Meet the team

Michelle Anderson

CEO/Social Worker, OPALJoined OPAL in 2014. Michelle is a registered social worker and was recently appointed as our new CEO. Michelle is responsible to the Board of Trustees. Her role is to make sure that OPAL delivers the strategic priorities approved by the Board. She is responsible for the day to day management of the charity ensuring that people with a learning disability and autistic people are at the centre of everything OPAL does. Michelle is also a Stage 1 and 2 Practice Educator, assessing the practice of social work students on placement.

Cath Rafferty

Programme Manager, OPALJoined OPAL in 2001. Cath is responsible for managing the day service; making sure that everything is in place for people to choose and engage in activities, learn skills and have fun. Cath is also a qualified advocate and works with people to help them speak out and make informed choices.

Angela Clarke

Advocacy Coordinator, OpalJoined OPAL in 1999. Angela is a qualified advocate and is responsible for OPAL’s independent advocacy service, prioritising requests for help, allocating advocacy referrals to advocates and working with advocacy clients to help them understand the choices they have so they can make informed decisions.

Steph Beaumont

Day Service Coordinator, OPALJoined OPAL in 2008. Steph is a qualified Further Education teacher and member of the day service team,; planning and organising activities with group members and helping people to choose how they want to spend their time with OPAL. Her artwork and creative skills help to produce fabulous fun displays for our centre, and our social media feeds!

Neil Dockerty

Social Worker/Social Action Coordinator, OPALJoined OPAL in 2018. Neil is a registered social worker and is delivering the 'Learning Disability Friends’ project. This involves recruiting people in community groups and organisations who are willing to learn more about learning disability and autism so that they feel more confident to welcome and work with people. This only takes an hour and support is available from OPAL. Neil also works on the day service and will be developing volunteering and social action opportunities for people to take part in all sorts of activities and worthwhile projects

Becky Thompson

Lunchtime Assistant, OPALJoined OPAL in 2019. Becky helps out at lunchtime to make sure everything is ready on time for people to enjoy the meal they have chosen, and often helped to prepare!
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