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Grainne was appointed Deputy Lead Governor by the Council of Governors on Wednesday 17 February 2021.

Listening to the voice and experience of children and young people and their parents or carers is so important to delivering good clinical services, and ensuring good outcomes for children and young people – not only at the time they receive help but also when they become young adults in the future.  Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust delivers many children’s services and all staff in those services are committed and passionate about what they do.  My role is very much to champion the Trusts work; to ensure that the Trust is governed well, to encourage and support children, young people and their carers to use their voice and work together with staff to influence and improve services.

I have lived experience of disability and have worked in many roles listening to families and supporting them when they have a child with Special Education Needs or Disability (SEND) at Portage, Parent Carer Forums, SEND Information and Advice Service and at the Foundation for People with Learning Disability (FPLD) advisory board. I help run Sunbeam Swimming Club (an amateur inclusive swimming club). I also work as a trainer for the Department of Health funded Expert Parent Programme to help parents and carers who have a child with a disability navigate health services and to work in partnership clinical partners.

Grainne Saunders
Grainne Saunders
Grainne Saunders

Watch this short video of Grainne encouraging young people to join as a member.

Video transcript

Hello, my name is Grainne Saunders and I'm a Governor at Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust.

My role as a Governor is to represent the views of children and young people across Sussex.

The Trust is particularly looking for young people to show their support of the Trust and local NHS, by joining up and becoming a member. As a member, you can share your experience and help improve services.

You can decide how involved you want to be.

You can just receive the newsletter, and keep up to date with local NHS work. Or you can decide to get more involved, and provide your feedback.

I have two children and my youngest uses many services so I know from my own family experience, how important it is to give feedback. And be involved to improve services.

The Trust provides more than 70 services across Sussex and of the Children and Young People services you might have heard of ChatHealth. ChatHealth is a confidential text messaging service, that provides information to young people supporting them through a number of sensitive issues including anxiety and health related matters.

The Trust also provides wheelchair and special seating services for children, as well as speech and language therapy, occupational therapy and physiotherapy services for children.

To become a member of the Trust, you don't need any special skills or special experience. As long as you are over twelve years old, and have an interest in or a connection to the Trust because you use one of it's services.

It's completely free to join and very easy.

You could fill in the online form by clicking the web link below. Or if you have any questions and need a bit more help, you can phone the friendly membership team on 01273 696 011 extension 1520 and they'll be really happy to help you.

Thank you.

Page last reviewed: 04 April 2024
Next review due: 04 October 2024