Meet the Board

Janet Rickman, Chair

Hi, I’m Janet Rickman and I have been on the Board firstly as Membership Co-ordinator and then was elected Chair in 2015.

I completed the Portage Workshop in 1978 and used the principles in a variety of early year’s settings in inner London boroughs.

I became a full time Portage Worker in Croydon in 1996 and went on to co-ordinate the team.  I moved to the Bromley service 9 years ago, again as Co-ordinator.

I am still as passionate about Portage as I was when I first started!

Tracy Harvey, Joint Vice Chair

Hello, my name is Tracy Harvey – I was the London and South East Regional Trustee from 2010 until September 2015 and am now the Vice Chair, sharing the role with Jane McHale.

I have been involved with Portage since 1994, employed initially as a senior Portage Home Visitor and now as Portage Lead for Kent Portage service.

Jane McHale, Joint Vice Chair

Jane joined the Board in January 2015.  Jane works for Liverpool City Council as an Early Help SEND Officer and is the Manager of the Portage in Liverpool project.

Jane is married to Chris and has 2 grown up children, Martin and Heather.

“My youngest child Heather is a young lady with complex learning disabilities and I was introduced to Portage in 1992 and since then have developed my career working across Education, Health, Social Care and the Voluntary Sector supporting children and adults with disabilities. I have been on quite a journey since I first started using the Portage model with my own family and now I have the opportunity to give something back. Portage changed everything and gave my family hope, something I aim to do for others.”

Christine Silver, Treasurer

Hello, I have been Treasurer since April 2013.  I retired a few years ago, having worked in early years education for nearly 30 years; as head teacher in a special nursery school, where I had responsibility for the school finances as part of my role and as a pre-school support teacher, where I worked closely with the local Portage service.

I have been an NPA member for over 20 years and since semi-retirement now have time to take on a voluntary role, which I am finding interesting and at times challenging.

The Treasurer works closely with the NPA Finance Officer, Kathleen Scoble who does a great job managing the NPA accounts and general finance. 

Find out more about the role of the Treasurer and responsibilities as a Board member.

Veronica Boys, Chair of Training

Hello, I started in the role of Chair of Training in June 2015. I first joined the NPA when I started working in a Portage Service in 1991 and have been a Board member since 2005.

I have really enjoyed all the different roles I have had, I think this current role has been the most challenging and the most rewarding! One of the best parts of the role is getting to know and work with more members, Trainers and Trainee Trainers.

Find out about the role of the Chair of Training and responsibilities as a Board member.

Shahenaz Shaikh, Northern Regional Trustee

I am the Regional Trustee for the Northern Region.  I stated working with the Kirklees Portage Service in 1998 as a Portage Home Visitor and became a Senior Practitioner managing the Kirklees team in 2001.

I have been a member of the board since October 2009 and enjoy every part of the role. 

Sharon Ensor – South West Regional Trustee

Greetings! I’m Sharon Ensor. I am the Regional Trustee for the South West.

I was employed as a Portage Visitor in Portsmouth in 1998 and became the manager in 2003.

Jill Palmer – Wales Regional Trustee

I have been working within Portage since 2005. I initially set up Wrexham Portage service then moved over to Wrexham flying start in 2012.

I have been the Welsh Regional Trustee and member of the board since early 2016.

I am passionate about Portage and my aim is to spread Portage across Wales as I have seen the success and empowerment of families over the years.

Find out more about the role of Regional Trustees and responsibilities as a Board member.

Don't have a Regional trustee in your area?

If you do not currently have a Regional Trustee in your area and you would like to find out more, please contact office.manager@portage.org.uk or phone 0121 2441807.