Meet the Team
Our team are a dedicated workforce with a passion for supporting unpaid carers. Each member of the team specialises in a condition specific area to support the demand in the region. Get to know us a little better by reading our profiles.
Chief Executive Officer
Helen has worked extensively in the third sector and brings a wealth of knowledge, skills and experience to the charity. Helen is a trained counsellor, experienced in contract management and building strong partnerships.
Prior to joining us, Helen was Director of Development at Best Beginnings which is a charity supporting parents in giving their children the best start in life. Helen spent 3 years developing commissioned services around the UK and raising the profile of the charity's work at a national level. Helen has a strong background in income generation from working with Local Authorities, NHS Acute and Community Trusts and other third sector providers.
Helen also spent 4 years as the National Partnership Manager at the National Childbirth Trust (NCT) where she was instrumental in setting up peer support programmes and support groups across the UK.
Helen has been involved in delivering programmes where innovative health technology resources were used to enhance physical and mental health outcomes for vulnerable families, which were firmly mapped onto to the pathways within health and social care sector.
She is married with three children and has strong ties to the local area.
Helen’s vision is to collaborate with staff and partner agencies to build on their existing strengths and to develop and grow the organisation for a successful future.
Learning Disability Lead
Jo qualified as a Social Worker in 1999. She has worked in social care for 35 years and has extensive experience in managing adult and children’s homes. She has also been a volunteer advocate. Throughout her career she has always had a passion for supporting people with learning disabilities and continues this at the Carers Centre where she leads on aspects of support. Since joining the Carers Centre Jo has provided support to over 100 adult carers and maintains a caseload to develop best practice within the team. Jo is responsible for leading the team to deliver a quality service using a person centred approach and capturing the outcomes to demonstrate to our funders the value and impact our service provides.
Jo is also the safeguarding lead for the Carers Centre and often deals with a range of complex cases.
Adult Carer Support Worker
Chris retired from North Yorkshire County Council with over 40 years service and found himself involved with Dementia care both within his own family and in the community. Chris is a social activist for the improved recognition of dementia awareness, and has worked as volunteer and a relief team manager with the Alzheimer’s Society. To his credit and passion he has been recognised both locally and nationally for his efforts.
Chris has first-hand experience of being a carer and has provided direct support to others living with Dementia. Chris’s role with The Carers Centre enables him to support carers of all ages but particularly those living with dementia. Prior to this appointment Chris served as a Trustee for the Carers Centre for over five years.
Young Adult Carer Support Worker
Parent Carers & Autism Lead
Emma started her career working with young people attending summer camps in America, this lead her to persuing a career in youth work, her roles have involved supporting the youth justice system and vulnerable young people within the care system. Emma started working for Hambleton and Richmondshire Carers Centre in 2017 as a Young Adult Support Worker. Her role provides support to young adult carers aged between 16 to 35. This age group have very specific issues and Emma has embraced her role wholeheartedly.
Emma is a mum of one, and a military wife, this has given her a greater understanding of issues around parent carers, and living within a military setting. Emma is keen to support Carers to achieve within educational and work settings. Emma strives to promote Young Adult Carers within the community and continues to build relationships with other agencies and professionals.
Young Adult Carer Support Worker
Substance Misuse & LGBT Q+ Lead
Teresa is an experienced support worker and has developed an suite of skills to support a range of people. Before joining the Carers Centre Teresa supported people with various substance misuse issues on a one to one basis and facilitated weekly recovery groups. Using comprehensive assessment techniques Teresa had been instrumental in providing harm reduction advice to minimise risk to both the client and their family and ran a needle exchange programme. Teresa’s experience extends to working with people over the age of 65 who have mental ill health with a primary focus on preventing a relapse and maintain stability. Teresa has first-hand experience of being a carer and knows just how isolating and demanding caring situations can become. With two teenage children that keep her on her toes Teresa is able to keep in touch with young people’s culture and can relate to young people and teenagers easily.
Adult Carer Support Worker
Physical Disability Lead
Diane Wordsworth has spent most of her career working in the health sector, providing information and advice across a wide range of conditions and being “a listening ear” for people at difficult and stressful times in their lives. Diane joined the Carers Centre in 2013 as a part-time adult carer support worker. Her role involves visiting carers in their own homes (or at a location of their choice). She supports carers by giving information and advice and offering time to talk. Diane can also signpost to other appropriate organisations and guide carers through the ‘red tape’ of authority.
Adult Carer Support Worker
Ex-forces Support Lead
Diane joined us in 2017 and her role is specific to the Ex- Forces Support North Yorkshire Project; a 3 year programme to support veterans aged 65+. Diane may also support generic carer cases too.
Diane has some practical experience of caring for a family member but professionally she has a varied work history on a broad spectrum, working in Advocacy and specialising in Self-Advocacy for people with learning disabilities, ensuring a voice is heard is at the heart of her approach. More recently Diane has worked in Adult Social Care for NYCC Health and Adult Services and worked as a Social Care Coordinator locally.
Diane initially trained as a Registered Nurse for people with learning disabilities so has extensive health experience too and is able to use both health and social care knowledge in a holistic manner taking a whole family approach, as if one member requires some support then this affects others in their network of support.
Diane is very keen to promote people’s ownership and/or involvement in assessment and support pathways without forgetting about the person’s aims and objectives in all aspects of support.
Young Carers Support Worker
Mental Health Lead
Vicky started her career as a youth worker, supporting vulnerable young people within the community, she started working for Hambleton and Richmondshire Carers Centre 12 years ago as a Young Carers Support Worker. During this time she has established strong links with local Schools, as well as other professionals and organisations that work with young carers. Vicky is a strong advocate for the young people that she supports, she recognises their issues as well as the positive aspects that young carers face. As well as offering one to one support for these young people within the home or School setting, Vicky also runs groups and activities, enabling young carers to meet other young people in similar situations and have respite from their caring role.
Vicky is currently expanding her knowledge on mental health issues faced by carers of all ages, and is our lead mental health worker, a role she is undertaking with passion and enthusiasm.
Groups & Activities
Hayley qualified as a Social Worker in 2013, focusing most of her career on supporting Children and Young People through difficult times; ensuring their happiness & safety are always the priority.
Hayley has opted to work as the Groups and Activities Coordinator for Hambleton and Richmondshire Carers Centre as she strongly believes in the importance of giving young people opportunities to learn new skills, make friendship networks, and develop self-confidence to enable them to develop into well rounded adults.
Hayley’s main goals through this project are to give young carers & young adult carers more opportunities to have a break from caring, to help the young carers and young adult carers to have their voices heard by the county’s big decision makers and most importantly, to have lots of fun being young!