SNAPS employs a number of dedicated and experienced people to help deliver its services – a Manager, and a small team of support staff, paediatric physiotherapists, swimming, dance and other instructors, and other professionals.
Lucy Owen – Chief Executive
I joined SNAPS in October 2016 having worked in the charity sector for 13 years for organisations such as ChildLine, Leeds Mencap, Leeds Rugby Foundation, Left Bank Leeds and Leeds Community Foundation. I am passionate about delivering excellent services that support children with additional needs and their families. SNAPS does just that and I love working at an organisation which delivers such vital services that families need and deserve.
I have worked as a Fundraiser for over 10 years and now specialise in Trusts and Grant Fundraising. As the Mother of a profoundly disabled child I know first hand the importance of SNAPS. I know how important friendship is to lift families and how important, rare and invaluable accessible play opportunities are. I was privileged to be one of the 6 founding families of SNAPS and I am very proud of the difference we have made to so many over the years.
I joined SNAPS in July 2018 after previously working with the Jane Tomlinson Appeal – before that, I worked for Luv2meetU, a friendship and dating agency for people with learning disabilities. My experience has given me a real appreciation for the work services like SNAPS do to support those with additional needs and I was instantly impressed by the hydrotherapy and rebound therapy sessions! My job involves working in the community to raise funds to continue this much needed service and to share the message of SNAPS within the Leeds community. I’m also here to support people taking on a challenge or organising an event to fundraise for us, so if you’re looking to do something like this, get in touch!
I joined the SNAPS team in early 2019, having worked in the charity sector for 11 years in organisations such as Brooke Action for Working Horses & Donkeys, Arthritis Research UK and most recently The Childhood Eye Cancer Trust. I am a passionate advocate for the amazing work that SNAPS does, and I am especially dedicated to building relationships with local and national businesses who want to partner with a worthwhile charity with amazing impact.
Alex Firth – Finance Manager
I’m SNAPS finance manager and joined SNAPS in 2017. I am a Chartered Accountant and work with a number of different charities in a finance capacity across the Leeds community. It is my job to ensure the finances of SNAPS are well controlled to enable SNAPS to deliver its excellent services to children with additional needs and their families.
Dean Sanderson – Manager
My name is Dean and I am the site manager for our Penny Field site in Meanwood. I was first involved with SNAPS some 13 years ago as a parent attending with a child with significant additional needs. Following the loss of our child I maintained a relationship with the charity having made many friends and also in a fundraising capacity. The relationship took a turn when I was asked to become more involved following a restructure of the charity and here I am 5 years later loving working with some amazing families, children and staff delivering much needed services to children in Leeds and the surrounds.
Becky Lackie – Support Worker
I’m a support worker at SNAPS, based at the Pennyfield site, as well as undertaking an MSc Physiotherapy degree at Leeds Beckett University. I instantly fell in love with SNAPS when I experienced how passionate and committed the team were to whole families of children with additional needs. I saw how important it was for children and their siblings to have a free space to be themselves, meet new friends and have fun. I also recognised that it is just as important for parents and relatives to have a place to sit down, have a cuppa, and meet other families in their shoes, as well as joining in on the fun of course. As an aspiring physio, it feels amazing to be part of such an incredible team and I feel honoured every Saturday to have the privilege of working for SNAPS.
Mia Donaghy – Support Worker
I am a first year BSc student at Leeds Beckett University studying physiotherapy. I love being a support worker at SNAPS as it has had such a positive impact on my own family and I want to support other families going through similar things. SNAPS helped my sister, who has Rubinstein-Taybi syndrome, find her love for dance and swimming when she was younger and allowed my parents to talk and console to other parents with children with disabilities.
Leanne Constantinou – Swimming Instructor
I’m Leanne and I’m a swim instructor at Swimbrite swimming school. I have been teaching swimming for almost 2 years and did all my training with Swimbrite. It was there that I found my passion to work with children with additional needs and was lucky enough to be offered the opportunity to work with the children at snaps. Alongside swimming, I work in a school offering support to children with autism to access mainstream education. I am also a graduate of MSc Health and Wellbeing. I adore the work I do with the kids at snaps, who never cease to amaze me with the barriers that they can overcome. My main aims in most of my work at snaps is to ensure the children have some understanding of water safety, they have a positive relationship with water and they have fun in their lessons!
- Sarah Cantwell (Broomfield)
- Laura Collins (Broomfield)
- Gina Thornton-Franklin (Penny Field)
- Juliette Neylon (Penny Field and Broomfield)
- Rachel Greenwood (Penny Field and Broomfield)
Emilie Meynell – Physiotherapist (Penny Field and Broomfield)
I am a qualified Chartered physiotherapist working in paediatrics in the NHS. I am registered with the Health and Care Professions Council and a member of the Association of Paediatric Chartered Physiotherapists. I graduated from the University of Nottingham in 2005 with a BSc (Hons) in physiotherapy. I always knew I wanted to work with children from my student days, and was fortunate to gain my first post in paediatrics back in 2007. I have worked at a variety of different hospitals including University Hospitals of Leicester, Nottinghamshire Community Health and then Sheffield Children’s Hospital in 2011, moving to Leeds to settle with my husband. I started at York Hospital as a Community Paediatric Physiotherapist in October 2014 and enjoy working as a Specialist as part of our multidisciplinary therapy team. Throughout my career I have worked with children in both the Acute and Community setting, giving me a wide range of experience. I am passionate about working with children and their families and look forward to joining the SNAPS team in 2020 to support the fantastic work the charity does.
