The Aspire Team
Susanna - CEO & Founder
I’m Susanna, and I’m proud to be the Chief Executive Officer of Aspire! I’m a registered Occupational Therapist, with over eighteen years experience working with adults over 55 in care homes, mental health services, volunteer work, and the NHS.
I work in partnership with many innovative local organisations, and with such a creative and like-minded team of staff and volunteers. This is my dream job! From a very young age, I was inspired to care deeply about the lives and stories of people a good few decades older than me. Listening and learning from people, and connecting with them, is the beating heart of what we do. I hate labels, stereotypes and assumptions that box people in, that make an individual feel undervalued, or that their story is somehow of little worth. People are people, no matter how old!
My dream is that many more Aspire communities will spring up across Kirklees and beyond - places where people can have fun, try something new, and forge lasting friendships. We aim to deliver an exceptional quality of service, shifting cultures and attitudes, and working hard to see people’s lives change through purpose, connection and loving our communities.
Stella - Session Leader
Hi, I'm Stella and I volunteered with Susanna at St John's Aspire in Birkby when it first started in 2015. I now work for Aspire running groups in Ashbrow and Gomersal, and I cover the outreach work for Dalton. I love the variety of people I get to know through Aspire - it's a real privilege to be involved in their lives in a small way. Aspire also brings out the best of my creative side as
I love painting and crafting in my spare time. I work with a great team of staff and volunteers too - it's like family.
Rebekah - Volunteer Coordinator & Session Leader
I'm Rebekah, I have been working with Aspire for a year, before this I worked with Talkthru in Huddersfield & as a freelance Landscape Designer. I am the Volunteer Coordinator for Aspire & Session Leader for the groups at Sandy Mount & Birkby Croft. I love to encourage others & facilitate community. It is such a privilege to work with both the Aspire members & the amazing volunteers who offer their time & skills.
Liz - Aspire Administrator
Hello I'm Liz, I joined Aspire in 2020. Susanna says I am half her brain! What I actually do is to provide the admin support for Aspire so that she can concentrate on other things. I am very much looking forward to the groups opening up again as I only began with Aspire during lockdown.