Sue has been professionally linked with The Hamlet for many years, having spent her career as a paediatric physiotherapist at the Jenny Lind children’s department at the Norfolk and Norwich hospital. Sue has worked with children and young adults (from birth up to age 19, sometimes older) who had long term disabilities. This involved visiting children and their carers/families in a variety of settings, including home, school, and sometimes The Hamlet! Her role also involved a significant element of teaching, mainly to medical, physiotherapy and nursing students, but also to parents and carers.
What does Sue love about The Hamlet?
During my professional life as a paediatric physiotherapist in Norwich, I worked with many children and families, many of whom were lucky enough to receive the wonderful support provided by The Hamlet. I referred so many families in the knowledge that they would be given wonderful support, and that the children would enjoy a stimulating environment whatever their needs, and always the best of care. I know how highly valued it is, not only by the families, but also by my professional colleagues, who always had complete confidence in the high quality of care, and the commitment of the staff and volunteers at the centre.
Hester is an international development professional who was looking for an opportunity to combine her professional expertise in corporate governance, social inclusion and public policy with her personal experience of parenting a child with additional needs to support a local charity. Having recently relocated back to Norfolk with her family, becoming a trustee of the Hamlet was an ideal opportunity to do this.
Tania is a parent trustee, who has two young children with additional needs. Tania comes from an early years background and is a qualified nursery nurse. She is actively involved in supporting the children’s service, especially the Little Bee sessions. Tania has supported the development of this service in a very practical way. She also makes wonderful cakes for our numerous bake sales!
What does Tania love about The Hamlet?
I love the atmosphere that can be felt as soon as you walk through the door. It’s an atmosphere of love, care, security, compassion and a place I and my children can feel safe and where other people will really understand what I and my family are going through. I know I can share my problems and concerns in complete confidence knowing that the staff will go out of their way to help me in any way that they can. The respect and genuine concern between all the staff and parents is so evident every single day.
It’s my safe place!
Nick is a practising solicitor who has lived in Norfolk for most of his life. He is a valuable member of the board being able to cast a legal eye over how and what we are doing at board meetings.
What does Nick love about The Hamlet?
The smiling faces; the service users and their families are always happy with us.
Steven is a parent trustee, who has two daughters, one of which has additional needs and is part of ‘The Hamlet family’. Steven is well experienced with the world of charities, working for a cancer charity based in Wymondham as general manager. His work includes organising and coordinating fundraising events, recruiting and managing volunteers, overseeing finances and ensuring service users needs are well supported and fully met. Steven’s background within the work of charities and being a parent of a child with additional needs is a great asset and support on our board of trustees.
What does Steven love about The Hamlet?
I find The Hamlet to be a professionally run organisation with great values and who provide vital services to those in need. The people I have met at The Hamlet are nothing but kind, warm and friendly!
Irene has been a board member since 2012 and is now Chair of the Trustees. When Irene moved to Thorpe Hamlet she wanted to get involved with a local charity. Irene has been actively aware of disabilities from childhood because of family experiences and it was natural to want to do something to help. She used to be a member of her local Advisory Committee for Disabilities when she was an elected councillor.
Irene says, ‘As manager of the local arts centre, disability access and proactive programmes were part and parcel of what I organised. We even had a Festival one year called Celebrating Abilities. I have done many things in my life – in charities, business, local government, health – and try to bring the skills and knowledge I have acquired to making The Hamlet even better!’
What does Irene love about The Hamlet?
All the smiles - from everyone: staff, children, young people, parents and carers. Never a dull day at The Hamlet.
Stuart has been involved with The Hamlet for many years, both as a professional social worker and now as a trustee. Stuart’s experience in social care and disability brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the board.
Stuart knew our founders, Jack and Margaret Wymer very well and understands the foundations on which the charity was built.
What does Stuart love about The Hamlet?
It was my good fortune to know Margaret and Jack Wymer, founders of The Hamlet, and to work with them, particularly Margaret, for a while. I share their philosophy of involving families, minimising disability, maximising ability and providing quality care. I also worked with Margaret’s brother, Gerry Blyth, (now a patron of The Hamlet) when he was manager.
For me, the purpose of The Hamlet continues to be being positive about children and young people with disabilities, supporting families, quality care and a ‘can do’ approach.
Gary was involved with The Hamlet in 2016 when he was the architect for the reception area at Ella Road. Gary lives in Norwich with his wife and two wonderful canine friends who keep him sane when things get tough! He is a very keen cyclist, fisherman and artist.
Gary says, ‘I believe my architectural skills can be utilised in improving The Hamlet’s property, including improving the quality of the spaces for users and staff, making the buildings more energy efficient and monitoring the condition of the premises.’
What does Gary love about The Hamlet?
I have admired the commitment and care demonstrated by the staff that I have met. Witnessing the enormous impact that this has on the families that The Hamlet care for has been humbling.
Emma is a chartered accountant and provides financial expertise to the board. In her professional life, she has been an auditor of companies of all sizes. She moved into industry in 2008 and has worked in many areas including property, leisure, banking, travel and now oil and gas. The charity sector is new to Emma who wanted to get involved in a local charity.
Emma ensures that the financial reporting meets the needs of the board and uses her expertise to ensure that the board understand the reporting.
What does Emma love about The Hamlet?
That it provides its users with the possibility of being the best that they can be in a safe and welcoming environment.
Ann wants to help The Hamlet in whatever way she can. Her expertise and skills from her social work background is of great benefit to the charity. Her work spans over 40 years as a youth worker, children and families’ social worker, researcher at the UEA and now an independent social worker for family courts in care, adoption and private law proceedings in civil courts.
What does Ann love about The Hamlet?
Friendliness and opportunities for children. I knew Jack and Margaret Wymer from the early days of the Toy Library and then Margaret when she sat on Norfolk’s Adoption Panel.