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Meet the team

Tracey

Healthwatch Manager

Tracey’s working background has been very varied, ranging from project and team management roles in large computing and telecommunications corporations, to setting up and running small internet-based businesses. She also volunteered in several roles in the community, including Parish Councillor, School Governor and fundraiser for the annual Village Show. Tracey joined Healthwatch Rutland as Office Manager in April 2016 and pretty much got involved in all activities from communication and marketing through events planning, signposting, engagement and outreach, and general office support. Much of the work of Healthwatch Rutland is undertaken by volunteers – residents of Rutland who feel passionately about making sure the county gets the best possible provision for health and social care. Together with our board and volunteers Tracey’s aim as Manager is to ensure that Rutland people’s voices are heard through the collection of data and experiences, and shared with commissioners and service providers to inform decision-making.

Esther Stimpson

Esther is the lead officer for projects and engagement, joining Healthwatch Rutland on secondment for 2 days per week from Healthwatch Northamptonshire. Esther trained with the National Childbirth Trust to become a Pregnancy Birth and Beyond Practitioner and has been involved in healthcare in Northamptonshire for a number of years. She was previously the Co-Chair of Northamptonshire Breastfeeding Alliance (NBA). While in this role she has attended many meetings regarding children and families in the county and helped to raise funds to keep vital services open. Esther has also previously worked as a Youth Worker in rural Northamptonshire. While working for Healthwatch Northamptonshire Esther has successfully relaunched Young Healthwatch Northamptonshire which is now an active group of young people that actively contributes to health and social care issues locally. Esther hopes to use this experience to start a Young Healthwatch Rutland amongst other things.

Professor William Pope, Interim Chair

Professor William Pope has a wealth of experience, leadership and expertise gained from senior roles within industry, the NHS and academia, including at chairman and chief executive level. He has significant experience of working with world-leading companies and organisations including BAE Systems, the BBC, BIS, BP, British Nuclear Fuels, Ford, GlaxoSmithKline, Huawei, IBM, the NHS, Shell and Unilever, and was Chief Executive Officer of the UK’s largest integrated health, safety and environmental business for 10 years.  He has been one of the UK’s leaders in managing and developing environmental technology companies over the last 35 years, and is a four times winner of the “Technology Fast 50” awards for the fastest growing companies. Amongst other appointments he was previously director & Chairman of the East of England Regional Development Agency (2006-2012) and Northamptonshire & Milton Keynes Primary Care Trusts (2006-2013), and is now Chairman of the Board at Y&H Academic Health Science Partners (2014-date), a Board member (and now Chairman) at University Campus Suffolk (2014-date), Chairman of Healthwatch Northamptonshire (2013-date) and is a Board member (now Vice Chairman) of East Midlands Pathology (2012-date). Will was educated at St. Mary’s College, the University of Plymouth - where he was awarded the honour of “Best Student” by Prince Charles (1976) - and Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, University of London; he has a 1st class honours degree in Environmental Science (1976), and is a Chartered Environmentalist (CEnv 2004). He is a Fellow of the Institution of Environmental Sciences.

Janet Underwood, Board member

Janet grew up and has lived in Rutland nearly all her life.  On leaving school she trained to be a registered nurse but then left the profession to concentrate on a growing family. For many years Janet also helped her husband successfully run his own garage business in Whissendine, where they live.  When the business was sold Janet successfully undertook a Return to Practice Course at De Montfort University to regain Registered Nurse status. She then worked as a staff nurse at Leicester General Hospital.  Janet also studied part-time, gaining a BSc (hons) in social sciences and sociology, an MSc in Social Science Research Methods and a PhD researching the experiences of hospital visitors to NHS hospital acute wards.  Since gaining her PhD in April 2017 Janet has been involved with research and associated academic activities at the De Montfort University Health Policy Research Unit and the University of Huddersfield School of Human and Health science. Janet therefore has a major interest in all things 'healthcare' and wants to use her own knowledge and experiences to protect the healthcare interests of Rutland residents.

Kirsteen McVeigh, Board member

Kirsteen has been living in Rutland for the past thirteen years having moved from Coventry where she worked for the local authority in youth support, community education and early intervention teams, specialising in encouraging people to participate in decision making that affects their lives. Kirsteen continued that work in the areas of children’s, youth and family support for a number of years, working across Lincolnshire and Rutland, in local councils, schools and the charity HomeStart. Kirsteen now works for the Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland Carers Centre, providing training and support to GP surgeries across Leicester city, raising awareness of carers’ needs and how they can be supported through health and social care. Previously acting as a School Governor and a volunteer for a number of organisations, Kirsteen is looking forward to using her experience to support the ongoing development of Healthwatch Rutland’s work with the local community. There are many difficult challenges ahead with the NHS facing huge changes over the next few years and she feels it is vital that local people have the opportunity to have their say and be involved in decisions that will shape our local and national health services.  

Caroline Spark, Board member

Caroline works in Adult Social Services for Rutland County Council in the REACH (Rutland Enablement, Crisis Response & Health) team. She has recently completed an Open University degree with modules in Public Health, Dementia Care and Health and Social Care. She has a prior professional background in consultancy and has presented technical reports and proposals to a wide range of professionals.  Caroline strongly believes in communication between agencies and organisations to avoid wasting precious resources and has worked effectively in Multi-Disciplinary-Teams for RCC for several years. She has lived in Rutland since 2001 and has used many of its facilities (St Mary’s, Oakham Medical Practice, Rutland Memorial Hospital, Oakham Enterprise Park and the Community hub) and so understands some of the limitations and advantages of each.  She has varied interests in the health of Rutlanders from pregnancy, early years (including a particular concern for teenagers’ mental health services, CAMHS*) plus the vulnerable adults with whom she currently works. *Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service

Jacqui Darlington, Board member

Jacqui moved to Rutland in 2006 with 2 boys, one of whom has special needs. Jacqui worked as a Higher Level Teaching Assistant for a number of years at The Park School, Barleythorpe Road, Oakham working with children with Special Educational Needs (SEN). During this time, she also joined Park School’s Outreach Team. The team went into various Rutland schools to support children who required assistance to improve their literacy and numeracy skills. Jacqui then moved on to become a Special Needs Co-ordinator for The Ark Association nurseries in Oakham and the Rainbow Childcare Centres Ltd nurseries in Edith Weston and Exton. Jacqui eventually gave up paid work due to her caring responsibilities, but continued using her skills by volunteering with several organisations. These included The Ark Association nurseries in Oakham and the Rainbow Childcare Centres Ltd nurseries in Edith Weston and Exton, a parent/carer forum, Rutland Rotaract Family Support Centre, Carers UK, her GP surgery’s Patient Participation Group and Healthwatch Rutland. As well as being committed to these organisations, Jacqui has also used her skills and experience to represent the views of carers and those with Learning Disabilities at meetings with the Local Authority and other service providers and commissioners. Jacqui’s personal experience, and knowledge gained from extensive volunteering, has made Jacqui aware of the wealth of problems faced by Carers. In particular she is interested in addressing the issue of a lack of information given to Carers of adults with disabilities and special needs. As a board member of Healthwatch Rutland, she feels passionately that the views of the public need to be given to service providers and commissioners to enable positive change to happen across health and social care.

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