See below for a brief description of our contributors:
1. Aida Van der Pant holds a BSc in Health and Social Care, a diploma in Children and Young People’s Advocacy, and a certificate in European Children's Human Rights. Leveraging her personal experiences and 20 years of professional engagement, she has developed extensive knowledge in children's rights, advocacy, and mental health services. Currently serving as a Participation and Engagement Officer in the South East Region, she leads various Barnardo’s and government projects, maintaining collaborations with NGOs and government bodies to advocate for improvements in services for children and young people.
2. Colin Maginn has dedicated his career to working with children in public care since he was nineteen. His journey spans managing secure units, leading a team in a regional assessment center, and serving as the director of Ingleside Children’s Home in London. Collaborating with Dr. Seán Cameron, they pioneered the 'Emotional Warmth Parenting' approach for individuals working with children in public care. The pair recently published their groundbreaking work in a book titled "It's a privilege".
3. Ed Nixon initiated his career as a social worker, progressing over 26 years to become the Service Manager for children in care at a local authority. He later served as CEO of a company offering integrated residential care, education, and fostering services. Post-retirement, Ed leveraged his expertise as a social work consultant and Deputy CEO of the Independent Children’s Association. Since 2013, he has chaired the 'Every Child Leaving Care Matters' campaign, also serving on the advisory board of Career Matters and the board of Pure Insight, a Care Leavers Support charity. Additionally, he associates with the National Centre for Excellence in Residential Child Care, promoting high-quality care standards.
4. Jerome Harvey-Agyei is a dynamic individual who, despite growing up in the care system, channels his experiences into empowering the disengaged. His work, rooted in 'creative empowerment', focuses on harnessing creativity to drive personal growth. Jerome co-founded 'The Tope Project' and Tope Today and serves as a Senior Children & Youth Participation Officer at the Greater London Authority. Also a radio host and One Young World Ambassador, his impactful work has been recognized by BBC, ITV, Channel 4, and even led to nominations for awards such as the Waltham Forest council leaders' awards.