The only vehicle to liberation is building an organisation that can empower the global black nation. Kehinde Andrews

Our origins

Black Thrive Global evolved from the work of the Black Thrive Lambeth partnership, which was established in 2016 to address the inequalities that negatively impact the mental health and wellbeing of Black people in Lambeth. The Black Thrive Partnership brings together individuals, local communities, statutory agencies and voluntary organisations to address the structural barriers that prevent Black people from thriving. Black people’s cumulative exposure to negative experiences and poor outcomes are not unique to Lambeth, as demonstrated by the Race Disparity Audit and global data. Intuitively Black Thrive Global was founded upon the common understanding that wherever Black people of African and Caribbean descent are located, detrimental outcomes persist. We determined that focused Black Leadership which facilitates systems change will transform the Black experience from surviving into thriving.

Our Philosophy & Approach

  • Placing Black communities at the centre
  • Collective Impact
  • Embedding race equity in systemic change
  • Decolonising the evidence landscape

Due to structural inequalities, the experiences and outcomes for Black people in White-majority countries are on average significantly worse than those of their White counterparts in every sphere of life – education, employment, income, social care, housing, policing, criminal justice, wellbeing and health. We believe that the only way forward is to centre the voices, experiences and expertise of the full spectrum of Black communities in creating the change that is needed – of the people, by the people, with the people, for the people!

Collective Impact was first described by Kania and Kramer in 2011; this approach recognises that complex social problems cannot be addressed by individual organisations acting alone, but instead, require cross-sector collaboration.

Our experience of implementing the Collective Impact model has shifted our thinking to explicitly place communities at the centre and include systems change as an intentional result. We adopt an approach that is more in line with Tamarack Institute’s Movement Building, to which we apply a Black community perspective.

From:
- Common Agenda
- Shared Measurement
- Mutually Reinforcing Activities
- Continuous Communication
- Backbone

To:
- Community Aspiration
- Strategic Learning
- High Leverage Activities
- Inclusive Community Engagement
- Containers for Change

“The most dangerous place for black people to live is in white people’s imagination.” - D. L. Hughley

The systems, and the people who work within them, consistently create environments that prevent Black people from thriving. We work with individuals and organisations to challenge the mindsets and imbalances of power which underpin policy development, the allocation of resources, and practices. Many Black people thrive in spite of the odds that are stacked against them. We change the odds by embedding race equity into systemic change and take the learning from these experiences so that thriving is not the exception but becomes the rule.

"The first need of a free people is to define their own terms" - Stokely Carmichael

Society places a strong emphasis on the need for evidence to inform policy and practice. For decades, organisations that have the most significant impact on the lives of citizens in areas such as education, health, and criminal justice have claimed that they use evidence to determine their policies and practices. However, the knowledge that is recognised and valued within western societies is often from a eurocentric perspective, therefore silencing the voices of Black people. As a result, interventions grounded in this knowledge are misguided and fail to deliver positive outcomes for Black communities. We work to disrupt the knowledge production process by critiquing existing research through a Black lens and actively contribute to the knowledge base by undertaking research that is led by Black people with academic backgrounds and/ or lived experience. This provides a foundation that enables systems to understand what can transform the Black experience from surviving to thriving.

Our Team

AllBlack Thrive GlobalBlack Thrive Lambeth
Director

Dr Jacqui Dyer MBE

Director

Lela Kogbara​

Director

Natalie Creary​

Director

David Weaver

Research Lead

Celestin Okoroji

Employment Programme and Partnerships Manager

Yasmin Ibison

Community Engagement and Communications Officer

Sadiki Harris

Community Research Coordinator

Nathaniel Martin

interim LGBTQ+ Programme and Partnerships Manager

Nathan Lewis

Employment Project Officer

Jasmine During

Interim Programme and Partnerships Manager (Adult Mental Health)

Keisha Swaby

Interim Programme and Partnerships Manager (Adult Mental Health)

Dr Shola Apena Rogers

Black Thrive Haringey

Lynette Charles

Associate, Black Thrive

Livia Whyte

Chief Operating Officer

Nicola Hurley

Quantitative Research Fellow

Jolyon Joseph Miles-Wilson

Programme and Partnerships Manager for Children, Young People and Families

Amy Woodburn

Director

Dr Jacqui Dyer MBE

Jacqui is an independent health and social care consultant, with lived experience, and a background in adult mental health commissioning as well as community and family social work. Jacqui was vice chair of England’s Mental Health Taskforce, which collaboratively developed the 5 Year Forward View for Mental Health (NHSE) and its transformation of mental health service policy and provision. Its focus on reducing mental health inequalities was further strengthened in the NHS Long Term Plan for Mental Health. Jacqui has co-led the Mayoral ‘Thrive London’ since inception. Jacqui is an elected Councillor where she is cabinet member for jobs, skills and community safety having previously jointly held the health and adult social care cabinet portfolio.

