Sheila works as an independent consultant with public bodies like the NHS and community/voluntary organisations, helping people cope with changing situations and work out better approaches to what they do and make sure people who use services like the NHS or social services can genuinely participate in deciding what happens. She has run her own business doing this for 29 years. Sheila’s work gives her skills in helping people get involved in new things and in boosting their confidence to use their voice to change what happens. She has the business skills to understand finances and running an organisation as well as being speedy & thorough at getting things done – rather than bureaucratic!
Sheila has lived in Staunton on Wye for 5 years and so is fairly new to the county. She has been a Board member of Healthwatch Herefordshire since 2013 which has helped her get a good grasp of the local health and care system. She has had experience of the unpaid caring role in several situations and is currently especially interested in mental health issues and dementia. She relaxes by walking her dog, gardening and reading, and contributes to her local community as chair of the village hall committee and local film group.
I have been a trustee for a charity in the past but this time it’s personal. My partner has early onset vascular dementia and so over the last few years I have started on the carer journey. I wanted to contribute to HCS and to other carers before it becomes too difficult for me to take time to do this. I feel strongly that good local community organisations make for a better Herefordshire and that making efforts to put HCS on the best footing we can, in these very difficult times for charity funding, is crucial work. We need as much help as we can get to do this!
Valerie is an accountant by profession but a Carer by necessity, looking after her son who is on the Autistic spectrum. Having moved to Herefordshire in 2009 she has fully immersed herself in the local community. She is the Chair of the Autism Partnership Board, is the Vice-Chair of the Herefordshire Local Independent Advisory Group to the police force, and is involved in various other community related projects. Her main respites from her caring role are gardening, walking and reading.
Becoming a Trustee was a big decision and not to be taken lightly. I didn’t think I had it in me and wondered whether or not I would be good enough. I think these are things that everyone who hasn’t been a Trustee before would think. I have not looked back and have thoroughly enjoyed my time as a Trustee. I have even made new friends. The work can be taxing but it would be boring if it was not a challenge. Everyone is so kind and helpful which is why I am still a Trustee. As to why I became a Trustee – it was because I appreciated, being a Carer myself, what the organisation did for Carers, and wanted to help them to continue the good work.
Bernard worked for 25 years managing IT services in a global company and subsequently, 11 years as an independent practitioner in IT processes management. After retiring to Herefordshire he spent 3 years coordinating a rural Community Access Point, helping local people understand and become confident in using computers and the World Wide Web. He also helped to develop a Parish Plan for the local community and was a Neighbourhood Watch Coordinator for his village. He became a Trustee at the beginning of 2008, bringing his experience in strategic and operational planning, quality management, policy and practices and financial oversight to the Board. He recently moved to Malvern. He is currently HCS Company Secretary and Lead for Quality and Performance Management & a member of the Policy Sub Group.
I was asked to consider becoming a Trustee by my neighbour (herself then a Trustee). I hadn’t heard of Herefordshire Carers Support but when I looked into the organisation I thought it well worth helping. Ten enjoyable years later I realise how rewarding it has been to use my experience and skills for a good purpose that would otherwise have been wasted after retirement. I wasn’t a Carer at first, but became one, then an ex-Carer and am likely to become a cared-for!
John took early retirement in 2007 to look after his wife. He has been registered with Herefordshire Carers Support since 2008 and regularly attends the Adult Forum’s and open meetings. He has lived in Herefordshire all of his life and is looking to bring both caring and managerial experience to Herefordshire Carers Support. His hobbies include golf and yoga.
Like many of you reading this I was a family carer for several years before recognising myself as a carer. Life goes on then suddenly changes happen, you just do what’s required within the family and when time allows to reflect you realise how much it’s changed. When I eventually found Herefordshire Carers Support it was a breath of fresh air to realise that there are lots of you out there. I wasn’t the only one with these thoughts. As I began to have more time I wanted to repay the support and knowledge I have gained through HCS. As a trustee I hope I am helping to raise awareness of carers so as other can benefit from the support available and also how much carers contribute to the health and social care services throughout Herefordshire.
Kevin Ilsley worked as a GP in Bromyard until he retired from full-time practice in April 2010. He continues to do some part-time medical work and is Medical Advisor to Herefordshire Primary Care Trust and remains active in post-graduate medical education. Kevin is married, with three grown up children and four grandchildren. His long-standing interest in the needs of carers was stimulated by his wife’s experience as a Health Visitor for Older People.
Richard is a Registered Social Worker and has over several decades been involved in social work with a wide variety of people in different life situations.
During his first engaements with parents of children with disabilities he saw the dedication that parent carers typically exhibit and the exhaustion they have to go through to get the right diagnosis and treatment along with respite and other forms of support.
Later he worked with disabled adults and their carers and again was aware of the way in which both grouips of people often downplay the difficulties and frustrations of their daily lives.
When invited to become a trustee of HCS after 15 years as a manager and 12 years as a teacher of social work students, Richard was keen to accept the honour and do what he can to support carers-young, parent or other-as best he can.
We currently have VACANCIES on our BOARD OF TRUSTEES and would welcome any interest from Carers/Former Carers to join the Board.
Guidance on becoming a Trustee and a copy of our Articles of Association (our constitution) are available on request.
We are happy to invite applicants to meet with an existing Trustee to discuss our role and to attend a Board Meeting as an observer to see how we work.
We offer a comprehensive induction package to new Trustees and training courses are available.