Attendees Making Notes on Flip Chart at Our March Conference 2014

Voice and representation

Representing the voluntary and community sector at a local level is a key part of our work. We ensure that our members’ voices and expertise are heard at a range of partnerships, boards, and informal meetings with key people across the local area.

“CW work on representing the sector in the Integration of Health and Social Care, Caring Together and its forebears has been excellent. Very thorough, transparent and highly expert staff.” 

Member feedback

Health and Wellbeing Board VCS Reps

In September 2021, Joanna Martindale from Hangleton & Knoll Project and Tom Lambert from The Carers Centre for Brighton & Hove have been elected by Community Works Reps as VCS representatives on the Health and Wellbeing Board in Brighton and Hove.

The panel of reserve members who may contribute their knowledge in advance of meetings for the Reps to draw upon and attend in lieu if the Reps are unable to attend a meeting include:

  • Caroline Ridley (Impact Initiatives)
  • Geraldine Des Moulins (Possability People)
  • Gray Hutchins (Clare Project)
  • Mark Strong (Brighton Bike hub)
  • Nora Mzaoui (Wellsbourne Healthcare CIC)
  • Val Cane (Working 50+)

If there any issues you would like them to raise on behalf of your organisation and communities you support please email Magda Pasiut:

Warm welcome to our newly co-opted Reps

Children and Young People- Mental Health Rep: Rachel Brett, Director of Children & Young People at YMCA DOWNSLINK GROUP 

Rachel joined YMCA DownsLink Group in 1999, previously working as a Centre Manager in a young people’s supported accommodation project in Leicester, and prior to that had a number of roles in third sector and disability services. She has a MA (Dip SW) in Social Work specialising in third sector provision and has extensive experience in the strategic development of targeted services for children and young people, tendering and cross-sector partnership working. Rachel has held a number of senior management roles in the YMCA and was appointed to her current role of Director of Children & Young People in 2015. She leads on Therapeutic & Wellbeing Services and targeted children & young people’s projects; and holds organisational responsibility for Safeguarding and Trauma Informed practice. Rachel is Chair of B&H Young Homeless Working Group, a trustee at The Clock Tower Sanctuary and an appointed governor at Sussex Partnership Trust

Adult Skills, Employment and Learning Rep: Mandy Crandale, Operations & Development Manager for Possability People

Mandy has been with Possability People for nearly 8 years and worked across a variety of different projects before becoming a part of the senior leadership team, enabling her to bring her own lived experience of the barriers  beneficiaries face to the heart of strategic planning and decision making. One of my key achievements since joining the charity is founding community employment service, which operates across  regional footprint providing pre-employment and skills support to disabled people and enabling hundreds of disabled people to achieve their goals every single year. Mandy has worked closely with many learning and skills partners in the city and is keen to ensure the sector as a whole is represented and understood, as well as ensuring provision is accessible and inclusive for all of Brighton & Hove’s diverse communities.

LGBTQI Rep: Jacob Bayliss (pronouns: he/him), CEO of Switchboard 

Jacob is the new CEO of Brighton’s oldest LGBTQ organisation – Switchboard. Switchboard serve the health and wellbeing needs of LGBTQ communities across Sussex through a number of vital projects, provide community engagement & voice services, and provide training and consultancy around inclusion and affirmation of LGBTQ communities. Alongside his role at Switchboard Jacob is also Governor at the Sussex Community Foundation Trust, and Trustee at Live Through This – an LGBT Cancer Support Project. Jacob has been working in the third sector for over 10 years, and has lead and delivered local and national work in Australia, London and Brighton. He is passionate about creating meaningful impact for underserved communities through intersectional partnerships, and enabling communities to thrive through assets based approaches.

Mental Health Rep: Rachael Kenny (pronouns: she, her, hers), Director of Mental Health and Support Services at Brighton Housing Trust 

Rachael Kenny has lived and worked in Brighton and Hove and Sussex for the past twenty years. Formerly in NHS secondary mental health services where she was responsible for a wide programme of work to support people with lived experience of mental ill-health to become involved in the design delivery and evaluation of local services and more recently as Director for Mental Health at Brighton Housing Trust. She is a registered Social Worker.

TNBI Rep (which stands for trans, non-binary, intersex): Gray Hutchins (pronouns: they/them), Service & Development Manager at The Clare Project

Over previous years, Gray Hutchins has worked with various trans/TNBI-focused organisations including Trans Pride Brighton & Hove, engagement projects within LGBT Switchboard, and launched support spaces TNB Brighton & Hastings. The past two years they have been leading the growth and development of The Clare Project, and are now the Service & Development Manager for the charity as it enters their 20th year. Main passions around their work include psychosocial support via community-led spaces, development of grassroots TNBI groups, alongside sector-wide engagement on TNBI Inclusion & Awareness training.

Our sector representatives

Our members elect representatives from within our membership every two years to undertake this work and we co-opt additional reps as necessary. The next election will take place in 2020.

If you would like to find out more about the process or our representatives’ work please contact Magda Pasiut:


Help to become a representative

We have an informal shadowing programme for anyone within our membership who is considering standing in a future election or being co-opted.

The shadowing programme gives you the opportunity to meet existing representatives, observe meetings and learn more about the role of a representative.

To find out more about our informal shadowing programme get in touch on or 01273 234023

Key principles for representation

Our representatives work is framed and informed by our key principles for representation (PDF).

These principles speak to a range of stakeholders in the city and promote the unique strengths that the sector has to offer.

They also act as a platform for influencing, a basis for creating policy statements in priority areas and an opportunity to identify interests shared with public sector organisations and local businesses.

Recently, our Reps Council have been developed  ‘Key Messages and Recommendations’ to support them in their work of engaging with politicians in the run up to the local elections in Brighton and Hove in May 2019.

To find out more about our representation work get in touch on or 01273 234023 

Small groups and charities

We greatly value the work and impact of small groups and charities locally, and also recognise that they have unique support needs. We’ve worked with our small groups network to develop a position statement which describes what a small group is, and what they need to help them to grow:

Feedback from our representatives

Our representatives provide feedback from the meetings and events they attend on behalf of our members.