 

Director

Lela Kogbara​

Lela was a senior leader in the public sector for 25 years, 16 of which were in Islington where she was Assistant Chief Executive for the Council. She also worked with NHS England and Department for Education to improve employment prospects and access to apprenticeships for people with learning and other disabilities. She is a qualified accountant and her responsibilities have included policy, equalities, performance, arts and culture, employment, and community safety. Lela also follows her passion for social justice as a board member of a number of organisations.

Director

Natalie Creary​

Natalie is the Programme Delivery Director for Black Thrive Lambeth. The cross-sector partnership works to dismantle the structural barriers that create and sustain mental health inequalities for Black African and African-Caribbean communities in Lambeth. She has a long-standing interest in approaches that tackle the root causes of inequality and push conventional boundaries. Her interest lies in working with communities and grassroots organisations to decolonise knowledge and to create opportunities for communities to have ownership of their stories and the solutions they deliver to address the social challenges they may face. Her work and research explore how race, age, class, gender and sexuality intersect to shape the health and wellbeing experiences of Black and mixed race communities. She has also completed postgraduate studies in Health Psychology and lectures on health inequality, quality improvement methodologies and health promotion for Middlesex University’s MSc Public Health.

Director

David Weaver

David is a social and political commentator with expertise in the areas of race equality, social justice and human rights. He is senior partner of DWC Consulting – a strategic leadership consulting firm whose clients span large and small organisations, teams and individuals across the private, public, and not for profit sectors. He works across international boundaries and as well as his predominant work in the UK, he has also worked in western Europe, west Africa, the United States and Eastern Caribbean. 

His work has focused on designing, co-creating and delivering interventions that build higher levels of organisational / personal performance to achieve outstanding results. He has a strong track record in the areas of ‘top team’ and senior management development; is an experienced and qualified mediator and leads a small reputable team that focuses on conflict management, consensus building and therapeutic interventions with communities and individuals. 

David is a former political advisor to Home Office government ministers including the Rt Hon Alun Michael Deputy Home Secretary in the late 1990s. A key part of his remit was development of the government’s strategy for working with the Voluntary Sector, community cohesion and on creating the rationale for, and eventual establishment of the Macpherson Inquiry into the death of Stephen Lawrence.  He has also led large scale change investigations and inquiries on equalities for public sector bodies – his most recent being the management and publication of Bristol City Councils ‘Transforming Race and Equality’ programme which was agreed by the Council in July 2020.

David is the current and first black President of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) having previously served as a Governor / Trustee (2012 to 2016) and Vice President (from 2004 to 2009). He is a co-founder of Operation Black Vote (OBV) and is currently Independent Chair of the National Coalition of Race Equality organisations (CORE).

He holds an MSc in Human Resources Management and qualifications and specialist training relating to mediation, international conflict management, counselling, coaching, and occupational psychology. 

Research Lead

Celestin Okoroji

Celestin is the Research Lead at Black Thrive.

He is a social and cultural psychologist who completed his PhD at the London School of Economics in 2020. His research focuses on how stigmatisation impedes relations between individuals and groups, particularly in unemployment. At Black Thrive Celestin is building Black-led research capacity to fill some of the glaring holes in the empirical evidence related to interventions and outcomes for Black people.

Celestin is interested in data driven and research led approaches to improving outcomes for marginalised groups. Alongside his work at Black Thrive, Celestin is a Postdoctoral Fellow at the London School of Economics and teaches on the MSc in Social and Cultural Psychology.

Celestin’s most recent publication explores how stigmatising discourses used by political elites and media relate, longitudinally, to public attitudes towards the unemployed. The paper is openly accessible here.

