Having been a volunteer for REinspired and then Team Leader, Julia became Project Manager for Earley and East Reading in 2013 while continuing to support Loddon primary school. Julia has been involved with children and young people’s work, in a variety of contexts, for 30 years. She is married to Steve and mum to Sam and Abi. Julia worships at St Nicolas Church in Earley where she is a member of the Church Council. She is part of the team leading and mentoring the Church’s young people’s groups.
Sue is our Team Leader for Earley St Peter’s, Aldryngton and Whiteknights primary schools in Earley and has been part of the REinspired team since 2003. She trained as a Secondary school Art & Design teacher and currently works part time at Maiden Erlegh school. She is married with two children and her family worship at Greyfriars church in Reading where she and her husband are currently involved in one of the worship bands.
Jackie is our team Leader for Radstock Primary school in Earley. She has been involved in Church Children’s work for many years. She also works part-time as a play leader with the under 5’s and runs a tea club for the over 60’s. She attends New Hope Church. She is married to Phil and they have 4 grown up sons.
Carol joined REinspired in December 2014 and is our marketing and communications coordinator, having moved from a role using similar skills in an Oil & Gas Exploration Company. She is keeping us connected with 21st century tools and our growing audience. Carol and her husband, Chris, worship at St John’s and St Stephen’s Church where they co-lead the young people’s group and are involved with the communications group at the church.
Alison is our Team Leader for Alfred Sutton and Redlands primary schools in East Reading. She originally trained as a nurse and midwife. She and her husband Cleve served in Nepal with UMN (United Mission to Nepal), from 1987 – 1997. They have six adult children and two grandchildren. They worship at Argyle Community Church, where they are involved in many ways.
Carrie is our team leader for New Town and St John’s Primary Schools in East Reading, Hillside School in Earley and Secondary Schools, The Bulmershe School and Maiden Erlegh in Wokingham and Reading. As well as being a trained primary school teacher, Carrie is mum to Abby and Laura, and wife to Rod. Carrie worships at Park United Reformed Church where she and her husband are both elders. She is very keen on using drama and other experiential techniques with the children to help them get ‘inside’ the Bible stories!
Sue is our Team Leader for Hawkedon Primary School. She has been involved in children’s and youth work at Brookside Church in Earley for many years, and has also enjoys volunteering for ‘Just Around the Corner’ (JAC), a local charity, mentoring young people in schools. She has a daughter Jess who is currently away at University. Of REinspired, Sue says it’s an amazing opportunity to educate today’s children in the Christian faith, with acceptance, fun and creativity.
Revd Keith Wilson
Keith is the minister at Lower Earley Baptist Church in Maiden Place. Originally from Scotland, Keith and his family have lived in Lower Earley since 2004. Prior to becoming a Baptist minister, Keith was a secondary school Geography and History teacher. Keith is a local school governor and is passionate that education should be excellent, relevant and – above all – fun!
“REInspired is a brilliant way to explore the Christian faith. Each session is educational, interactive and a great way for everyone to learn together. Working with REInspired I’ve learned so much about other Christians and their traditions. I’d encourage people to get involved in what is possibly the most exciting educational project being developed by churches at the moment.”
Richard taught in schools in Papua/New Guinea and Nigeria and then worked in adult education for Christian Aid and for the church in London. After ordination he worked in parishes in South East London and for many years served as a governor of a church secondary school in Lewisham. In 2014 he retired to Reading and started to volunteer for REinspired.
“RE Inspired offers children and young people a chance to learn more about the Christian faith from people for whom that faith is a living commitment. For me it is a real privilege to contribute to this. The fact that it is ecumenical as well as thoroughly professional is a real strength. The staff are fizzing with good ideas- and it’s fun! I am sure this is a model that can be replicated, given good planning and skilled staff.”
Revd Hannah Hobday
Hannah Hobday is one of the clergy at Earley St Peter’s, where she job-shares with her husband Philip. Since coming to St Peter’s in 2015 she has enjoyed being able to volunteer with REinspired, and is now delighted to be able to be involved at a trustee level as well. She is a governor at Earley St Peter’s Church of England Primary School and a trustee of the newly-formed Keys Academy Trust.
“It’s been wonderful to arrive in a new area and find there is such excellent provision for Christian engagement with schools – and it’s exciting to be able to join in and be part of it.”
While not a trustee, Emma plays a vital role as treasurer and company secretary. Emma is a qualified accountant but has been a full-time Mum since 1997 with three children. She says:
“I became involved with REinspired eight years ago, initially in the financials and then as a parent seeing and being involved in the organisation from my children’s perspectives. My own children have been engaged with REinspired sessions throughout their school years and have really benefitted from the creative approaches that have been offered. I have been privileged to be able to see the work develop both strategically and practically at both primary and secondary school levels.”
Revd Neil Warwick
Neil is priest-in-charge at St Nicolas Church, Lower Earley where REinspired has its office. Before entering ordained ministry, Neil worked in a senior role at World Vision. He is married to Helen who is a local GP and they have two children, Faye and John. He says of REinspired:
“It is without doubt the best expression of churches working ecumenically I’ve seen anywhere.”
Revd Jon Salmon
Jon has been a trustee since 2010 and has been minister at Trinity Church in Lower Earley since 2007. He has just become a community governor at Hillside Primary School in Lower Earley. Jon was curate at an inner city church in Bradford before moving to Reading and prior to ordination worked in international development for the UK government, living and working in Zimbabwe, Uganda and Tanzania. He is married to Jo and has three grown up children and three grandchildren.
“Three special things always strike me about REinspired: 1) it’s the local Christian community working together to nurture the children through creative and imaginative resources; 2) it’s brilliant that the aim is to reach all children; and 3) that REinspired builds relationships with the children as they move through the school.”
Chris Cobbold has worked with children and young people for around 30 years, in church settings and in the community. Over the years he has gained experience of taking assemblies, running small groups for children and teenagers and leading on camps.
Chris runs his own business as a housing, economics and regeneration consultant, after many years of being a director of a large international property consultancy. Chris is a Chartered Surveyor by profession and has a MBA from Manchester Business School.
Chris has been a RE volunteer for around three years and is a member of Wycliffe Baptist Church.
“It’s invigorating and a privilege to go from writing a report for a local authority on housing, to sitting on the floor with a dozen or so primary school children, helping them to understand a bible story, or to grasp what it is that Christians believe; and hearing their perspective on life from their own faith background. I always come away enriched by the conversations we have in our groups, even if in need of a bit of a lie down!”
Patricia Brown worships at Wesley Methodist Church. While not a trustee, she provides a vital role as secretary to the trustees.
“When I first heard about this initiative, I thought, ‘This is exactly the sort of thing the Churches should be doing.”