Jackie Owen |Healthwatch Manager
Jackie has substantial experience of working in Social Care & Health having qualified as a social worker in 1976 working initially with Children and Families and later specialising in dementia care. She came to Staffordshire in 1993 as a team manager of the social work team in Cannock hospital and went on to work in a number of roles including District Manager of Adult Social Care services in Cannock and South Staffordshire and later Head of Service Older People across the county.
In 2009 Jackie took voluntary redundancy from the council and took on the role of acting director of Staffordshire Local Involvement Network and remained for almost 3 years helping the LINk to develop a reputation as a thriving network giving a strong voice to the people of Staffordshire in influencing the services they receive.
After an absence of 3 ½ years working in supported housing, Jackie returned to an area of work that she loves by joining Engaging Communities Staffordshire in April 2016
Engagement & Information Lead
Carol Hewitt |Engagement & Information Lead
Carol joined Engaging Communities in 2017 after a move to Staffordshire and a career change. Carol had spent many years working in London, with nearly 20 years working in the minor metals industry which involved establishing good working relationships with people on a world-wide basis.
Carol has a strong interest in health and social care matters, instigated many decades ago when witnessing someone being treated without dignity or respect at a London hospital. Carol decided to bring this matter to the attention of the Senior Hospital Management in the hope that this sort of thing could not happen again to anyone under any circumstances.
Carol now manages the Healthwatch Staffordshire Enter & View programme alongside her many other duties. She believes that the Enter & View programme is strong and now has more impact on helping services make improvements – even a small change could make a big difference to people’s experience of services. She has introduced more research and direction to the visits and enjoys working with the dedicated team of Authorised Representatives who have a large and varied amount of knowledge and experience.
Carol tries to get to know our volunteers as individuals, to understand their areas of interest and their skills in the hope that volunteering with Healthwatch Staffordshire will be a positive experience. Healthwatch Staffordshire are increasingly reliant on volunteers and their contributions are very much appreciated.
Community Outreach Lead
Ian Wright | Community Outreach Lead
Having left North Staffs Polytechnic in 1978, Ian entered the local ceramics industry with Wedgwood. He stayed within the ceramics industry, principally at what later became Waterford Wedgwood until 2009, working as Account Manager, Sales Manager and National Accounts Manager. Following the demise of the Waterford Wedgwood group when it entered administration, Ian chose to follow a new career path, training as a Community Organiser, gaining qualifications in the Foundations of Community Organisers, Community Ideas into Action, an Introduction to Working with Vulnerable Adults, Preparing to Teach in the Lifelong Learning Sector and IT. He subsequently joined Engaging Communities in 2014 as a Community Organiser, and successfully completed a Community project in Tamworth during the first year. He also carried out many Healthwatch Staffordshire duties around the County during this period. In 2016, Ian became a Community Outreach Officer for Healthwatch Staffordshire, with responsibility for Lichfield, Tamworth and East Staffordshire. Ian has also enjoyed and involved himself in local Community work, including volunteering at a Community Hub, involvement with local charity fundraising organisations, involvement with junior cricket teams and a role as a school Governor since 2010.
Community Outreach Lead
Jo Hall / Community Outreach Lead
Jo has lengthy experience working with adults with complex needs in Stoke on Trent and across Staffordshire, and has worked in various services including residential drug services, alcohol treatment services, homelessness, sexual exploitation and offender based services. Jo has a 2:1 BSc (Hons) in Psychology and continued her professional development in 2015, undertaking a University Diploma in Leadership and Management and graduating with a Pass with Distinction.
Jo managed a 28 bed direct access hostel for homeless people and rough sleepers working with some of the most excluded people in Stoke on Trent. She also managed sexual exploitation services for adults and young people, and worked in a senior role in a service designed to support female offenders and which delivered a court ordered programme designed to reduce the need to reoffend by engaging the females with essential support services. Jo also has experience of working in a mental health support service providing crisis residential support to people who are in distress and may otherwise need a hospital admission.
More recently Jo has worked as the Seldom Heard Engagement Lead for Healthwatch Staffordshire and has engaged with Gypsies and Travelers, Refugees and Asylum Seekers, rough sleepers, and adults with mental health needs, Learning Disabilities, or substance misuse issues across the county of Staffordshire, helping to identify barriers to accessing essential services. As a result of this work Jo has developed an extensive network of professionals in services that support Seldom Heard groups of people.