Employment Programme and Partnerships Manager

Yasmin Ibison

Yasmin is the Employment Programme and Partnerships Manager at Black Thrive.

Yasmin joined Black Thrive after launching and running her own social enterprise since 2018. She is the Founder and Director of Critics’ Club, a cultural programme helping young people to engage with cultural spaces as critics. She is passionate about finding innovative solutions to complex issues, whilst ensuring that community voice and perspective is embedded into decision-making processes.

Alongside her running her own enterprise Yasmin has spent the past few years working across socially impactful organisations. From developing a strategy to launch a creative youth programme to leading a community engagement and research project, she has experience working across diverse communities and projects.

Yasmin sits on the Board at the charity Kids in Museums and The Old Vic. She holds a First-Class degree in French and Spanish from the University of Birmingham.

Community Engagement and Communications Officer

Sadiki Harris

Sadiki is Black Thrive’s Community Engagement and Communications Officer.

Since graduating, Sadiki has predominantly worked in the third sector. Between 2010 and 2014 he was vice chairman of the Lewisham Stop and Search group and in doing so created a website and marketing materials that ensured the likes of Sky News, the BBC and the Home Office would get in contact for information.

Sadiki Harris joined Black Thrive after meeting Cllr Jacqui Dyer at a Mental Health conference in 2016. Initially joining as a volunteer, he now works as Black Thrive’s Community Engagement and Communications Officer. Sadiki is responsible for engaging and involving Lambeth’s Black communities in supporting and participating in Black Thrive’s projects and programmes and becoming active leaders on various issues in Lambeth.

A son of Lambeth, an unpublished writer, avid videographer and somewhat decent graphic designer, Sadiki considers himself to be a creative and feels extremely lucky to be involved in changing the “look” and “feel” of mental health within Black communities in Lambeth.

Sadiki holds a B.A (Hons) in Marketing and Advertising from University of Arts London.

Community Research Coordinator

Nathaniel Martin

Nathaniel’s role is Community Research Coordinator.

He is an incredibly proud South Londoner. Born and raised in Brixton, Nathaniel has always been in and around the area trying to serve and build it in the best ways he can.
Nathaniel aims to develop research regarding the mental health of young people in Lambeth. Nathaniel’s role will see him amplifying the voices of young Lambeth residents in order to support their ability to thrive. With extensive experience in youth and community work through time leading youth projects and working as a BMX cycling coach, Nathaniel has engaged a variety of young people, in turn introducing them to new experiences and helping them to discover themselves.

Nathaniel is married to Annaclette, enjoys eating out with friends, and volunteers as Lead Coach at Brixton BMX Club, based in Brockwell Park.

interim LGBTQ+ Programme and Partnerships Manager

Nathan Lewis

At Black Thrive, Nathan is the interim LGBTQ+ Programme and Partnerships Manager.

His work involves influencing and supporting a research project with London Metropolitan University and Lambeth Council, as well as supporting Black the Thrive team to embed an intersectional approach to our work and wider community engagement.

Nathan is a University of Birmingham graduate and a community development enthusiast with a keen interest in public health, particularly around the experiences of Black LGBTQ+ people. He has worked across a number of fields, including mental health, sexual health, prisons and substance misuse. Currently a community manager for the Samaritans, he combines this alongside a number of charity board positions across London. He is a board member for the St Kitts and Nevis Young People’s Network and also serves as Chair for the Southwark LGBT Network and Vice Chair of the London LGBT Forum’s Network.

Employment Project Officer

Jasmine During

Jasmine is the Employment Project Officer.

After graduating with a degree in Psychology and Sociology, Jasmine spent 4 years supporting children with social, emotional and mental health needs (SEMH) – predominately within Lambeth. Striving to empower young people from disadvantaged backgrounds led her to UK Youth where she designed inclusive employability and entrepreneurship programmes and resources. Her 3-part blog on being a Black woman in Britain was commissioned by UK Youth.

Jasmine strongly believes in the power of youth-led projects. As part of the ‘Dream Team’ leading the Hope 2020 Youth Advisory Group, she successfully planned and delivered the first youth-led National Day of Hope in memory of Damilola Taylor’s life.

Born and raised in Lambeth, Jasmine gives back to her community as a Volunteer Mentor for Ashdon Jazz Academy – facilitating sessions for young girls with complex needs, and tackling issues around mental health and race. She loves sports, great music, and reading books or articles that aim to empower the African diaspora.

