Chair of the Board of Trustees (Interim)
John was a key member of the team that set up and developed the Small Charities Coalition; an organisation supporting and advocating the UK small charity sector. He was CEO at the charity from 2014-17.
John has over 10 years experience in all aspects of charity management, operations and leadership. In this - his first Chair role - he is relishing the opportunity to further develop his skills and support the setting up and growth of this exciting and important start-up.
A Qualified Corporate Treasurer with over 20 years’ experience Leading Finance Teams across Financial Services, Media, Not for Profit and FinTech industries. Also Treasurer for a local Scouts group who have recently completed a Hut Redevelopment project after securing finance through Fundraising and Grants.
Having a son Joe, now 16, who was diagnosed with Asperger’s at the age of 9 after a very long diagnostic process I am passionate about helping Children and Families with early intervention and support by being part of this exciting new charity.
When I am not working I like to spend time with my husband, 2 teenagers & 3 pugs and running in 10k & ½ Marathon events.
In 2007-8, both Gilles’ sons were diagnosed with Autism (at 2 years and 18 months respectively). As a family, they decided to do everything they could to provide the boys early professional and specialist intervention at all cost. Both boys went to a private pre-school ASD specialist nursery and went on to be admitted to an ASD specific state school at Reception. Alongside having to deal with a double dose of the usual every day Autism challenges - on virtually zero sleep for the first 5 years - Gilles' and his wife went on to become a school governor in an ASD school and to take on the local authorities in an successful attempt to a change of setting. They also embarked on a never-ending research for positive therapies that could help the boys with their development.
Having built a great network of resources and an even greater circle of influence within the world of Autism, it has now become a mission, to bring this experience to bear to help and support as many families as possible so their battles become easier, their limited resources can be optimised and their children's lives are improved beyond what would otherwise be possible.
Guided by this passion, he brings with him a pioneering vision for a comprehensive online hub that will act as a one-stop shop of high-quality resources and recommendations for any parent needing support for their autistic child in any area, and which will be one of the cornerstones of The Transforming Autism Project.
Guy grew up in Wolverhampton in the 1980s. As a child and young adult, he had many undiagnosed autistic traits, especially affecting his social awareness and understanding. This continued into his 20s, but after he began practising Heartfulness meditation aged 27, many of the adverse effects of these traits began to recede and he gained more command of his life and direction.
Now married with his own son of 8 years, who himself has autism, he has worked as a radio broadcaster, a TEFL teacher and teacher trainer, and most recently as a project manager in IT, a role he left in 2016 to establish this charity.
Early in 2016, he unexpectedly found himself writing a book, (Transforming Autism), which describes his family’s remarkable quest to support his son and transform his quality of life. Through this quest, they found some truly remarkable therapies, which have opened their eyes to the true nature of autism and to effective ways to behave towards autistic children – especially young ones – to be able to bring out the best in them.
The book was written in little more than 6 weeks, and shortly following its completion, Guy launched the Transforming Autism Project as a means of raising awareness of the true potential inherent in autism and equipping parents and carers with the tools to bring out the best in their autistic children. A major step forward in this will be taken with the establishment of a UK Mifne Clinic by 2020.
As well as meditation, Guy loves to write, and as well as his 2 books (the other - a collection of short stories - is called Leaving Town), he has also written a 6-part TV comedy series and 2 films. He also enjoys music, playing the piano (and formerly the guitar), though not to any level of technical mastery, and only his own compositions.
Strategy & Improvement Director
Cyrielle brings a wealth of business experience - specifically in digital organisation transformation and leadership. Through the Strategy and improvement role, Cyrielle will be looking to further solidify the charity strategy, identify optimisation and improvement opportunities as well as enable volunteering teams to bring these to life.
When not working Cyrielle enjoys spending time with her husband and friends, running and swimming and will soon start preparing for a triathlon in September. But before that is about to become a first-time mum in the soon future.
To Be Appointed
Director for each of our 3 divisions: Delivery, Outreach and Operations
Paula is a Marketing and Communications specialist with over 15 years’ experience working across a variety of sectors, including B2B, public sector and charity. She has worked all over the UK, as well as six months spent working in a Marketing and Donor role for an NGO in Cambodia and has created and implemented various marketing strategies for a wide range of clients.
