Our board of Directors are all volunteers and bring with them a wide range of experience and skills.
They are dedicated and passionate about the work done by The Breastfeeding Network and are committed to growing the charity and to taking it from strength to strength.
Ann Kerr, Chair
I have a background as a General and Sick childrens’ nurse with an obstetric certificate and have worked in health promotion for over 20 years. I am currently a senior manager in the NHS and have been involved with breastfeeding locally and nationally.
Francesca Cherubini Stoughton, Vice Chair
I am delighted to have joined the Board in July 2017.
As a mother of two, the BfN was and still is an invaluable resource for me, particularly with respect to the straightforward advice provided around medications in breastmilk. I am committed to ensuring that mothers who want to breastfeed – along with those who love and care for them – can benefit from the same outstanding and dedicated professional and peer support that my children and I received on our breastfeeding journey.
My background is in financial services. From my early days in Corporate Finance to advising clients in Wealth Management, I have enjoyed building longstanding, personal relationships and evolving ideas and solutions to help clients achieve their goals. As a working mother, I have a particular interested in the support employers can offer to breastfeeding mothers or those seeking to return to work.
I have constantly been awed by the work that the BfN has done – especially since funding continues to be an issue – and feel that lending my skills and experience to the Board is a small way of saying thank you to all of the information and guidance provided by its brilliant staff and volunteers. I very much look forward to serving the BfN and its members.
I have been involved with BfN in various roles for 17 years, and feel it’s a hugely important part of my life. From the moment I handled a doll ‘baby’ and followed my tutor’s words on getting a good hold, position and approach, I was hooked on how important skilled, experienced breastfeeding support was. I had sought much support for my previous feeding issues – no one had offered me ‘hands off’ guidance, and I was amazed at the difference. I’ve been a Breastfeeding Supporter and Tutor/Supervisor in various local and national projects, in person and online. I continue to occasionally volunteer on the National Breastfeeding Helpline, offer voluntary supervision, and am currently delivering training and supervision with an online, remote focus. I have also been involved in Internal Moderation, and have spent time in a voluntary capacity attending many of the subgroups for QUeST – including ‘Training’ ‘Volunteers’ ‘Tutors and Supervisors’ and the ‘Short Life Working Group on Diversity and Inclusion’. These experiences have helped inform my understanding of the responsibilities of the Trustee role, and prompted my decision to join the board.
BfN has brought, and continues to bring, irreplaceable value to me personally. It’s also deeply important to me to be able to contribute to the wellbeing, not only BfN as a whole, but of the individuals that make BfN who they are.
Zara first encountered the BfN at an antenatal class whilst pregnant with her first child, Jacob. She went to several groups per week at her local children’s centres with BfN support throughout her maternity leave and made lots of new mummy friends. Zara was overwhelmed by how accepting and supportive all of the BfN team were. Zara’s breastfeeding journey was not easy or conventional but it continued far longer than anyone would have expected and that’s all down to the BfN. Zara is expecting her second child and she knows the road ahead will be far less bumpy surrounded by the amazing support of the BfN.
When the opportunity arose to train as a BfN helper Zara jumped at the chance. She now volunteers on the maternity wards in Birmingham City Hospital. The appreciation for what she does from both mums and staff is clear and very rewarding.
In her other life, Zara has a PhD in Chemistry and works for a global industrial coatings company. Zara enjoys baking and all things crafty. Zara has made quite a few stuffed boobs for BfN!
Zoe has been a member of the Board for several years. Zoe is also a Supporter, Tutor and Supervisor with the Breastfeeding Network.
Grace trained as a Helper with the BfN when she was on maternity leave with her youngest, ten years ago, and has been involved with the Breastfeeding Network ever since, as a volunteer and most recently as the volunteer coordinator for the breastfeeding service in Lambeth. In 2017 Grace qualified as a Tutor/ Supervisor, she is thoroughly enjoying working with the projects and people across London and the wider BfN. As an organisation, Grace believes the BfN is unique in the holistic, person-centered supports it gives breastfeeding parents. Grace is proud to be a volunteer peer supporter and is really pleased to be continuing her association with the BfN as a Member Director.