Interim Programme and Partnerships Manager (Adult Mental Health)

Keisha Swaby

Keisha is a multi-disciplinary Social Design and Innovation Consultant with 15 years of experience within the private and third sector. 

Keisha brings a unique combination of lived experience and learned expertise to her practice, seeking to harness the power of research, design and innovation to co-create equitable, liberatory and abundant futures.  

She is currently working with Black Thrive as an Interim Programme and Partnerships Manager (Adult Mental Health), leading on the co-design process to develop a culturally appropriate peer support and advocacy offer for Black communities in Lambeth. 

Keisha holds a Masters of Design in Social Innovation from Ravensbourne University London. Her most recent academic research entitled ‘Beneath the Skin: To Understand & Be Understood’ centred around an exploration of the ways in which Design for Social Innovation can contribute to a deeper understanding of the emotional needs of Black British young people as they transition into adulthood. 

Keisha has previously undertaken a number of CSR, fundraising, partnership management and community engagement roles; working at organisations such as HSBC, The Prince’s Trust, Deutsche Bank, Meningitis Research Foundation, FareShare, Credit Suisse, Macmillan Cancer Support and Pavement 2 Catwalk.

Keisha is also a Trustee of youth charity MAC-UK.

Interim Programme and Partnerships Manager (Adult Mental Health)

Dr Shola Apena Rogers

Shola is a qualified Forensic Psychologist and Lecturer at the University of Birmingham, with over 20 years of frontline working with communities with a focus on social justice and transforming lives. Shola has worked as a practitioner and researcher within various contexts, including the criminal justice system, Children’s Social Care and NHS to achieve impact and positive outcomes. Shola has extensive experience employing evaluation methodology and project management approaches to advise and work alongside statutory and voluntary agencies in a strength-based way. She is also a Consultant delivering Motivational Interviewing, Adolescent Mental Health and Trauma Informed Practice training programmes.

Shola is passionate in her work to support and address the inequalities across mental health, education and the criminal justice system for Black communities, with a particular focus on young people and families.

Shola is the Founder and Director of the African Caribbean Education Network (ACEN), an organisation that provides support to Black children and parents to increase schooling success and impact the number of Black people in decision-making positions in society, over the next generation.  Shola is also currently a Trustee for StreetDoctors.

Black Thrive Haringey

Lynette Charles

Lynette Charles is CEO of Mind in Haringey, where for the past 5 years she has used her extensive knowledge and experience of Mental Health and Wellbeing to lead Mind in Haringey from near closure to a position of not just surviving but thriving! In part, her success is because Lynette is absolutely grounded in what a community organisation should be doing, and how to have an impact. She’s walked the walk and remains committed. More than this, she is dedicated and works with great energy, passion, commitment and hard work to make it all possible. She’s one of those people who can command a room when she stands up and talks, but she also wants to listen, be open and be honest. She achieves the balance of being able to speak truth to power, whilst also building working alliances and relationships with other local leaders. Lynette’s passion, commitment and inspirational leadership is underpinned by 27 years spent in social care. Lynette is MHFA facilitator, Humanistic Counsellor, Coach and Psychology Graduate. Her special interests are -Young People, Mental Health, Suicide, Counselling and Spirituality.     

Associate, Black Thrive

Livia Whyte

Livia is an Associate at Black Thrive and a Project and Programme Management professional with wide experience in design, management, and consultation for some of England’s most complex organisations.

Having a father with extra needs creates a balanced approach to working partnerships as she effectively engages and understands both the needs of communities and organisational partners to ensure delivery.

Leadership Development Consultant for London’s former strategic health authority, Livia was responsible for leading several regional leadership and wellbeing programmes. This included the design of the inaugural NHS London Coaching Programme which continues to be run by NHS England.

Livia was recently invited to write an article for ‘Nursing a Nation’, an anthology of African and Caribbean contributions to Britain’s NHS. Her article “The NHS belongs to the people” raises opportunities to improve diversity and care across NHS organisations.

A Lambeth resident for much of her life, Livia was elected as a board member for resident groups, her main focus was to ensure balanced decisions were made while creating optimistic and effective partnerships across the community.

