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Meet the team

Meet the team

Meet the team for the Leeds Maternity Voices Partnership... We will be adding more people over the next month or so... watch the space!

Aneira Thomas, Chair of Leeds Maternity Voices Partnership

Hi, I'm Aneira. I have recently taken over the role as Chair of Leeds Maternity Voices Partnership.

I myself am a mum to a beautiful two year old daughter and, having experienced quite a difficult birth, have developed a huge passion for developing and improving maternity services for all women and families across Leeds. I felt very privileged when I was approached and asked to step into this role, and am really looking forward to working with all the amazing professionals and parent reps involved in the MVP in shaping and developing maternity services in the city.

With a very active two year old daughter, and an amazing full-time role over at Women's Health Matters (where not only do I work on the MVP but also with Leeds Domestic Violence Service), I don't really get much down time, but when I do I love nothing more than doing a bit of arts and crafts, completing a good, challenging puzzle of some sort, or (if I'm lacking in energy) chilling out with a good murder mystery documentary on Netflix!

Julia, Leeds Maternity Voices Partnership Co-Chair

I am a Mum of two and joined the MVP in September 2019. Since joining the MVP, I have been involved in many different projects, which have included attending and supporting with the maternity and neo natal consultation event, doing a re-design for the MVP noticeboard and attended the workshop for the impact maternity cases have on midwives. I walk the patch each month, across SJUH and LGI and attend parent rep and MVP formal meetings.
I am currently training as a birth and postnatal doula and have a huge interest and passion in birth and supporting women and families.

Emily, Parent Rep

I'm Emily and I'm an Antenatal Teacher and Hypnobirthing Practitioner. I've been involved with the MVP since 2017, mostly by email and social media but face-to-face when I can (I have 4 young children, 2 are below school age). I try to help and support the MVP where I can and often feed back what parents I meet through my work have told me they experienced or felt. I feel really passionately about supporting parents towards a positive experience of birth and early parenting, and by far the biggest factor in this involves the Hospital Trust, so it really is a privilege to be involved.

Sophie, Parent Rep

Sophie is a mum to two lively young boys and a parent rep on Leeds MVP. Having experienced a really positive homebirth with her second son, she is a huge advocate of making sure that women are aware of all of the choices available to them when they give birth. Sophie also works as Customer Insight Manager for a local housing association, and brings her research expertise to the group by helping to design and analyse surveys.

Rachel, Parent Rep

Hi, I’m Rachel and have been a parent representative with Leeds MVP for about 6 months. I had my baby in Leeds just over a year ago and learnt a lot about the maternity services in Leeds. My experience was immensely positive and I hope that everyone can have as positive an experience. If my involvement can help to improve the service for future families in Leeds then it is worth it! One of my main areas of interest is making sure that the maternity services are equitable for all families. Outside of MVP I love to read but don’t get as much time to do this as I would like! If you think there’s any way the MVP can help you do please get in touch with us, as if we don’t know we can’t help!

Liz Wigley, Senior Commisioning Manager (Children's and Maternity), Leeds CCG

How long have you been in the current role?
For four years – the longest time that I’ve been in any job!

What do you enjoy about your role?
I love the opportunity to connect people together, to listen to people’s experiences, and to contribute to changes which ultimately improve the experiences and health of families in Leeds.

Can you give an example of something you have worked with the MVP on?
We have worked on lots of projects – at the moment we are refreshing the Leeds Maternity Strategy, making sure proposals for the future location of maternity services work well for all our families, responding with quick communications for the public about changes in services due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and working together to increase the number of families who feel supported to choose to have homebirths.

What do you enjoy about working with the MVP?
I really enjoy being able to listen to people’s experiences, and having the opportunity to use these stories to make changes which will have a real impact on how families experience maternity services in the future.

Sally Goodwin-Mills, Advanced Health Improvement Specialist – Infant Feeding and Maternity

How long have you been in your current role?
Nearly 14 years

What do you enjoy about your role?
I am passionate about infant feeding and improving experiences for pregnant women and new mothers, and I get to focus on this all the time! I enjoy that every day is different, I am a people person and love that I work with a wide range of professionals and families.

Can you give an example of something you have worked with the MVP on?
Over the last year or so I have been working on how Dads can feel more included with breastfeeding and what families want in terms of breastfeeding support. The MVP has supported this by sharing questionnaires among members and on social media, we received a huge number of responses which will help in shaping future developments.

What do you enjoy about working with the MVP?
The MVP is a dynamic and forward thinking group of people who work hard to make a difference, it’s great to be part of such a positive and active group.

Laura Walton, Lead Midwife Maternity Strategy

How long have you been in the current role? Since November 2018

What do you enjoy about your role?
Working with a variety of service providers, women and their families

Can you give an example of something you have worked with the MVP on?
I frequently work with the MVP, Maternity Always Event looking at infant feeding and skin to skin contact, obtaining feedback on Patient information leaflets, filming of the virtual tour and virtual antenatal classes

What do you enjoy about working with the MVP? Collaborative working with women and their families to ensure our services are of the highest standard.