I’m a new mum to Fox and currently off work on maternity leave. I’m enjoying the time off and the opportunity to spend time with my son and husband, and getting to grips with parenting. We love to go on adventures together; whether that’s a weekend away or a shopping trip, and I’ve been working on my cooking and baking whilst baby-wearing skills with varied degrees of success.
I am learning through my experience of breastfeeding Fox how varied and often contradictory advice and guidance is for breastfeeding. I have also been fortunate to receive support from my husband, family, and other mums when I’ve needed insight and reassurance (or even a much needed cup of tea and some toast whilst cluster feeding). I know how hard it can be and how crucial the work of BfN is to breastfeeding families.
I work for a mobile provider in HR, specifically Talent & Development, and I’m really excited by the opportunity to be a board member and share my skills and knowledge with such a great organisation as well as develop new skills myself.
As a GP with a particular interest in paediatrics and women’s health I first came into contact with the BfN through the Drugs in Breastmilk factsheets. I find them an invaluable resource to help mothers make informed choices regarding breastfeeding whilst receiving medical treatment.
I have two little boys and after struggling to establish breastfeeding with my first son I quickly realised just how difficult it can be and how important a strong support system is. As both a mum and a doctor I have experienced first-hand the often conflicting and inaccurate information surrounding breastfeeding that women can be given. I admire the work that the BfN does to help protect the feeding relationship whilst promoting the health and wellbeing of mothers.
I am delighted to join the Board and look forward to working with the organisation to support women and their families throughout their breastfeeding journey.
I am a mum of a two-year old little boy and I first came into contact with BFN via the Drugs in Breastmilk helpline. I got in touch for reassurance that the medication I was prescribed for my ulcerative colitis was safe while breastfeeding. I was very impressed with the service I received from the helpline and also with the informative factsheets on the website.
I work in financial regulation and I have applied to join the Board because I’m very passionate about breastfeeding and I’d like to help shape the future of the charity. I’m very sad to see how many mums stop breastfeeding early due to lack of information and/or support and I’m hoping that one day breastfeeding will be the norm in the UK.
In addition to spending time with our toddler, both my husband and I love travelling and we are very lucky to have visited many different countries, including Australia and New Zealand. I also love reading and I’m a big fan of Cecilia Ahern and Diane Chamberlain.
Caroline first encountered the BfN after having her first baby and finding out the hard way that breastfeeding isn’t something you simply choose to do and then get on with.
After her second baby, a peer supporter suggested she should also train as a volunteer and since 2013 Caroline has been helping out in a couple of London groups and more recently on the helpline.
Since moving to the South West Caroline has had to give up work, and after 13 years in the financial services sector she’s very excited about joining the board as Treasurer and staying involved in that capacity too.
I started my relationship with the BfN after having great difficulty with feeding my first daughter. I realised that establishing successful breastfeeding was the hardest, most emotionally charged thing I had ever done, and if I hadn’t had support from the many people who helped me during that period, it may have been impossible. Precisely because of this, I decided to train with the BfN to become a Helper. I have regularly volunteered in Tower Hamlets since 2015, and went on to take my Supporter training in 2017 (enabling me to take calls on the National Breastfeeding Helpline).
My background is in finance, in particular focusing on the application of regulation to various financial activities. Following the birth of my second daughter, I have changed professional focus, and am now undertaking a PhD in the security and privacy of digital technologies in the home, whilst also consulting and researching on policy issues relating to digital technologies.
My relationship with BfN began after the birth of my first child, Mia. I started going to a local weekly drop-in and found the Supporters there to be both welcoming and accepting. Without their support and cheerful empowerment I would have struggled to continue. It seemed a natural next step to train as a Helper, and then whilst breastfeeding my second child, Misty to train as a Supporter. I have a background as a secondary school teacher and drew on this experience to subsequently train as a Tutor and Supervisor.
I am now tutoring and supervising in the Greater Manchester area and have been with BfN for ten years.
I was asked to join the Directors a few years ago and was inspired by the challenge of looking at our organisation in a more strategic way. I have enjoyed volunteering in this capacity and working with a talented team of Directors and feel I have energy and lots of ideas to explore taking us forward.
As well as the full board we also have a number of smaller committees which many directors are also part of. These committees report back to the board and include:
- Finance, Audit and Risk Committee (FAR)
Initial contact with Directors should be made via Shereen Fisher, Chief Executive Officer firstname.lastname@example.org
Page last updated January 2020