Elected Fellow of the Royal Society of the Arts and holding a Post Graduate Diploma in Applied Positive Psychology, Livia strongly supports creativity as an opportunity to engage and has designed international residency programmes.

Livia wants to address the ongoing disparities in healthcare. There are clear improvements needed across the system, which will in turn, positively transform teams and organisations and importantly, services for all those in need.

 

Chief Operating Officer

Nicola Hurley

Nicola’s mission, as part of the leadership team, is to take Black Thrive Global global, implementing systems change for Black people across the world. She’ll ensure the organisation has in place effective and efficient systems, enabling it to deliver on its strategic objectives.

Nicola has over eight years of experience in HR and operations, with an academic background in psychology. Her passion is people, wellbeing, change management and systems, taking a holistic approach to HR. She believes looking at a person holistically gets better results and increased employee engagement.

She’s also an authenticity coach, self-care enthusiast, mentor for women in prison, podcaster, and FCA-regulated personal protection advisor, bringing financial literacy to her community. Born and bred in Lambeth, she opened a retro sweet shop in the market to bring a little joy and novelty into people’s lives, which sadly shut down due to the Covid pandemic.

Nicola is an entrepreneur, previously supporting SMEs in their set up, who always keeps moving forward.

 

Quantitative Research Fellow

Jolyon Joseph Miles-Wilson

Jolyon completed his PhD at the University of Sussex in 2021 and is Black Thrive Lambeth’s Quantitative Research Fellow. His doctoral research focused on decision-making in unequal social systems and combined methods from social psychology and behavioral economics.

Jolyon focuses on developing and analysing race equality metrics to contribute to an improved understanding of the life trajectories of Black people in Britain.

 

Programme and Partnerships Manager for Children, Young People and Families

Amy Woodburn

Amy is the Programme and Partnerships Manager for Children, Young People and Families at Black Thrive Lambeth. Within this role, Amy is responsible for several projects which aim to improve outcomes for Black young people in Lambeth, including through community co-design of projects, and the engagement of Black young people in the development of services and strategies.

As a disabled, queer woman with ADHD, Amy understands the impact of multiple marginalisations and is passionate about finding creative solutions to historical challenges.

Following her psychology degree, Amy worked predominantly with children and young people with neurodevelopmental conditions in residential schools and in mental healthcare. Seeing the discrepancy in care and access for Black people led Amy to her work in SLaM (South London and Maudsley NHS Trust) with the Corporate Psychology team where she worked with the Race Equity Leadership Group and the Diversity Forum to influence systems change within Psychology and Psychotherapy.

In her spare time, she volunteers as a Girl Guide leader in a historically underserved area and plays Tag Rugby as part of a team aiming to get more African-Caribbean representation in sport. She is a classically trained pianist and is particularly interested in ways of using sport and the arts to engage young people.

She also has a master’s degree in Occupational and Organisational Psychology.



 

Associates

Individuals that develop and deliver our work

Associates

Tracey Campbell

Associates

Leila Lawton

Associates

Tyrone Osborne

Associates

David Ruebain

Associates

Anthony Salla

Associates

Jassy Denison

Associates

Margaret Gates

Associates

Tracey Campbell

Tracey Campbell is the Director and Lead Trainer of Together Transforming Behaviour Ltd.  Her company provides consultancy, training and coaching to teachers and parents, helping them to manage children’s behaviour.

She is a Behaviour Management Consultant, Coach, Trainer, Teacher, Speaker and Author of two books

Will You be the One? Touching the hearts of teachers, changing the lives of children with challenging behaviour and Behaviour Basics for Parents; Giving You the Tools from Schools.

Tracey began her career as a Primary School Teacher and quickly established herself as a positive and dynamic practitioner; renowned for her vivacious style of teaching.

Tracey’s ability to positively engage children with behaviour difficulties was quickly detected leading to her becoming one of only three Advanced Skills Teachers in Behaviour Management.

Tracey has her own moving story of multiple exclusions from school and her encounter with a supportive teacher, which she uses to inspire adults working in education; to look beyond a child’s behaviour and see the need to be a constant caring presence who conveys hope and commitment.

As a trainer Tracey is committed to and competent at motivating teachers to move ideas about behaviour management from common knowledge to common practice.  Her Will You be the One? behaviour management workshops have been described as ‘incredibly inspirational’ and ‘immensely powerful.’  These workshops featured as part of the Investing in Diversity Programme at the Institute of Education.

