Teachers called me a chatterbox and I strongly believe in the power of story-telling. Being real and honest about the joys and challenges of parenting a child with complex disabilities has had a profound impact. To date I have spoken in Parliament, national and international conferences, private company events and for local churches and charities. I endeavour to bring humour, clinical evidence and the heart beat of family life into speaking events.
For policy makers, informing them to better understand the impact of their work.
For charities and commissioners, to hear the lived experience of the families they support.
For practitioners, to shape their communication and co-productive practice through research and hearing the heart of a family’s story.
For parents, to feel connected and a little less alone.
For faith communities, that they might better help those living a broken and unexpected life.
For everyone else, understanding a little of what happens behind closed doors in order to stimulate kindness, understanding and a little more acceptance.
After writing, The Skies I’m Under, our story and my passion for effective communication, co-production and community has been shared in Parliament, local, national and international conferences. Whether on local or national radio, TV (TBN) or in person, I am passionate about using our story and personal/professional insights to inform how professionals, businesses, charities, universities, churches and local groups, support families of children with complex needs.
My speaking engagements have seen me speak alongside Amanda Batten, CEO of Contact: for families with disabled children and Sally Phillips, comedian, campaigner and parent of a child with learning disabilities. My faith is part of my story and I have contributed to church events and lead seminars with CWR and New Wine connecting with families with similar experiences as well as the wider population.
I am passionate about bridging the gap between professionals and parents, between political rhetoric and reality and between our theology and lived experience. As a person of faith, I care about the way in which we embrace life’s vulnerabilities and as a society work towards valuing all people.
Every person has a story, lives are transformed by these stories and the world would be a better place if we paid attention to the stories of the silent few.