Jacqui worked as a Higher Level Teaching Assistant for a number of years before moving to Rutland in 2006 with her two sons, the youngest of whom has Down’s syndrome, Autism and very limited speech.
Jacqui joined the staff at the The Park School, Barleythorpe Road, Oakham where she worked with children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND). 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 Exton and Ryhall, 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 including the lack of information given to Carers of adults with various needs. As a board member of Healthwatch Rutland, Jacqui 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.