VOICES Trustees

Our Trustees are a group of diverse people who work voluntarily to make sure VOICES is run effectively and that our charity does all it can to place the needs, wishes and insights of people with lived experience of domestic abuse at the heart of all we do. Read more about them in their own words below.

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VOICES Trustees

Our Trustees are a group of diverse people who work voluntarily to make sure VOICES is run effectively and that our charity does all it can to place the needs, wishes and insights of people with lived experience of domestic abuse at the heart of all we do. Read more about them in their own words below.

Brigid Musselwhite, Chair

“My name is Brigid and I have been Chair of VOICES since January 2021. My career was in the NHS as a manager and Executive Director for Strategy and Service Improvement. Since I retired I have had roles as a Non-Executive Director in the NHS and as a charity leader. I am passionate about the work VOICES does and see its real strength as being that it is founded and led by people with lived experience of abuse. That direct knowledge is the most powerful thing we have if we are going to make change and support those who are living with or beyond an abusive relationship. The twin aims of VOICES to support individuals to improve their personal position and to influence change at a National level are key to us learning and acting. I am happy to bring my particular experience and strengths in strategic thinking, partnership working and corporate governance (the ‘rules’ within which the Charity operates) to support the VOICES staff team and its clients. I live in Bath with my husband.”

Farha Rasul

“I am a co-founder of VOICES and before this, of the community group SEEDS Bath. I have been a VOICES Trustee since 2016. I am an adult education specialist and trainer and currently lead the Department of English and Maths at Bath College. I have an interest in training services to improve the gap in services that support women who experience DAV as well as in research to impact and influence policy.  Originally from Wales, I have been a Bath resident since 2010.”

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Helen Wehner

“I am Helen and have been a trustee of VOICES since 2016. I am now retired but spent most of my career as a GP in Bristol. I first developed a professional interest in domestic abuse when my practice became an intervention practice for the IRIS (Identification and Referral to Improve Safety) study in 2007 and for the first time we were given skills to identify and discuss domestic abuse with our patients and a referral system for those at highest risk. Domestic abuse is now much more widely recognised and talked about but services to support those who are being, and have been, abused or controlled remain underfunded and often inadequate. This is why I am delighted to support VOICES, who not only support local women on their difficult journeys out of abuse but are also increasingly being able to use the voice of lived experience to help develop policy and services in the wider area. In my spare time I sing, walk, take photographs and volunteer with medical-related charities in the UK and abroad.”

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Jo Silver

“I’ve been a VOICES trustee since 2018. I have worked in the Safeguarding and domestic abuse sector for nearly 20 years and it all happened by accident, but that’s a long story. I am a Director with SafeLives, a national domestic abuse charity, and I really enjoy it – it’s a privilege. My previous roles in the police as a detective constable in public protection team, a domestic abuse lead, sexual offences officer, a police trainer and – by far my most rewarding role – a family liaison officer, have given me a great insight into the total destruction of domestic abuse. It was this professional experience that led me to the domestic abuse and voluntary sector.  So, what do I bring to the board? Well hopefully I bring a very practical and strategic approach to the board, because weirdly this is how I think. I share my expert advice on domestic abuse in a national context, a good understanding of service provision, evidence-based activities, current innovation and policy messages and best practice but most importantly an open mind. I am absolutely rubbish at planning, spreadsheets, I hate routine and paperwork so thankfully fellow trustees bring this in buckets. My work with VOICES is inspiring, the integrity and bravery of this organisation is like watching the sun come up.”

Peter Brandt

“My name is Peter and I was born and grew up in Bristol and now live in Somerset. Through my professional life I have worked to prevent the commission of offences. I support the work of VOICES as I believe we all have a duty not only to support people who have been abused by others, but also to align ourselves with them to jointly stand against all forms of abuse and harm. Though anyone can be the subject of domestic abuse, it is overwhelmingly evident that it is in part due to the way women and girls are treated by men and boys. As a man, I hope I can take what I learn from VOICES and be an active participant in the stand against misogyny, and that I can contribute to the development of a safe place for us all to live. I believe that the work of VOICES is vital to further the understanding of both how deep rooted and prolonged abuse can be; and how lonely and isolating that experience can be. Through the work that VOICES does, based on lived experience,  we can educate ourselves and others to the complexity of abuse and provide both a hand and voice to those who need it.”

Joanna Hole

“My name is Joanna, and I joined VOICES as a Trustee in January 2022.  I grew up in a nomadic military household, but my own family have been based in Bath since my now grown up (or so they say) children started school and my roving public service career took off. After taking early retirement from Whitehall, I had the privilege of becoming a Non-Executive Director at the RUH and eventually their Vice Chair. When NHS Governance rules timed me out, I resolved to continue to use my skills & experience supporting something that really matters, both to me and in my local community. In my almost 10 years assuring Adult and Children’s Safeguarding and Patient and Carer experience at the hospital, I was acutely aware of the reality of Domestic Abuse blighting so many lives in Bath. I want to use what I have learnt, together with my background in HR and influencing change, plus my own early years’ ‘overcomer’ experience, to support the amazing team at VOICES. Nurturing their individual needs as human beings as well as their development as specialists is key to the continued quality of the vital support they provide to those who are living with or beyond an abusive relationship.”

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We can support you now

If you are ready to have a conversation with us, leave a safe number for us to call and a time that suits you either on our answer machine or via email.

No commitments, no record without your consent. Just a conversation.

01225 420249

info@voicescharity.org

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This service has saved my mental health and has provided a safe service whilst helping with coping mechanisms for the future.

- Lena

Latest news

VOICES closing on 19 September

VOICES will be closed for one day on the Bank Holiday, Monday 19th September, as the whole country says farewell to our Queen, Elizabeth II. RIP. Please remember the National Domestic abuse 24 hours helpline (0808 2000247)  and emergency services (999)  are still available for anyone who feels in danger of immediate harm. VOICES will be reopening services…

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VOICES Summer Break

Voices will be closed for our Summer Break from 15 August for 2 weeks. We reopen on Tuesday 30th August.

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Job vacancy: Executive Officer p/t

Could you help us grow and develop VOICES? We have an exciting opportunity for a part-time Executive Officer to help develop our independent domestic abuse charity with Lived Experience at its heart, working with the CEO and team at our Safe Space centre based in Bath. Deadline: 31 August 2022. Downloadable info below.