More About SENDAC & Our Team …

Find out what SENDAC is and learn a little bit about our wonderful Parent Carer Forum Commitee Members!




SEND alliance Cumbria (SENDAC) is the official Parent Carer forum for parents and carers of children and young people with additional needs and disabilities in the beautiful county of Cumbria. Our role is to reach out to families and listen to your concerns and opinions about all SEND services in Cumbria, from EHCP issues to diagnosis processes & concerns about therapy! Armed with this Parent Carer feedback, SENDAC attend meetings & events with the Local Authority, NHS professionals, as well as other professional SEND bodies. SENDAC are an equal statutory partner and therefore, this allows us to voice your opinion to the people who can make a difference!

Then together we can shape and improve SEND services across Cumbria, with your opinions behind every decision throughout the process, also known as co-production. SENDAC are the parent voice of Cumbria, we make sure your voice is at the heart of every decision.

We have spent the last year working hard to establish relationships with our statutory partners and other SEND professionals. Working In coproduction with these professionals has enabled parent carers to have a voice that is so desperately required for the SEND services in Cumbria. We are currently working on area’s such as EHCP’s, sensory processing, the autism diagnosis pathway, the autism in schools project and so much more.

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Meet Our wonderful Team! 

All of our forum Committee members are parent Carers and SENDAC is something that is exceptionally close to our hearts. We all have the same passion to improve the lives for SEND children and their families and ensure they get heard.


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SENDAC Chair & Coordinator | Carlisle

Age: 26 | Children: One little boy, Age 6 | Employment: SENDAC coordinator | Hobbies: EHCP & SEND law, Studying, interior design and house renovations


A little bit about me– I have ADHD & dyslexia and I have a little boy called Archie, who is autistic, globally delayed, hyperlexic and has SPD, I am both employed and volunteer for SENDAC. I have trainnig in Autism, Makaton and sensory processing and have a degree in Project Management.


Why did you join SENDAC? There is significant room for improvement in Cumbria regarding SEND and the support our children have. I am passionate about helping children with additional needs, as well as, their families. Parents are experts in the SEND world, they don’t just deserve to have a voice, it is essential that they have that voice.  Being able to stand for parent’s and Children with SEND and being the platform that enables them to get their voice, opinions and thoughts to those who can actually make a change in these areas is invigorating and an honour. Parents and young people’s voices matter, we need the correct people to hear them.



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SENDAC Parent Rep | Carlisle

Age: 34 | Children: 2, son 12yrs, daughter, 5yrs | Employment: Project manager on the railway| Hobbies: I love to spend time with family & friends. I also love reading & have set myself a challenge to read 52 books this year!

A little bit about me– I am a parent to 2 children, one of whom received an autism diagnosis last year. In between playing referee to the kids, I work full time as a project manager. I am passionate about improving the information and services available to young people with autism and mental health struggles having experienced the frustrations first hand.


Why did you join SENDAC? As a family we are at the beginning of our journey with professional services and we have been completely exhausted trying to find out what’s available, what’s applicable and who can help. When the opportunity came up to volunteer with SENDAC I knew I needed to do it straight away. The platform not only allows me to provide a parents voice to the various partners, it also provides me with invaluable information to help my son.



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SENDAC Parent Rep | Carlisle

Age: 33| Children: 2 children, Ava & Oliver, one primary age, one secondary age | Employment:  Higher level Teaching assistant | Hobbies: paddle boarding, hiking/running, calligraphy

A little bit about me: our aim is to help families and children’s voices be heard throughout services. I also work in a local school as a higher level teaching assistant, where I work closely with young people with SEND. I have two children, one with additional needs.


Why did you join SENDAC?  My passion is to improve outcomes for these young people, and I believe that having family Voices at the centre of conversations and decision making, through SENDAC, will help to make this possible.





SENDAC Management Commitee | Carlisle

Age: 33 | Children: 2 girls, 10 and 7. Husband age 39 ¾ (also like a child!) | Employment: Just finished university and trying to decide on my next steps! | Hobbies: Eating, laughing, generally acting like a big kid, travelling

Why did you join SENDAC?

I originally joined last year when it was forming and was co-chair for most of 2021 but had to take a step back due to my university work. I joined because I felt lonely, frustrated, and let down.

I want to make sure that all the children and young people in Cumbria with SEND have the support that they need and are entitled to, and I want families to know what they are entitled to. This has led me to the IPSEA law courses which I am currently studying from home.