Ann Colleran-Welsh – Physiotherapist (Penny Field)
I qualified as a physiotherapist in 2001 and have specialised in paediatrics for over 10 years. I started working at SNAPs in January 2018. I had heard so many wonderful things about the SNAPs from my colleagues and families before I joined the team. What I have experienced has surpassed my expectations, I am privileged to work with such a positive and inspirational group of people; children and their families. To work in such an environment that is warm, open, welcoming and accepting of everyone and the differences they bring to life is inspiring to see. I love to see the impact the therapy and time at SNAPs makes not only to the child but to their siblings and families.
Will Backhouse – Football Coach
I’m Will, I’m 26 and currently work in IT. I previously worked in a SEN school where I supported staff and students technology needs, particularly those who required the use of assistive technology. Ever since my time in a SEN environment I have been passionate about supporting children with additional needs. I also have a keen interest in sports and coaching, so when the opportunity arose to combine two of my passions and be involved in the SNAPS football team I jumped at the chance.
Tobias Mainwaring-Parr – Football Coach
I’m currently study A Levels at Penistone Grammar School and enjoy participating in their sporting events given the opportunity. I really enjoy volunteering at SNAPS to grow my coaching skills.
Jo Milburn – Manager
I first started working for SNAPS when the Broomfield site opened and enjoyed working as a support worker and seeing the positive impact we have on families at SNAPS. I’m grateful I now have the opportunity to work as the Broomfield site manager and to work alongside many different people. Its great to see so many people attending our sessions and meeting new faces as well as building up relationships with the families and watching friendships develop.
I have worked at SNAPS since 2018. I have several years of experience in multiple schools teaching and helping pupils progress. I love seeing kids building relationships with staff and other pupils.
Anita Tonkinson – Support Worker
I have been working with SNAPS since the Broomfield site opened. I enjoy working at Broomfield as it’s a good atmosphere and the staff and families are all wonderful. I have made many friendships since working at Broomfield.
Kathryn Collinson – Support Worker
I am currently studying my level 3 child care at the moment and I absolutely love every minute of it. The minute I got offered the job to work with SNAPS I was over the moon because I enjoy working with and helping children and their families. I love getting to know all the individual families.
Helen McGlashan – Support Worker
I have worked with children and young people in a variety of settings from a boarding school in Hertfordshire to Looked After children in Leeds. I have lived in Toronto, Canada for 12 years working as a nanny mainly with children with additional needs. I currently work as a 1:1 teaching assistant in a mainstream primary school setting.
At the present time I am a part time student at University of Leeds studying Learning and Teaching (SEND).
Jamie Tonkinson – Support Worker
I enjoy working for SNAPS and meeting all the new families. I like working in Rebound but also seeing the children enjoying the activities in the hall. I enjoy working at Broomfield and enjoy the atmosphere at Broomfield.
Paul Wade – Support Worker
I have been with SNAPS since the Broomfield site first opened. I enjoy working for SNAPS because it provides support for children with special needs, parents and siblings. Since working here I have seen many friendship made between the children as well as helping parents find a place where they can discuss any issues they are facing with other parents. I have also enjoyed seeing each week how Rebound helps the children.
Jade Lammin – Support Worker
I have 2 children, one who has had a diagnosis of autism. I am 27 and before working for SNAPS I was a parent who attended SNAPS. I enjoy working for SNAPS because I like to help people and be there if they need someone to talk to. That’s what SNAPS does – they support, listen and help.
We are fortunate to have the services of a number of volunteers, from various backgrounds, whether A-Level students, undergraduates studying physiotherapy, childhood studies, or language development, and others. We value their contribution and are able to offer a programme of training to both enhance their time with us and build skills and experience for their CV’s and futures.
Equally important is the team of people who have generously offered their time and experience to work as Trustees on the Board for SNAPS. The current Board is:
- Chris Eatwell (Chair)
- Ross McWilliams (Vice Chair)
- Paul Rowson (Vice Chair)
- Howard Pickles (Treasurer)
- Becky Wilson
- Debbie Hingerton
- Kathy Louca
- Lora Bedford
- Nicola McVennon
- Victoria Moss
- Sophie Moody
- Laura Storey
How can I help?
To start with, come along to a Saturday session, and see what a SNAPS session looks like, and meet some of the team and our wonderful families. You could volunteer to help out with our sessions, or support us behind the scenes by becoming a Trustee, or providing some other direct support. You can also fundraise for us – we are always open to new ideas!