Having recently been personally affected by ASD within her family, Paula is keen to use her expertise to help drive forward the Marketing for the Transforming Autism Project and highlight the importance of early intervention.
In her spare time, Paula likes spending time with her family and climbing the occasional mountain.
Debora is a Brand Marketing Specialist and Creative Director with extensive international experience.
Currently in London; she has also worked in Dubai and Italy and has led projects in Asia, Europe, Africa and Middle East.
For 12 years, she has been driving the brand and digital strategy of companies from various sectors, including non-profit organizations, by launching, nurturing and revitalising their brands.
When not working, she enjoys creating visual arts, such as painting and photography. She is keen to use her creative and branding skills for Transforming Autism and help achieve the global awareness it deserves.
Helen is a senior marketing professional with 20 years experience in the fast-moving consumer goods and retail sectors in Australia.
Since relocating to Switzerland she has been working on several pro bono marketing consulting projects and enjoys using her skills and experience to make positive contributions to various non-profit organisations.
Aicha has worked in Communications for over 10 years, working for a range of organisations including housing, education and financial regulation. Her main areas of specialism are corporate and employee engagement, strategy, change management and internal communications. She is keen to use her skills to help make a difference and raise awareness of the importance of early intervention.
Amanda has worked in marketing and communications for many years for a broad range of industries including the third sector (The Dogs Trust, HFMA) as well as global organisations (Virgin, Axa) and currently enjoying a specialist customer experience role within the energy industry. Amanda is really proud to be offering all the skills and experience gained from her career to date to support Transforming Autism make a difference and flourish.
Richard has run his own company, Excell Design & Marketing, since 2005 helping SMEs to plan and implement marketing and visual communications. He has also worked closely with several charities, including Grassroots Suicide Prevention creating their branding and several successful campaigns.
With wide-ranging experience in creating organisations' identities, websites, advertising and digital campaigns, exhibition and event, as well as marketing strategy and planning, Richard is passionate about his work and the results for his clients.
Having a family member with Aspergers, he recognises and champions the importance of raising awareness of The Transforming Autism Project and promoting its goals as a charity.
External Affairs Lead
Ben is a public affairs and policy professional with ten years' experience both in consultancy and in-house roles. He is experienced in producing policy briefings and managing stakeholder relations, with a thorough knowledge of the workings of Westminster and Whitehall. He provides strategic advice, support and research to the early intervention awareness raising phase of the Transforming Autism Project.
Ben is volunteering with a number of local charities. This includes the Be-Enriched charity which provide community engagement and low-cost meals across South London for local people including anyone on a low income or in need of company. He has also recently completed four years with the Wandsworth Age UK Befriending Scheme.
Aoife has previously worked in clinical healthcare in Ireland, and has experience caring for both adults and children. She has also worked in academic nursing research at University College Cork, which focused on nursing and healthcare services, with an emphasis on ensuring best practice and evidence-based care. She subsequently studied neuroscience and psychopathology in the Netherlands, and is currently conducting experimental empathy research at the University of Reading.
Oliver is an MA student at the University of York working in public policy. He holds a BA in History from the University of Warwick and was the President and Chair of the Warwick and York student think tanks respectively.
Despina is a researcher and editor. She has worked at UCL, King's College London, and as a consultant at the World Health Organization. As a freelancer, she supports effective public engagement for academia, policy, and charities.
An experienced academic and literary translator, she speaks Greek, Dutch, German and French, in addition to English. Her role in Transforming Autism is to gather evidence on early intervention,and to help raise awareness of emerging approaches to the treatment of autism.
Projects (Mifne & Hub)
Georgia is an experienced Facilities Professional with extensive international experience. She has worked in facilities for many years for a broad range of industries including government entities and global organisations. She has held various positions in Greece, Qatar, Myanmar and Bahrain and has led various facilities projects in Europe, Middle East and South East Asia.
Her role in Transforming Autism is to lead the search for the new clinic building.
When not working, she enjoys traveling and spending time with her precious dog.
