MEET OUR TRUSTEES
Our Trustees have come together with a common interest in supporting disadvantaged children in a country where assistance is limited. They meet monthly in Bristol.
"Nepal is a very poor country, so there are huge, much-needed opportunities to transform the lives of children with disabilities." Fran McGowan, Founder
Robert is a retired farmer, Vice Lord-Lieutenant of Gloucestershire and has many years experience as Chairman of Trustees in the education and residential care sectors. He has always been full of admiration for all the great work done at DNC and for the young people there. They battle with major difficulties on a daily basis but create a loving and mutually supportive community. I believe that we all have much to learn from their courage and dedication.
Fran has a background in nursing and psychotherapy. In 2003 she volunteered at the Newlife Centre in Kathmandu for children with disabilities and this experience was the inspiration to set up the Nepali Children’s Trust in 2005 and to live in Nepal for four years. Fran was the founder chairman of NCT for 10 years until 2015. She remains a Trustee and continues to visit Nepal regularly to oversee the work of NCT. Nepal is a very poor country, so there are huge, much needed opportunities to transform the lives of children with disabilities.
Meg is one of the founders of NCT, working with a fundraising committee of friends to form the Nepali Children’s Trust as a registered charity. I was inspired by Fran’s moving account of the children in a home where I volunteered in Nepal, and their vulnerability, together with their innate charm and care for each other.
Maureen ran a brewery for 25 years with her husband (Butcombe Brewery). She has now retired and apart from spending time with her grandchildren, she enjoy various activities, one of which is her involvement with NCT.
Tricia’s background is in nursing and psychotherapy. She was a founder Trustee of NCT and became the chairman in 2015. She visited Nepal in 2005 with Fran and met the children from the Disabled Newlife Centre. It was the beginning of her involvement with DNC and an increasing love of Nepal and of the people and a desire to try and make a difference to vulnerable young people. Their conditions were poor but there was a spirit of vitality that overrode their disability and drew me in.
Sarah-Jane spent 10 years working in the construction industry, in marketing and maintenance, then in property PR. She had a late change of career to become an Occupational Therapist, which included training in adapting buildings and assessing and providing equipment for the disabled. She now works as a Neuro-Rehabilitation Case Manager for patients with traumatic or birth injuries. She has been a Trustee since 2008 and has visited Nepal annually, working alongside the Trustees and other partners in Nepal to ensure that funds are used effectively. She lives in north Essex, and is currently Bench Chair for North Essex Magistrates.
After a career in industry, Nick set up his own consultancy designing PC-based business applications. His interest in Nepal was triggered when his wife Judy took part in a sponsored trek for NCT. Judy returned from Nepal with glowing reports of how successful the trek had been in building the confidence and self-respect of students with disabilities – as well as raising a substantial sum of money from within the UK.
Annette's career has been in Health and Social Care, locally and nationally, working for the Audit Commission, the Department of Health, the Health Advisory Service and the Council of Europe. She was appointed as a Magistrate in 1984 and is still an active member on the Family Bench. She has been involved with several charities in a voluntary capacity. I am inspired by what can be achieved to help some of the most underprivileged young people in our world to have a more fulfilling life.
John is a consultant chest physician at Southmead Hospital, Bristol. He has volunteered with the Flying Doctor service in Tanzania and also works with the Royal College of Physicians, training doctors in Africa, India and Bangladesh. He was inspired to become a Trustee after hearing Fran’s story about her first visit to the Disabled Newlife Centre in Kathmandu, where she saw how desperately they needed support for their centre and its children. Seeing what NCT is achieving in Nepal is truly amazing but there is still so much more that we need to do.
Janey has a management consultancy business working with organisations which work on development and humanitarian response. I want to help NCT to maximise the value of the support offered to Nepali NGOs for supporting children with disabilities, both in terms of value for the money given and to help the local organisations become increasingly self-sustaining.
Diane works as a consultant in equality and human rights. She has worked internationally for UN Women, UN Habitat, Council of Europe and the EU, and nationally for a range of public organisations and private companies. She was an elected member of Bristol City Council for 12 years and the first women leader of the Council. I got involved with NCT because of the enthusiasm and dedication of those already involved and because it gives me an opportunity to use some of the experience I have gained from international work to make a positive difference to children with disabilities in Nepal.
Grenfell and his wife Wendy became early supporters of NCT after attending fundraising events; he says
the lunches were (and continue to be) outstanding and they enjoyed meeting fellow travellers! Grenfell is a chartered accountant and has spent most of his working life advising, and working in, owner-managed businesses.
He became a Trustee and Treasurer in January 2016. I hope to be able to contribute to the steady development of NCT in coming years.