Chair and Finance & Scrutiny committee member
How did you become involved with adoption and Adoption UK?
My wife and I started our adoption journey in 1996 – a journey that saw us take delivery of a sibling group of four pre-school children in December 1997 and a birth daughter in 2002.
A journey that after many years of trying to progress the support we needed for our family via our local authority, eventually brought us to the services provided by Adoption UK.
Any specific skills or areas of expertise relevant to the work of Adoption UK?
My years of adoptive parent experience (contested adoption, local authority adoption services, life story, school statements/appeals, CAMHS, etc), along with my business experience (12 years with Marks & Spencer followed by the last eight years in a business development role across parliament and government departments) provide a useful mix of practical adoption and business experience and expertise to support Adoption UK.
This adoption and business experience is particularly valuable, as it encompasses things that have worked well and things (as they say) that have worked less well.
How do you want to see Adoption UK develop over the next five years?
I would like to see Adoption UK championing some specific adoption areas on top of its broader agenda (e.g., in education getting “adopted” children included in the same category as “looked after children”) as well as seeing the charity increasing its profile across both the wider population and also government, so that more people are aware of the services that it offers.