Meet the Team
The team at Ups and Downs are a dedicated group of people with a variety of professional backgrounds ranging from health and social care through to education. Some members of the team have a child with Down Syndrome or other condition themselves, so have personal knowledge and experience to add to their professional role – they are well placed to relate to and support any issues or concerns you may have either as a parent or professional.
With overall responsibility for the day to day operations and strategic direction of this vibrant and busy charity, Joanna has over 18 years of experience working in the Third Sector. During this time she has managed several services in relation to children and young people as well as marginalized families.
She has a passion for development which evident across our services, in the team who deliver those services and the systems in place to ensure everything we do is quality assured and value for money.
Fundraising and Public Relations Officer.
In short, we have Michelle to blame for all the marathons, cake sales, skydiving and abseiling – if it raises our profile and much-needed funds, she will have us all doing it! Initially a family support worker, again she has been able to use her personal parenting experience for a child with Down Syndrome to the benefit of others. Michelle’s passion for Ups and Downs is simply unstoppable. Michelle heads up all of our event for families, children, and professionals, and forms vital links with our local communities and businesses.
Family Support Team Leader
Sue joined the team in September 2019 from an education background. She has held roles as a teacher, SENCO and most recently, as an advisory teacher for pupils with SEN for Somerset County Council.
She has a passion for supporting our children and young people with Down Syndrome and is keen to ensure that in all areas of support, available organisations work jointly to ensure the best outcomes for children and their families.
Finance and Administration Assistant
With over 30 years finance experience and a keen eye for detail, Jackie joined our busy team in June 2017. Working 24 hours a week, she is the backbone of our office administration, communications, and financial systems.
Family Support School Liaison Worker
Jacqueline has recently joined the team having taught in special schools and mainstream primary settings for over 30 years. She has a wealth of experience supporting parents and pupils with a range of special educational needs and can provide advice regarding educational issues and training.
Family Support Worker
As a parent of a child with Cerebral Palsy, Jackie has a wealth of experience of caring for a child with severe learning and physical disabilities. Offering one-to-one support to parents, she is able to help navigate the minefield of benefits, statements, and health care.
Family Support Worker
Catherine carries a wealth of experience in both the care and education sectors, most recently in a college support role.
Her previous experience includes Foxes, (Specialist residential provision) Springboard (SEN Playgroup), Action for Children and the Brandon Trust.
She is passionate about empowering children and young people with Special Educational Needs, supporting children and young people through times of transition and supporting and providing advice and assistance to their families.
Coming from a Psychology-based background, Maddy has worked in educational support for children with Special Educational Needs from both a school and Local Authority base.
Maddy runs our Weston-Super-Mare Youth Club and strives to give the young people a wide range of enriching and exciting experiences.
As Mum to teenager Josh who has a duel of Downs Syndrome and Autism, Sandra has been linked to Ups and Downs Southwest since quote ‘Josh was an egg’!
Sandra accompanied Josh to our Sherborne youth club sessions and very quickly became an integral part of the volunteer team supporting the children and young people.
Sandra has an expansive work background ranging from medical research to supported living for adults with learning disabilities. We are delighted that she has ‘come out of retirement’ to take on the role of Youth Worker as our Sherborne session.
Don't Be Shy. Get In Touch.
If you are interested in working together – maybe:
You would like to volunteer.
You have a fundraising idea.
You are a business that would like to work with us as your charity of the year.
send us an inquiry and we will get back to you as soon as we can!