“I spent weeks phoning around London hospitals and bereavement centres but could not access a group like this – one that simply brings people together to share their stories of loss in an intimate, informal, and accepting context.”
“Knowing that there is something there is enormously reassuring.”
"Just being in a room with people who understand creates a very deep and subtle empathy, without people realising they are doing it."
"I have very warm memories of our Retreat week end in 2015"
Deepa is the Chair of The Loss foundation. She is passionate about music, fighting injustice and nurturing reciprocity, wisdom and creativity in our world. Her past roles have included being a music education producer for BBC radio, a campaigner on HIV/AIDS for Action Aid, and as a Co-Managing Director of Creative Partnerships (a national UK Government Initiative on creativity in schools). She currently consults and facilitates change programmes for organisations globally using the art of collaboration, conversation and contemplation.
Likes (or more accurately loves): Mangoes, silence, Mohammad Ali
Dislikes: Reality TV (but can't help watching), being impatient with herself and others, wanting to buy new shoes when she is unhappy
Lizzie joined the team in 2014 shortly after meeting Kirsten Smith in Oxford and learning about The Loss Foundation and their inspirational work. She is a regular facilitator of both the Oxford community support groups and student support groups. Lizzie believes it is a privilege to work for such a great charity and is continuously humbled by the stories shared by group members, the support they offer one another, and the difference that sharing an experience can have with others who understand the experience of loss. Professionally Lizzie has worked in a range of mental health settings, and is currently finishing her doctorate, specialising in Post-traumatic Stress Disorder.
Likes: Mountain hikes, spaghetti, the sea
Dislikes: Wasps, peas, scratchy wool
Francine has been involved in the charity since it began in 2010 and was part of the small team helping Erin in it's development. She is a regular support group facilitator, contributes to the charity's fundraising arm and sits on the board of trustees. Francine recently qualified as a Clinical Psychologist, and has conducted her doctoral research thesis in collaboration with The Loss Foundation to examine how spouses make sense of bereavement following cancer.
Likes: Plants and flowers, feta, being silly
Dislikes: Long hairs on sponges, queuing when in a rush, horror films
Helen’s connection to The Loss Foundation goes back to it’s earliest formation and the love that inspired it's birth. Her role as advisor remains one of support and imagining the future together. She is a Professor of Fashion & Science at The University of The Arts London and currently works in several unexpected ways for the plight of the global refugee crisis through her work with the UNHCR.
Likes: Humans, old trees, sun
Dislikes: Wasting time, liquorice, lack of sleep
Beth joined The Loss Foundation in 2014, and volunteers as a support group and event facilitator. She also contributes to the development of the charity by being in two of the charity's committees, the Show the Love and the Make it Happen committees. Beth also works in the NHS as a paediatric doctor.
Likes: Chocolate, optimism, netball
Dislikes: Mice, tea with sugar, feeling tired
Ruth joined the board of trustees in 2015 to help advise the charity on communications strategy and management. Currently Director of Communications for a technology company, Ruth is a former journalist and has a degree in politics.
Shereen joined The Loss Foundation at it's inception and is both a Trustee and event facilitator. Currently working as the Deputy Head of Student Experience at City University London, Shereen also has an MSc in Voluntary Sector Management and over 15 years experience of working and fundraising for cancer led charities, children charities and mental health charities.
Likes: Travelling, cheese, team sports
Dislikes: Lack of sleep, public toilets, dogs barking
Kirsten has been involved in The Loss Foundation since it's creation in Erin's living room over garlic bread and a cheeseboard. She is a Clinical Psychologist and Research Fellow at the University of Oxford where she is responsible for running The Oxford Grief Study, a large scale investigation of the psychological processes involved in adaptation after loss.
Likes: Ottolenghi, antipodean baristas, brainstorming
Dislikes: Cycling, Oxford winters, when cashiers put the change on top of the notes
Edward has been a barrister for almost 20 years specialising in commercial and regulatory law. He joined The Loss Foundation as a trustee in 2018 with the aim of putting some of his knowledge and experience as a barrister to good use outside of a courtroom. He’s a committed member of the team and even managed to persuade his 73 year old father to do a 100-mile bike ride around London in the pouring rain to raise much-need funds money for the charity.
