, I can see the need to engage with those spheres directly and focus more specifically on the skills and career development for care experienced people. As the area of diversity is impacting hugely in these areas the care experienced community are not acknowledged or represented. Initiatives need to be put in to place to encourage people with care experience of all ages to be able to access and to be able to represent our lived experience and to express themselves as individual artists also.

Headline Experience

  • Founding member of the National Association of Young People In Care. Development Head, Advisor and Media Officer.
  • Wrote the Report ‘Sharing Care’ the first ever CEP policies and presented it to Parliament in 1982, a report that impacted profoundly on the 1989 CA.
  • Made the first ever videos by care experienced young people.
  • Board member of the Children’s Legal Centre Board, which challenged LA’s and Government on a raft of rights violations and rights establishing issues.
  • Founded the Islington Care Experienced Network. I wrote a report in 2021 advocating for reparations from LBI.
  • Founded the Care Experienced Movement which utilised abuses of the law (1989 CA) and poor practise to draw an inter-generational CE caucus.
  • Invited into the Care Review. Offered policy ideas focusing on how to bring about change in the care system through the prism of children’s rights.
  • TV Director for the BBC, HBO, ITV and Charity Video sector. Award winning film maker.
  • Educator (media production and script) at FE and HE as well as community sectors.
  • Mentor to CEP into media pathways.