Her approaches to behaviour management coaching is solution focused. Tracey’s expertise and perceptiveness in this area has helped a number of teachers to successfully wade through the emotional trials of managing behaviour.

Tracey also designed and delivers the Behaviour Basics Programme for Parents.

Her programme featured in the 2014 Channel 4 documentary Mr Drew’s School for Boys. As the resident behaviour consultant on the show, Tracey led parents through her Behaviour Basics Programme with astonishing results. She later featured on ITV’s This Morning and BBC Radio 5 Live discussing the impact of her work with parents.

With over twenty years’ experience working with children and young people and as a former teacher, Tracey is passionate and unapologetic in her advocacy for children who, owing to their difficult behaviour, some say deserve love the least but she believes need love the most.

Associates

Leila Lawton

Leila is a Mum of three, an accredited Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapist, Clinical Supervisor, Equity Activist and Part time lecturer.  Additionally, she chairs the South London & Maudsley NHS Trust psychology & psychotherapy (P&P) race equity working group and is a member of the British Association for Behavioural & Cognitive Psychotherapies Equality & Culture group.

Leila’s passion for people and inclusive clinical and research practice has been cultivated through 16 years combined experience within primary, secondary care and the third sector. Enhancing effectiveness of implementation of culturally congruent therapies. 

Leila has lived experience of mental health difficulties as well as being a Carer for others with Mental health needs. Having experienced both oppression and discrimination, her lived experience ensures reflexivity, with knowledge of intersectionality and issues of power. She works to inform the evidence-base and policy to empower communities to inform the systems response to our healing.

Leila is committed to developing solutions through education to address systemic and structural racism, increasing BAME research participation and shaping policy for meaningful change. Creating equitable mental health provision for all, with a focus on Black African and Caribbean communities.

She has worked within Community Mental Health Teams, Learning Disability & Youth Offending Teams, Memory Clinics, In-patients wards and IAPT. She has developed expertise in delivering mental health training and psychotherapies.

Associates

Tyrone Osborne

​Tyrone is a Psychodynamic Psychotherapist with 9 years post qualification experience working in private practice. Prior to his qualification Tyrone gained a wealth of experience supporting the community in the educational, prison and mental health institutional settings. 

In addition, he has experience on a board of trustees for a local supplementary school which addressed the educational needs of young African and Caribbean children.  These roles consisted of providing support to some of the most marginalised communities within society who found themselves in high need of support, but with little understanding or direction on how to access it. 

Tyrone is committed to the uplift of the community with the particular interest in increasing psychological awareness of those he supports. Tyrone believes the psychotherapeutic approach increases the understanding on how perception and interpretation of events informs action. That, in becoming familiar with one’s internal dialogue and the experiences that inform them, one is better able to meet external challenges with a greater sense of confidence and agency.

Associates

David Ruebain

David was a practicing solicitor for 21 years and was Director of Legal Policy at the Equality and Human Rights Commission following a career in private practice as a Partner at and founder of the department of Education, Equality and Disability Law at Levenes Solicitors.  He has been Chief Executive of Equality Challenge Unit, a policy and research agency funded to advance equality & diversity in the UK further and higher education and research sectors. David is currently Chief Executive of the Conservatoire for Dance and Drama and also a Visiting Professor of Law at Birkbeck University of London. 

David has published widely and has a strong track record of strategy development and delivering positive change in policy and practice. He is a past Chair of the Law Society of England and Wales’s Mental Health and Disability Committee and has been a trustee and equality adviser for a range of national and international organisations including the Rights & Justice Committee of the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust, Wellcome Trust and English FA Premier League.    

David is particularly interested in allyship across identity boundaries and in addressing structural and cultural exclusion and under-representation and conflict resolution. Most recently, he co-presented two discussions at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London and at Rupert in Vilnius on Disability and Inter-Dependence and on Allyship.

David is the winner of RADAR’s People of the Year Award for Achievement in the Furtherance of Human Rights of Disabled People in the UK, 2002.  He was also shortlisted for the Law Society’s Gazette Centenary Award for Lifetime Achievement – Human Rights, in November 2003.  In August 2006, David was listed as one of 25 Most Influential Disabled People in the UK by Disability Now Magazine and in 2013, listed in the Disability News Service’s “Influence Index” and listed in the Disability Power Lists for 3 years. 