Likes: cycling, coffee and cake (the perfect combination)
Dislikes: motorbikes, early starts, cold-callers
Sarah joined The Loss Foundation as a group facilitator in 2017. She works in communications for a social enterprise that helps leaders develop their ability to have a positive social impact. She is currently doing a psychology MSc part-time, with a view to training as a clinical psychologist. She also volunteers for a mental health helpline and previously volunteered as a befriender for people with learning difficulties.
Likes: Agony aunt columns, pretzels, Hampstead Heath
Dislikes: Getting up early, Haribo, housework
Jess feels incredibly privileged to be a volunteer for The Loss Foundation having admired Erin and her passion for the cause since the charity was founded in 2010. She has been a facilitator for the support groups since 2012 and the bereavement retreats since 2013, and feels that being part of this dynamic and innovative charity has been a truly humbling experience.
Jess is a medical doctor, training to be a general practitioner in London, and encounters illness and loss regularly. Through her work with The Loss Foundation she feels better equipped to talk to patients and their families about bereavement, and also bring some of those skills into her consultations. Jess is hugely proud of the work we do at The Loss Foundation and is excited to be part of this ever evolving organisation, and what the future brings with regards to bereavement support and research in this area.
Likes: Cooking, baths, panda bears
Dislikes: Baked beans (yuk!), spiders, scary movies
Emily became inspired by the passion of her peers working at The Loss Foundation, so she decided to join them in their support to those going through bereavement. Emily works as a Clinical Psychologist specialising in the field of adult mental health. She also fosters cats.
Likes: Animals, trees, autumn
Dislikes: Cruelty, injections, forgetting things
Emma joined The Loss Foundation in September 2015 and has been honoured to join such a welcoming and dedicated team. She currently works as an Assistant Psychologist in the NHS, working with individuals who experience complex depression, anxiety and trauma. From this she has learned how powerful support groups can be in providing a safe space to share experiences without the worry of judgment, and has witnessed how they can foster hope and empowerment. She is excited to contribute to the ongoing development of this compassionate charity.
Likes: Rugby, running, red velvet cake
Dislikes: Flying, daddy long legs, scary movies
Sarah joined the board of trustees in 2018 to help advise the charity on all things HR related. Sarah is currently a People Partner for a technology company, following a number of global HR roles in the finance industry.
Eirini has been volunteering as a facilitator for the support groups in Oxford since May 2016 after having heard about The Loss Foundation's work through a colleague who was already volunteering. Having to go through the loss of a loved one is one of the most challenging experiences in anyone’s life, and Eirini finds it inspiring and heart-warming that people have the courage to go to a support group and share their thoughts on grief. Eirini feels privileged to be a part of such a passionate team that is dedicated to providing a welcome space for people to freely share their thoughts and talk about their bereavement experiences. Her time volunteering has been a rich learning experience on grief, bereavement support and mostly, human strength.
Likes: Extra dark chocolate, science fiction, jogging on a rainy day
Dislikes: Kiwis, slow internet connections, hitting her toe on the corner of the bed
Christine joined The Loss Foundation as a group facilitator in autumn 2017. She is currently studying for a MSc Psychology at the University of East London, with the hope to eventually train as a Clinical Psychologist. She is a passionate believer in bringing more compassion into our daily lives.
Likes: singing, scandi crime series, the seaside
Dislikes: rain, jelly, rush hour commutes
Paris joined The Loss Foundation in 2015 after being struck by the vision the charity has - to provide a space to talk about bereavement openly. Paris is currently working as a Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapist in the NHS.
Likes: Animals, running, a cup of tea
Dislikes: Doing the ironing, being tickled, liquorice
Paul has been volunteering with The Loss Foundation for several years. He has a vast amount of experience working in mental health and the NHS. He takes a great interest in the well-being of others, using all of his skills and experience to help people as best he can.
Likes: KFC, 1 day cricket, sleeping
Dislikes: Early morning wake-ups, Brussels sprouts, being cold
Hjördis joined The Loss Foundation as a group facilitator in 2017 whilst completing her PhD in psychology at the University of Oxford. She heard about The Loss Foundation through her colleagues who have been part of the foundation since the start. She is currently doing research on trauma prevention in emergency workers and greatly believes in the power of people coming together to support each other.
Likes: Wind, the smell of freshly baked bread, traveling to new places
Dislikes: Alarm clocks, missing the bus, not finding the matching sock