Meet the team

Meet The Staff And Trustees

Home-Start MAJIK is governed and managed by a group of Trustees. Trustees are all unpaid volunteers who come from a range of backgrounds and communities across Argyll & Bute. These include Education, Health, Police, Business and Finance.

Trustees work in partnership with staff and volunteers to support families and to give children the best start in life. They are appointed on the basis of their interest in Home-Start MAJIK and by their skills.

Roles and responsibilities are defined through Home-Start UK training, to make sure Trustees have the necessary qualities, skills and knowledge to govern effectively and responsibly ensuring that legal and financial obligations are met.

Our Staff

Sharon Erskine, Acting Manager and Coordinator 

My name is Sharon Erskine. I am the Acting Manager and I coordinate for the Bute Area of Home-Start MAJIK.

sharon erskine photo website take 2

I believe passionately in promoting positive environments for our children to grow and thrive in and for that reason alone I have chosen to use a baby photo of myself when I Blog. I consider myself fortunate to have grown up in a home where I was not only loved unconditionally but also valued and respected. I now have a large family of my own and have discovered over my 20 years of Parenting that life has a habit of tossing in the odd curve ball.  Supporting families while they deal with life’s challenges is a real privilege and I enjoy working with the Team and Families at Home-Start MAJIK.

Kelly Coats , Coordinator – Kintyre, Mid-Argyll and Islay

My name is Kelly Coats and I will be coordinating for the Kintyre area for Home-Start Kelly CoatsMAJIK. I was born in Wick, Caithness and lived there for most of my life, until moving to Campbeltown 10 years ago and it is now where I call home. When I left school I did a variety of jobs whilst studying with the open university. I then went on to university full-time at Paisley and obtained a BA in Social Policy and Sociology. I am delighted and honoured to be working with Home-Start MAJIK, as I feel it is very important to give back to the community. I cannot wait to meet all the families and volunteers and to continue the great work of a fantastic organisation.

Melissa McCrossan, Administrator and Coordinator(Cowal)

I am single Mum raising 4 children, 2 boys and 2 girls.Mel McCrosson I was Chairperson at the children’s nursery for 3 years and I have worked here at MAJIK since 2013.

It is my belief is that being involved in the community is key to a better future for our children. It is really rewarding doing my job and to be able to see the real benefits being brought to families in the community I live in and care about.

 

 

 

Ishbel Exley, Chairperson, Personnel Sub Committee, Health and Safety and Child Protection

Ishbel ExleyBorn in Inverness and left there when I was 10, but have spent most of my life in Denny. On leaving school I trained as a teacher for 5 years. I married and spent time with my husband on the ships. We went on to have 3 children and with my husband away for 5 months at a time I often felt like a single Mum. The support of family, friends and groups I joined showed me that I was not alone and there were other Mums like me. They also showed me the benefits of having that type of support and how important it was to me and my children. I have worked as a supply teacher and with support role with a child with autism. This sparked interest in new fields and ended up with me running the faculty for language disordered children with special needs.

I have enjoyed being a Beaver Scout leader for 12 years, a lot of organisation but great fun. In 2011 I took early retirement and moved to Tighnabruich. My children are now adults with fulfilling lives in various parts of the country and we enjoy are life here and being a holiday centre for friends.

Michael O’Donnell, Vice ChairmanTrustee

A retired Deputy Head teacher, previously worked in LochgilpMichaelO'Donnellhead High School for 25 years Consequently has has considerable understanding of older children. Considers his communication and interpersonal skills to be important tributes.

 

Peter Cartwright, Trustee

My main area of clinical practice in the NHS was in working as a psychotherapist with people presenting with complex trauma. Although formally retired from the NHS I still work for them 3 or 4 days a month in a training capacity across issues as diverse as personal safety, gender based violence, recovery, mental health, self harm, suicide, recovery, child development & attachment, personality disorder, dementia, etc. I also continue to work as a psychotherapist in private practice.

In addition to my work as a Trustee with Home Start MAJIK I am also a Trustee with Argyll & Bute Rape Crisis. I have also previously worked with the Children’s Panel and am currently a member of Kibble Panel for their Intensive Fostering Service.

 

Alan Gerrish, Trustee

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I started my working life in Norway before returning to Scotland to raise a family and retired in 2011 from a career in NHS clinical and public health dentistry as Director of Dental Services.

My daughter and son are both married with 3 children each, and, as a resident baby-sitter, I can say I have some understanding of the ups and downs of raising children.  My work also provided close experience of the difficulties faced by those who find themselves in challenging personal and social situations, and highlighted the need for co-ordinated support from external agencies to help support vulnerable groups and improve their life chances.

I think that Home-Start MAJIK is an excellent initiative in providing this support to families in the area, and helping to ensure that, from the earliest age, children might be able to develop to their maximum potential.  I am pleased to have the chance of working with my colleagues to help further these aims.