Rob a qualified nurse has more than 30 years experience working within the health and social care sectors supporting both children and adults with learning disabilities and/or autism and has undertaken many Strategic, Clinical and Senior Operational roles His experience spans concept, design, development and service delivery. In 2006, at the age of 4, his son was diagnosed with ASD and ADHD.
Rob is driven by supporting individuals to experience ‘quality lifestyles’. He became Clinical Advisor to the Transforming Autism Project in August 2017 where his clear intentions are to support the Project in achievement of its mission and vision.
Jessica is training as an Integrative Child Psychotherapist and working towards UKCP registration through study and a clinical placement within a North London based primary school. Jessica is currently working with a number of children with ASD diagnosis and will be specialising in this area upon completing her studies.
She is passionate about helping children and their families to bear the pain that can result when children are in distress and need support in understanding and managing overwhelming emotions.
Jessica works using the arts to facilitate expression of emotion and to deepen understanding. Her work extends beyond individual sessions to working closely with parents, the school and external agencies to provide a holistic approach to supporting each child.
Claudio de Soussa
I am a child/young person’s counsellor, specialist educator and trainer in autism and special needs with 27 years experience working in schools (from primary to further education), charities and privately.
I am passionate about facilitating a therapeutic process for healing and positively changing the lives of autistic people and their families to discover the great potential within themselves. In therapy I work integrative and creatively, the main media of exploration and experience of healing is done with the use of the Arts. I am also skilled in managing ‘challenging behaviour’ and in non-verbal requirements,
Ruth has been working as a psychotherapist since 2009. She is an avid supporter of "the earlier the better" when working therapeutically with autism; as real change can occur when children's brains are developing.
Ruth works as a therapist with children and young people in schools, charities and privately. Her work is very diverse and she is passionate about working to help children, young people and families to feel better about themselves and in relation to others and the outside world. This is done in the context of an empathic therapeutic relationship: in a safe, caring and confidential space. She works using image, metaphor, play, the arts, the body and more, to facilitate self-awareness and healing in children and young people with various issues. She is UKCP registered and a member of BACP.
People and dance have always been a significant part of Yasmin’s life. She finds great joy in working with people and share with them meaningful moments through dance and movement.
Previously a special needs teacher (mainly autism), Yasmin is now a qualified dance-movement psychotherapist (MA) from Goldsmiths, University of London with vast experience in working with children, young people and adults. She holds a private practice in north London and works in Special needs schools around London and charities, using a holistic, dynamic and person-centred approach combining dance, play, art and music.
Respect for the children and young people she works with, their families, background and needs is a core value in her life and work.
Interim IT Lead
Randy is Interim IT Lead for The Transforming Autism Project.
He is an accomplished Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist / Professional, BCS Chartered IT Professional and Prince 2 Practitioner specialising in SharePoint and web based information systems. He has over 15 years’ experience working in and managing teams within various sectors.
Amy is an international Human Resources Leader with significant experience in virtually every aspect of the HR portfolio within the energy, financial services and construction industries. A versatile leader backed by more than 25 years of experience, she has demonstrated expertise in tackling and delivering challenging assignments in the U.S., U.K., India, and Canada with a variety of organisations including Aecon, BP, UBS, Enron and Capital One Financial.
In her free time, Amy enjoys travelling and spending time with family and friends.
Morwenna has worked in charities as an employee and volunteer for over ten years. After graduating from Cambridge, she completed an internship at The Stroke Association and a traineeship in Marketing & Administration. Morwenna ran her own business for two years, tutoring and mentoring young people.
In 2016 she began work at Teenage Cancer Trust delivering motivating and inspiring presentations on cancer awareness in schools and to professional audiences. Morwenna is an experienced stake-holder manager and builds and maintains supporter networks.
At TAP, Morwenna helps us work better as a team, delivering internal communications and constantly looking for new ways to support volunteers as our charity grows.
Dani is an experienced recruitment operations manager who has worked within the welfare to work sector and with private and public sector clients.
Dani has over 10 years recruitment experience and specialises is:
- 360 recruitment process
- Attraction and campaign management
- Engagement & selection process
- Relationship Management
- Strategic planning and budgeting
Dani has a passion for working with non profit organisations.
