Meet the Team

OT Student

Katie Kay - College Lead

I’ve worked within the NHS for nearly 15 years and have spent most of my career working clinically within psychological therapy services, helping people suffering from common mental health problems such as anxiety and depression. Over recent years I have worked in more of a management role.

I am passionate about helping people to live healthy, happy lives and enjoy supporting people to make positive changes. I believe in empowering people to make their own choices and to take control of their own health and wellbeing.

Outside of work I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, and I am also a keen runner.

I also enjoy learning myself and have done lots of studying throughout my life which I feel has benefited me, both in terms my career and personally in terms of my own wellbeing. After completing college I went on to study psychology at degree level and I then completed an MSc in Primary Care Mental Health. In addition I have recently completed a PgCert in NHS leadership.

I am so excited and proud to be part of the new Health & Wellbeing College and feel privileged to be part of this new project. I am really looking forward to supporting people on their journey with us and can’t wait to see the College develop!

George Edgley - College Lead

I am an occupational therapist and have worked in mental health services for many years, both within the NHS and in the independent sector.

My clinical experience has been in secondary care mental health in community teams and acute teams. I have also worked in rehabilitation, helping people with long term mental health condition in recovery.
I also work with a range of other occupational therapists in both physical and mental health in my role as Professional Lead for Occupational Therapy, and my previous role in the Health Professions Leadership Team.

I have a personal and professional interest in education and the impact this has on health and wellbeing and I am looking forward to learning from our students as well as providing opportunities for learning within the college. I recognise the benefits of education personally, after being a student on a Masters course for the last three years, having recently graduated.

Outside of work I enjoy playing musical instruments, listening to music, running to keep fit and spending time with my family and friends.

I am very excited about being part of the Health & Wellbeing College and am looking forward to working with Students and Peer Trainers on their learning journey and seeing the college grow and develop.

Paula Warriner - College Practitioner

I am lucky enough to be one of the College Practitioners. I am involved in co-producing some of the courses and co-presenting sessions along with the Peer trainers on different sites all around the footprint. I am a trained counselor and totally passionate about the ethos of the College and its purpose to empower students to self-help with skills they have learnt.

"I am continually in awe at the progress students make from one term to the next, it is a privilege to witness them transform into stronger individuals coming to terms with their potential, many even applying to become volunteers or peer trainers."

Panita Chouhan - Senior Administrator and Engagement Co-ordinator

I've worked within the NHS for nearly nine years and have spent some time working as an administrator and recently I have been working with service users and carers involving and engaging them within Pennine Care.  I love my job!

In my spare time I spend a lot of time with my friends and family and enjoying having a good time.

I am so proud to be part of the Health & Wellbeing College and feel privileged to be working with a great team of people.  I can’t wait to see and support people coming through the college and be part of their journey with them.

Amy Wilcox-Jones - Peer Trainer

I started the College as a student and then became a volunteer and now I have progressed on to a Peer Trainer role within the College. I never thought I would get anywhere like this in my life. The College has given me so many skills and so much confidence that it even amazes me. I want to thank the College for helping me to develop into the person that I am today and continuing to help me better myself. I can’t think of anything better than helping other people every day.

Dawn Perry - Peer Trainer

My name is Dawn and I am a peer trainer at the Bury Campus. I joined the Trust because I wanted to offer my skills and life experience of health challenges to help support others on a similar journey. 

I am very proud of the fact I juggle family life, health challenges and work commitments and I am able to effectively contribute to delivering College courses in a non-judgmental environment.

Gillian Abrahams - Peer Trainer

Since being introduced to the Health & Wellbeing College, my life has been enriched in so many ways.

First I was invited to help co-produce the Believe and Achieve course.  It was this which made me enthusiastic to attend other courses.  I attended several courses at Oldham and later Stockport College.  The courses have helped me to understand and manage my depression.

Recently, I have been lucky enough to get a position as a peer trainer.  The Health & Wellbeing College has turned my life around in less than 12 months.  I would encourage anyone to try it.

Judith Tomlinson Harrison - Peer Trainer

What a difference a year makes. This time last year I hadn’t heard of the College. It was the first anniversary of my widowhood. I was so low, isolated and considering ending it all.

I enrolled at the College when it opened and embraced its ethos. I was welcomed and found friendship, understanding and acceptance.  I took part in co-production and in promoting the College.  In time I became a volunteer, and now a peer trainer.

A year in which my life changed by developing enough confidence to deliver a presentation. I now have hope for the future.

Lucy Rae - Peer Trainer

Hello my name is Lucy Rae. I am a Peer Trainer at Health & Wellbeing College. My role is to be the ‘expert by experience’.

I have suffered with my mental health problems for most of my life and really want to give back. I am so passionate about helping people through my own experiences and feel I have a lot to offer. I believe self-help is the most important part of your recovery journey, you learn so much about yourself and realise how much you can actually achieve through self-help strategies.

My other passion is art and I run creative art sessions at the College. I have a BA Hons in Fine Art by background and praise all creative and holistic approaches.  I enjoy the simple things in life including music, being with nature, yoga and anything creative!

I want to wish every student all the best in their journey with the College.

Sarah Moore - Peer Trainer

When I first came to the College I was so anxious, I sat near the door, my head telling me to escape. I decided to stay and it was the best decision I have made. I had been living with a mental illness which led me to isolate myself. I made new friends and my confidence soared. Each course I’ve learned something new. I then became a volunteer, met new people and gained more skills. I applied for a job as a Peer Trainer which I got. Hopefully my journey will inspire others.