Our Trustees are collectively responsible for the governance of The Counselling Foundation and work with the senior management to oversee the running of our charity whilst bringing their specific expertise and experience to our skill set.
Julian Gell, BSc (Chair)
Wendy Molefi-Youri M.A. Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT)
Mandy Macqueen, BSC (Hons)
Richard Lane, MBA
Julian has recently been elected as the Chair of Trustees at the Foundation. He has been our trustee for the last three years and has taken an active part in some of the key decisions and projects we have embarked on over that period.
Until he retired from full time work he was, for 17 years, head of Human Resources and a board director at Prudential plc’s fund management business – M&G Limited. Prior to that he served in various HR roles at the Eastman Kodak Company.
“The Counselling Foundation is an important asset in our communities which we must nurture and protect and I am completely committed to that aim.”
As a trustee Mandy takes an active part in shaping the strategy, helping support making key decisions and helping to deliver projects for the Foundation.
She has spent over 25 years working in Change and Technology, with nearly 10 years working for global Management Consultancy firms running projects for Financial Services clients. She also has over 15 years experience running large IT Business Delivery functions for Global Banks. She recently left Financial Services to become Global Head of Business Solutions at leading global law firm Allen & Overy.
“I am very excited to be joining the Counselling Foundation community and I am keen to understand more about how the Foundation works and help it to continue to be successful.”
Wendy is a highly experienced GP with many years working in the NHS, with a specialist interest in women’s health and wellbeing. With her background in wellness coaching and mindfulness teaching, she offers an integrated approach to her clinical and coaching practice.
She has great appreciation of the many challenges faced by healthcare professionals on a daily basis; the mounting workload crisis and the soaring rates of burnout, stress and depression.
Wendy teaches and supports trainees and fellow healthcare professionals on the merits of nurturing their own self-care and wellbeing. She views self-care as the critical ingredient that supports and sustains wellbeing in the workplace, NOT an optional extra. Wendy is an accomplished international speaker and advocate for increased awareness and training on self-care.
Wendy holds a Masters degree in Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) from the University of Oxford. Her dissertation on ‘The role of Mindfulness Based Intervention in facilitating psychological adjustment in the menopause’ was published in the British Menopause Society Journal and presented at the International Mindfulness Conference in South Africa.
In her new role Wendy very much looks forward to learning and sharing ideas with fellow trustees who come from a diverse background. She was attracted to the Foundation and keen to work with a local charity whose objectives were aligned with her ethos and clinical practice.
“As well as offering affordable counselling services to the community I like the fact that The Counselling Foundation offers training for counsellors who provide an invaluable service.”
Richard’s career started in the hectic world of foreign exchange dealing and financial markets. After a long career and completing a part time MBA, he moved into project management at a large US company. Richard has travelled the world on its global business system implementation project working remotely and on site in Frankfurt, Milan, Penang, Hong Kong and Denver, USA. He retired from full time work in January 2019.
Richard is looking forward to the challenges ahead; “I believe I bring a different perspective, and one where I can look at matters in detail, or stand back and see the big picture. I’m hugely excited at the prospect of working alongside people with different backgrounds, views and perspectives and who all care about positive mental well-being. Richard has also been a trustee at Citizens Advice, Harlow since 2013.
“I wanted to join The Counselling Foundation because I believe promoting and helping people have good mental well-being is the right thing to do. If a great mind-set can be the difference between win or lose for athletes, it can also help people deal more effectively with traumatic events and the stresses of every-day life.”
Frances qualified as a barrister and started at The Bar, and moved to acting as a lawyer in the public sector and then onto senior management roles. Frances has extensive knowledge of public service delivery, particularly governance and privacy, and brings these key practical skills to the board. She was attracted to volunteering with The Counselling Foundation as a locally based charity which provides critical services to help with personal wellbeing. “I like the fact that it combines training and counselling services and am interested in doing what I can to help ensure those services are brought to all sections of the communities we serve.”
Frances also brings her personal knowledge of counselling services as a user and as someone who has friends and family who have struggled to access services.
”I am passionate about access and fair representation and confident to use check and challenge as a critical friend. I think this is the role of a trustee, helping ensure delivery of the organisation’s mission in the most effective way.”
Frances believes there are many opportunities for providing training to business and third sector organisations which will improve our financial position and widen the impact of offering services which improve community wellbeing.