Listen Understand Support

Our Team, Get to Know Us

We are the Kelly Foundation, a pioneering mental health charity providing dedicated and bespoke services for those suffering mild to serious poor mental health of an enduring nature.

Our team below supports individuals holistically to help them find their best way forward

All our staff and volunteers that interact with our Service Users are rigorously checked by The Kelly Foundation to ensure they have the appropriate certification, qualification or experience for the work they do with us.

Meet the Staff

Emma Rees

General Manager /
Service User Support
Liaison
Emma Rees

Emma Rees played a major part in the formation of The Kelly Foundation which is also known as 4Kelly.

She says "Looking after our mental health is so important and everyone deserves to thrive with good mental health and well being. I've worked in mental health for quite a while now and I feel passionately about championing individuals who need support. There is a real need for free therapy in our community. Not everyone can afford private counselling costs or therapies. This can cause despair, isolation and honestly not knowing which way to turn. I want everyone that reaches out for our help to know that there is someone to listen and help, for them to know they are not alone."

Emma has 10 years experience and qualifications that have allowed her to work in mental health and support vulnerable adults with both mental health issues and learning disabilities. Emma is also qualified to act as a general advocate.

Melanie Williams

Life Coach
Melanie Williams

Melanie has been involved with The Kelly Foundation from the very beginning.

She says "Being involved with The Kelly Foundation is at the heart of everything I believe in. Every person has the right to be understood and listened to when it comes to mental health. Resources are currently at an all time low in relation to how many individuals need support, and I believe that the Kelly Foundation is going to be a safe space where multiple services can be offered and tailored support can be given to Service Users.

I am a practising life coach but knit together all my other mental health training and have always been passionate about helping others. One of my strengths has always been to look at situations through different lenses which I hope will help Service Users to see things in an alternative way and improve their general well-being.

I hope that by bringing these skills to The Kelly Foundation will give our Service Users a great end-end experience alongside all of our other amazing professionals."

Barry Branigan

Finance Manager
Barry Branigan

"I joined RAF straight from school and served in administration for 13 years. My experience since then my career been in finance, operations management, and logistics in the Civil Service, the construction industry, and international retail. In 2000 I ventured unto the charity sector, joining the RNIB as Communications Manager, followed by senior positions in national, regional and local charities.

I have worked with Emma Rees and Martyn Woerner in a previous mental health charity, with some considerable success in delivering our mission, until retiring (for the third time) in February 2022. I was offered the opportunity to support the set up and running of The Kelly Foundation and having heard about the tragic circumstances leading to John Stookes drive to establish the charity, along with his determination and infectious enthusiasm, I came out of retirement again to join his team.

I see my role as controlling the finances and securing grant funding, particularly in the important early days of The Charity. I will also support the Trustees in decision making in the areas of employment and charity law and general compliance.

I look forward to being to being a part of The Kelly Foundation's future in supporting the mental health of the Swindon Community."

Trustees

The charity is responsible to a board of experienced Trustees who donate all of their time because they feel passionately about the lack of obvious and available comprehensive support for individuals suffering acute anxiety, depression and other mental illnesses.

John Stooke

Chairman
John Stooke

"I'm John Stooke and I am honoured to Chair this charity set up in memory of two of my children Corrie and Kelly, who both left our world far too soon as a direct result of poor mental health. When the idea was first floated, it seemed way too ambitiously however obvious urgent the need was (and I speak from personal experience) the need to offer something more than a purely medical solution to people's chronic anxiety and depression. My personal confidence in Emma knows no limits and I'm both excited and optimistic to begin this journey under her stewardship. Although I have more than 40 years of senior business experience, I'm delighted to say I'm learning new things every day."

Claire Bentley

Trustee
Claire Bentley

"My name is Claire Bentley and I am Kelly's sister. I currently hold the position as IT Director for the UK and APAC region in a large multinational company. I have witnessed at first hand just how poor mental health can destroy people's hopes and dreams. Growing up, Kelly was bright, cheerful and outgoing (if just a little bit annoying) and she showed no sign of what the future might hold. Progressively it became harder and harder for her to put on the kind of face that the world expected. We, in her close family, knew just what challenges she overcame every day, in every month, in every year, for a very long time. To friends and colleagues, she remained a bubbly, bright, outgoing character but inside it became more and more difficult for her. I have joined the Trust because I believe I can offer business skills and importantly I want to try to do something to help the many Kellys that are out there that are feeling despair and in need of support. I have a special interest in addiction and am a strong advocate of holistic health."

Rob Abbott

Trustee
Rob Abbott

"My name is Rob Abbott. I'm 60 years old and have recently retired from full time employment. In my younger days I spent 5 years in the Royal Air Force before joining a global Relocation company where I gained Business experience in a variety of Senior Leadership roles such as Operations, HR, Training and Business strategy.

I recently joined the Kelly Foundation as one of the Trustees and hopefully can support this great cause with general Business insight as required.

Mental well-being is both underfunded and a critical issue in todays society and I hope the Trust will be able to provide much needed help to those we seek to assist."

Adam Commons

Trustee
Adam Commons

"I was extremely honoured to have been invited to be a Trustee for The Kelly Foundation. My experiences at Enterprise Works gave me exposure to the challenges that people face, both physically and mentally, that most of us take for granted. Having recently lost a good Army friend through suicide and having gone through similar issues myself, I was very happy to be part of this wonderful charity. If what we do through The Kelly Foundation helps just one person, it will be all worth it!"

Adam is a military veteran after serving 22 years in the British Army, leaving the service in 2016. He then went on to work for Swindon Borough Council where he undertook the management of Enterprise Works, which helps disabled and disadvantaged residents gain valuable employment skills and assist them to progress into wider employment to live independently. He left SBC in 2020 to work for the NHS as a Head of Service for Geriatric Medicine, Neurology and Stroke, navigating these specialties through the pandemic and delivering the best service possible to the patients. Adam is currently focussing on developing his small massage therapy business.

Martyn Woerner

Trustee
Martyn Woerner

"I have been involved with a mental health charity for many years and am excited at the new, hands on approach of The Kelly Foundation to greatly help many people in Swindon that are experiencing or will experience life-destabilising episodes. Anyone can have a life-altering event that throws their mental life into chaos, many others have continuing emotional upsets and I am delighted to be able to help The Kelly Foundation provide practical support and understanding to those with mental anguish."

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