Our Trustees

Our Charity is governed by a board of Trustees.

We are looking to develop our board of Trustees so that we can support the charity through the next stages of our strategic plans. We are currently seeking new Trustees with experience in Finance, HR, Law and Strategic Planning.

Please see our Download document for experience and skills needed. All responses in writing please to Garry Ratcliffel, Chair of Trustees.

Garry Ratcliffe- Chair of Trustees

I am Garry Ratcliffe and I am very proud to be the Chair of Trustees at We Are Beams.  I have only recently joined the Board, however, I have been involved with this inspiring charity for several years – both as a parent of disabled children who use the BEAMS payroll service and Direct Payments service – but also as a local Headteacher.  Many of the children I serve in my schools also access Beams services.

I am a dad of four awesome children. Kyle and I, my much-better-half, adopted all four children.  Three of our kids have special needs, including cerebral palsy, autism and epilepsy.  I hope I understand some of the struggles and challenges that some parents face on a daily basis – but I also hope I can appreciate the pure joy that having special children can bring.

Beams is a very special community that puts the needs of children and families at the heart of everything it does.  Staff and volunteers work tirelessly to promote the best outcomes possible for even the most vulnerable child.

Having been very fortunate in my own life, I wanted to give “something back” and joining the Board was one way.  I hope to meet many parents at a Beams event in the near future.


Terri Cox

I became a parent Trustee in March 2019. I am a full time carer to my son Ciaran who has multiple complex needs. We have accessed services by We Are Beams for a number of years, through Direct Payments, summer play schemes at Kids Camp, Family Support and Dragon’s Retreat. I am also a volunteer for a charity called Homestart, providing support for families in need of extra help, including families with children with disabilities. I also help run Little Buddies, a local club, originally for children with Down’s Syndrome which has been expanded to include all children with disabilities. I was until last year a Co-Opted School Governor at my children’s school, as well as a parent volunteer within the classroom. Before I became a full time carer for Ciaran, I was a Research Manager for a large global research organisation, specialising in Employee and Business to Business research. Prior to this, I worked as a project manager for an Education Awarding Body.

As is the case for many families I am sure, We Are Beams has supported us through the many challenges having a child with disabilities brings. As a Trustee I want to help We Are Beams continue to make a difference in our community.

Jason Jarvis

Rosemarie Neale

Rosie joined as a Trustee in 2013. She also works at another local charity called Homestart as a family Support Worker so brings with her extensive experience of working with families of disabled children. She also runs a Club for Down’s syndrome children on a monthly basis.

Rosie is a Parent Trustee and her daughter Emily is a service user.

Joanna Burton

Joanna joined as a Trustee in 2014. Joanna has a degree in Psychology working in mental health services within various community settings and later became the Deputy Project Manager of a large residential and outreach project. Following this she worked for Bexley Council, managing a children and young people’s short break service. During this time, she also returned to university to train as a counsellor and worked within Greenwich University’s student services and a London-based GP practice offering 1:1 and group counselling.

She qualified with a PGCE and is now working as a lecturer at a further education college.

Andrew Garrett