Social Covenant Steering Group: member biographies

Biographies for the members of the Social Covenant Steering Group set up to build trust in social care support.

Biographies for members of the Social Covenant Steering Group.

Kevin Stewart MSP (Chair)

Minister for Mental Wellbeing and Social Care

Sarah Cronie

Sarah is an ambassador for young people with long term health conditions, learning disabilities, early experience of bereavement, care experienced young people and young carers and experienced all these challenges herself at a young age. Nineteen-year-old Sarah works with the Usual Place in Dumfries, a community café which provides training, education and employability skills for young people with additional support needs.

Dr Caroline Gould

Caroline lives on the Isle of Skye and works for a local charity for disabled people and advises on accessibility of buildings and services and training of staff. 

Tommy Whitelaw

For five years Tommy Whitelaw was a full-time carer for his late mother Joan who had Vascular Dementia. Since 2011 he has engaged with thousands of carers through his ‘Tommy on Tour’ blog and is National Lead for Caring and Outreach with the Health and Social Care Alliance Scotland’s Carer Voices project.

Marion McArdle

Marion McArdle has an adult daughter who has profound multiple learning disabilities and complex health needs.

Sophie and Robert Hogg

74-year-old Sophie has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and Robert is her husband and carer.

Robert Faulds

Robert had addiction issues and was on methadone for 18 years and was addicted to heroin for two decades. He has now recovered and volunteers at an addiction centre where he helps others.

Richard Toner

Richard is a young man with disabilities who is able to study at college with the help of a care package.

Carmen Simon

Carmen is a social care worker, and a member of the Unite union, who supports adults with complex care needs. 

Helen Morrison

Helen is a resident in a South Lanarkshire care home. 

Shubhanna Hussain-Ahmed

Shubhanna cares for her youngest child, who is autistic with a significant learning disability, as well as managing the health and care needs of her mother. She also provides support to her husband who was diagnosed with a degenerative neurological condition a few years ago. She is currently the Partnership Development Officer at the Coalition of Carers in Scotland.

Jim Elder-Woodward

Jim has cerebral-palsy and is also an experienced campaigner for disabled peoples’ rights. He was also a member of the IRASC advisory group.

Cathie Russell

Cathie has been campaigning with Care Home relatives Scotland to protect the rights of loved ones in nursing and residential care. She is a former corporate communications manager at South Lanarkshire Council. 

COSLA representative 

There is a standing invitation for a COSLA representative on the group. COSLA is a councillor-led, cross-party organisation who work on councils' behalf to focus on the challenges and opportunities they face, and to engage positively with governments and others on policy, funding and legislation.

Dr Pauline Nolan 

Pauline Nolan is policy manager at Inclusion Scotland which runs the Scottish Government funded people-led policy panel, a diverse group of people who all have lived experience of adult social care support.

Janet MacLugash

Janet lives in the Highlands. She is a member of Inclusion Scotland and the people-led policy panel.

Göran Henriks

Chief Executive of Learning and Innovation, Qulturum, Jönköping County, Sweden. Göran is a board member of the Swedish Institute for Quality, (SIQ) and the Chairman of the Strategic Committee of the International Quality Forum organised by the British Medical Journal (BMJ) and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement. Göran was also a member of the IRASC advisory panel.

John Whitfield

John has usher syndrome type two and has been severely deaf from birth, then began losing his sight in his late teens. He now has less than 5% vision left, and has lived experience of dual sensory loss for over 50 years. Formerly a board member of Deafblind Scotland, he now has a role as a Training and Participation officer, delivering training and talks to both the public and private sector, promoting equality and support for those with dual sensory loss.



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