Organisational Development Specialist
I am an Organisation development professional, with over 20 year’s experience of global companies, professional services, public sector and start ups in the UK, Europe and the US. I’m passionate about making a difference through leading projects in organisation design, culture change, leadership development, and change management, and feel very excited about bringing this experience to Transforming Autism
I am also a script writer and budding film maker and like to bring my grasp of narrative and story-telling to my work life too.
Lulu has been working in Recruitment since 2016. She has well-rounded experience in directly sourcing and screening candidates, scheduling interviews, issuing paperwork and contributing to process improvements.
As a previous volunteer for Streetlink and Crisis at Christmas, Lulu is raring to jump back into volunteering again and make her biggest and most positive impact yet. Her sister was diagnosed with severe Autism aged 2 and a half. Hiring people who want to give their own unique contribution to the goals of TAP is also a big motivator to her commitment.
Lulu has previously lived in Scotland and England, and is planning a trip to Canada for 2018 to pursue her outdoor passions (like hiking and kayaking).
Sugandha is an HR Professional with eight years experience in Banking and FMCG industry. She has worked in India and the UAE and recently relocated to London. She has experience across an array of HR Functions including Manpower, Talent, Performance Management, Training and Development, and plans to use her skills and expertise to provide HR Support to TAP. She has previously volunteered with two NGOs in India, where she used to teach English to underprivileged kids.
Sugandha is a certified Hatha Vinayasa yoga teacher and in her spare time loves to practice and teach yoga.
Agata is fully qualified HR professional with many years experience working for third sector organisations such as Save the Children and The Children's Trust. She is skilled in delivering commercial solutions and process improvements; and coordinating and developing high-performance teams. For the last two years, Agata has worked as an ER Specialist and Employment Law consultant and her work included representation at Employment Tribunals, ACAS Early Conciliation, settlement negotiations ect. Currently studying MSc in International Human Resources Management at Kingston University, Agata will use her expertise, skills and knowledge to help develop TAP’s key HR policies and functions.
Senior Recruitment Coordinator
Maddy has several years’ experience in the charitiable, financial services and technology industries. She has managed and coordinated recruitment administration alongside delivering small HR projects and providing executive assistance at director level. She is committed to using her extensive skills and experience to support others and make valuable contributions to non-profit organisations.
Outside work, Maddy likes to keep active at the gym and as a qualified massage therapist, she enjoys helping people relax from the stresses of everyday life.
Hannah is a Digital Marketing & GDPR specialist with in-depth knowledge of both the legal aspects of GDPR and the practical steps required to support organisations on their journey to compliance.
Hannah has experience with autism in her family and understands the need and importance of the early intervention the charity supports.
Hana Keyse Abdi
Bid-writing and Admin Assistant
I've worked as a personal assistant for nearly three years alongside doing a degree in international relations at the London school of economics. I enjoy assisting busy people with tasks that help make them more efficient. I have also volunteered for a few different non-for-profit organisations and thoroughly enjoy being a part of an organisation/team that strives to help others.
Andy is a business and Executive coach, helping business owners increase their sales, make more profits and building better teams. Over last 25 years, Andy has had first-hand experience of starting, running and selling large businesses successfully, providing an excellent base to help other business owners succeed. Andy has a MBA in Strategy and Finance and has expertise in Planning, Sales & Marketing, Systemisation, Employee Engagement and Team Building.
Andy’s mission is to help business owners get more time, build better teams and improve profit margins with the help of proven strategies. Andy is looking for businesses with the potential to improve and grow and help them reach the next level. He is focussed on creating world abundance through business re-education.
Employment HR Consultant
Absolutely HR have a passion for protecting our clients, and ensuring that they get the best possible advice whatever the employee issues, on anything that impacts HR or Employment Law. We are business people in the people business.
We provide our clients with 24/7 HR and Employment Law support and advice, and where possible, we are onsite to help and assist with the issues at hand.
We offer a free initial HR Healthcheck to any potential client, which includes a review of their Contracts of Employment and Company Handbook.