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SENDAC Parent Rep | Carlisle

Age: 39| Children: Ollie, age 5 | Employment: Back Shift Manager for National Delivery Company | Hobbies: My Hobbies would be Eating as you can never have enough food, talking and taking picture’s of Ollie.


A little bit about me– I am Currently In the Process of getting a Diagnosis of Adhd.  I am a parent to Ollie who is 5 and Non Verbal.  He received his Autism Diagnosis in August 2021 and PMLD in May 2022.  I have undertaken Courses in Understanding Autism as well as Special Educational Needs and Disability.

Why did you Join SENDAC?

I joined Sendac to ensure Parent’s and young people’s with Send Voices are heard and Sendac gives me the opportunity to Attend Events and give Parent’s Views into the Subjects that matter to us all.




SENDAC Management Committee | Maryport

Age: 38 | Children: Jason, 10 and Joey, 4| Employment: I was a Primary Teacher in my past life, now Parent Carer to my youngest son | Hobbies: I spend most of my free time immersed in the world of SEND Law or talking about my special interest – Autism! I love spending time with family and enjoy singing and listening to music.

A little bit about me- I am autistic and have ADHD. My eldest son, Jason, is also autistic and has ADHD. Joey, my youngest, is autistic, non-verbal and globally delayed. All three of us have very different sensory needs, so life in our household is quite interesting!

Why did you join SENDAC?

Until Joey came along, Jason and I were completely unaware of our neurodivergence. My only experiences of SEND were through teaching, and even then, I had very limited knowledge and understanding. As our journey progressed, lead by Joey’s emerging needs, I became aware of the lack of awareness, understanding, support and provision for children with SEND and their families. Things snowballed for us, really, as we learned about ourselves and our needs as a family, and I found myself soaking up anything and everything relating to the SEND world, realising that I needed to be able to advocate for my children and their needs. When I came across SENDAC, I figured I could put my own skill set to productive use. The way I see it, I have had to arm myself with knowledge, so I may as well use that to support others! Reform is needed, and that starts with the voice of the child and parent/carer – I’m really proud to be part of SENDAC, helping to get those voices heard.



SENDAC Parent Rep | Whitehaven

Age: 71 | Employment:  now retired, previously a manager working in the Oil & Gas and Nuclear industries.  | Hobbies: Outside of my 8 grandchild & 5 great grandchild. who keep me young. I coarse fish and play walking football to relax and keep myself fit.


A little bit about meA specialist in Management System development and maintenance, compliance, risk management, business performance/measurement and improvement. For 6 years I was a Senior Mgt Consultant providing expert advice to Oil & Gas companies throughout the world. I was a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute and a member of the Chartered Quality Institute, prior to retirement.

I’m also a member of the the panel assessing projects for Well Whitehaven, delivering improvements to the lives of those less fortunate within specific areas of Whitehaven. 


I am also Deputy Chair of Haig Angling Club, where I’m responsible for applying for funding to provide money to maintain Mirehouse Ponds and Woodlands.


Why did you Join SENDAC?

I have 3 grandchildren with SEND, I’ve seen firsthand how frustrating it is to get any effective support. I know that any little support you do get , you’ve got to spend many hours repeating yourself over and over again. Joining SENDAC will allow me use my professional skills to help the SENDAC team to work with the various Organisations, in delivering sustainable improvements across the wide spectrum of SEND systems/processes.


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SENDAC Parent Rep | Carlisle

Age: 37 | Employment:  Full time parent carer, before becoming a parent I completed my degree in Business Management and IT and then worked for Local Government | Hobbies:I love being with family and friends, laughing, reading, travelling and learning new things.


A little bit about me– I have two children both with additional needs. I am interested in learning everything I can about Autism and ADHD and in turn helping others with the knowledge I have gained.


Why did you Join SENDAC?

My family understand first hand the frustrating process of dealing with professionals, awaiting diagnoses and feeling lost in an overwhelming system.

I joined SENDAC because I wanted to help others in their SEND journeys, be a voice for other parents/carers and try and help make a difference.

Communication is key and the more that everyone talks and share their experiences, the more we can make positive changes for all those on their SEND journey.

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SENDAC Leaflet

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SENDAC c/o Cumbria Family Support The Office, Mardale Road Penrith Cumbria CA11 9EH

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