Associates

Anthony Salla

Anthony has significant experience across the field of equality more broadly, and in relation to mental health and race equality in particular. He has been involved in race equality work since 2002, and has a nuanced understanding of race and racism, including from a lived experience perspective.  

Anthony’s work has involved establishing and coordinating London-wide race equality networks and he has led initiatives to address racial prejudice in hate crime offenders. He has sound working knowledge of equality legislation and has substantial experience providing training and support to voluntary, public and private sector agencies. This includes reviews of equality management processes and tailored support to assist organisations to mitigate the effects of racial bias.

Over the last five years Anthony has been involved in coproduced work researching and developing bespoke culturally appropriate interventions for racialised minority people. He was commissioned by the Department for Health and Social Care to lead a scoping exercise, with the University of Birmingham, to make recommendations about culturally appropriate advocacy for BAME people. Similar work in this area has entailed devising and delivering community based mental health services to minoritised groups. He was also commissioned by Health Education England to explore competencies for culturally appropriate peer support. Anthony’s other work has seen him lead a Home Office initiative around contextual safeguarding in relation to learners with special educational needs in the area of extremism and radicalisation.   

In 2019 Anthony completed his thesis at the University of Nottingham looking at early intervention support for young Black people. He was a member of the African and Caribbean and the Asian and minority ethnic subgroups of the Independent Review of the Mental Health Act and he is presently a member of the data subgroup supporting the NHSE/I ‘Advancing Mental Health Equalities’ agenda and its ‘Patient and Carer Race Equality Framework’.

Associates

Jassy Denison

Jassy has over 20 years of experience as a trainer and facilitator in the field of interpersonal conflict. Her practice has focused on working with challenging behaviour, communication skills, identity and prejudice, empowering young women, group and societal dynamics, partnership working, and restorative justice. Participants have included young people and adults in education, secure estate, community, public sector and business settings.

She is an accredited mediator, supervisor, and has established peer mediation services in schools and prisons in London and across the UK.

On a personal level, Jassy has a commitment to understanding, reconciling, and working with the role and the privileges society has given her as a white, English woman. She has a particular interest in creative approaches to understanding race and racism, and building inclusive, empowered communities. During the past five years, she has been developing training, networks, and spaces for dialogue on White Awareness and Dismantling Racism within the UK and Europe, within spiritual and service provider communities.

Through her experience as a conflict practitioner, Jassy brings a range of responsive approaches to working with highly charged situations and areas of concern in order to increase understanding of self and others; improve relationships and communication skills; and increase people’s sense of power, choice and responsibility. These include models for understanding the dynamics of relationship and behaviour; directed application and self-reflection; space for challenging conversations; and processes for finding common ground and moving into action.

 

Associates

Margaret Gates

Margaret Gates is a senior manager with over 20 years of experience in Housing Needs.

She has led a number of initiatives with significant success in improving services by using analysis and redesign to achieve better outcomes for those at risk of homelessness whilst also creating a collaborative and empowering culture for staff.

Margaret has served as the Strategic Lead for several areas including Early Intervention of homelessness, Strategy, Rough Sleeping, Commissioning, Homelessness Prevention, and Advice.

Margaret has a substantial track record of success at the senior management level delivering sustainable service improvements to incomparable, accountable, and customer-facing organisations through partnership working with public, voluntary and private sector organisations. More recently Margaret chaired the Woman’s Homeless Task Group, a Co-Production group of women with lived experience to improve the service and outcomes for women presenting as homeless.

Margaret has a passion for driving strategy and change whilst keeping an eye on the detail in order to understand, drive, be creative and innovate to work collaboratively to move the frontline forward, empowering members of the community, faith groups, and third sector organisations to have information and training to prevent homelessness.

Margaret has been the Chair on multi-organisation groups during her time as senior manager– the Executive Group for Supporting People Providers, the Chair of the VAWG Housing Group and Chair of the North London Sub Region Rough Sleepers, Chair of Places for Change, and Chair of the Woman’s Homelessness Co-Production group. This has added to her extensive experience in identifying and building on synergies to improve resilience, health, wellbeing, and independence for local people, by making the service accessible to all.

 

Partners and Supporters