Leeds Older People's Forum, Chief Executive
Rachel joined LOPF in 2009, becoming Chief Executive in 2015. She has been involved in the Forum’s key achievements, which include; advocating important member issues such as hospital discharge and housing; establishing a 130+ member strong alliance of Dementia Friendly organisations, and attracting 6m in funding to the city to tackle social isolation and loneliness but is most proud of LOPF being an organization that truly puts older people at the heart of all of its work.
Rachel’s scariest moment was leading a 60 strong flash (dance) mob of older people doing a hand jive to ‘We Love to Boogie’ by T-Rex in Leeds’ Victoria Quarter to raise awareness of Age Friendly issues.
PSI-Volition, Development Worker
Lucy brings a variety of experience to the role of Development Worker, having worked and volunteered in numerous third sector organisations big and small, both locally and in her native Northern Ireland. Most recently, she lead a team in a start-up social enterprise, focusing on providing sustainable employment for people with mental health difficulties.
With a degree in Law and MSc in Psychology, Lucy feels strongly about human rights, equality and inclusion, and is passionate about better mental health for all.
Outside of work, Lucy enjoys exploring Leeds’ diverse culinary offerings – as with many adopted Yorkshire folk, she has a particular soft spot for a good pie!
Karen is the Director of PSI-Volition.
Karen has worked in the third sector in Leeds for around 15 years in both small and larger organisations including Multiple Choice, East Leeds Health For All, St Anne’s Community Services and Leeds Mind. Her background is in substance use and mental health. Her experience includes a citywide strategic role managing the Dual Diagnosis Project for nearly eight years and more recently set up the Converge programme working with four higher education institutions in Leeds.
Kath’s varied career with local authorities and the civil service means she has worked in strategic roles at local, regional, national levels. She came to the third sector after a brief spell with Yorkshire Ambulance Service, going on to raise the profile of Tenfold through a major rebranding exercise, and drastically increasing the membership so it currently stands at around 100 member organisations.
“Working with people with learning disabilities is a real privilege. Even in challenging times, there is always something to smile about and I learn something new every day.”
Admin & Communications Assistant
Safia supports our admin and communications functions at Forum Central.
Safia worked in the relief sector for nearly eight years in Somalia, where her role involved planning, designing and implementing emergency and development projects that assisted communities to realise their dreams, before she moved to study in the UK.
Safia characterises herself as a ‘life student’ who easily welcomes all the experiences life brings to her.
Gillian joined Volition first as a volunteer in 2014, and then became the organisation’s administrator the following year.
Gillian has worked for the NHS and civil service previously, most recently as an information analyst with health data. She has a wealth of voluntary experience, especially in the health and care sector in Leeds. She currently volunteers with the Arts and Minds Network and Leeds Children’s Hospital Scout and Guide Group.
Gillian enjoys all things creative, from painting to jewellery making, and writing to singing with a choir. If she wasn’t working for Forum Central, she’d like to be writing and illustrating children’s books.
Sean is the communications Officer at Leeds Older People’s Forum (LOPF) and also deals with admin and office management.
He enjoys the wide variety of his role which covers things like designing reports and documents, organising meetings, putting together ebulletins, writing blogs, updating the LOPF website and social media and making sure that the office never runs out of milk.
He has worked in the third sector since 2001 first with Volition and then LOPF and is the longest serving member of the Forum Central team. Previous to this Sean had mainly worked in horticulture and also had a spell managing a newsagent shop.