Meet our team

Our Trustees & Patrons


  • Deepa Patel
    Deepa Patel

    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

  • Ruth Barnett
    Ruth Barnett

    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.

    Likes: dinners with loved ones; the seaside; small acts of kindness
    Dislikes: the usual list of injustice and cruelty; my chronic Zoopla addiction
  • Sarah Barrick
    Sarah Barrick

    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.

    Likes: Travel, Food and having a lay in on a Saturday morning
    Dislikes: Olives, Negativity and getting up early on a Saturday morning
  • Dr Francine Bear
    Trustee & Facilitator
    Dr Francine Bear
    Trustee & Facilitator

    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

  • Ori Becker
    Trustee & website guru
    Ori Becker
    Trustee & website guru

    Ori joined the Foundation in mid-2014 having known the Founder and a few of the facilitators. Initially he wanted to see how he could help the Foundation by volunteering, little did he know that by joining he would be the one who was helped. He knows how that reads, like a cheesy Hallmark card/after school special, but it is the truth. Ever since joining he has been dealing with his own bereavement in a way he had never done before. Being a part of this great organisation means he is learning so much about himself, how to grieve, loss and love. The wonderful work that the Foundation does on a daily basis is very much inspiring and fulfilling.

    Ori's official responsibilities are to manage all things technical on behalf of the foundation and it’s website; aiming to try and make the facilitators’ and Director’s jobs are a little easier by helping out in any way possible.

  • Edward Levey
    Edward Levey

    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

  • Rebecca Mahallati
    Rebecca Mahallati
    Rebecca is a highly experienced strategic and insightful senior fundraiser.  She has worked in the third sector since 2005 - spending 10 of those years at Cancer Research UK - where she honed her skills and led one of CRUK's high-value fundraising teams.
    Likes: Jane Eyre, crumpets, pots of tea
    Dislikes: bad manners, moths, celery
  • Shereen Sally
    Shereen Sally

    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

  • Dr Kirsten Smith
    Trustee & Facilitator
    Dr Kirsten Smith
    Trustee & Facilitator

    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

  • Professor Helen Storey MBE
    Professor Helen Storey MBE

    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

  • Peter Osborn
    Peter Osborn
    Peter started attending The Loss Foundation support groups after the death of his wife Gayle in 2010, and became a Trustee in 2016. He makes videos and organises workshops to promote skills of dialogue and organisational management for charities and social enterprises, and he runs singing and wellbeing weekends because... he loves singing.
    Likes: Singing, holidays, his wonderful family - especially Sid (grandson)
    Dislikes: Tomatoes, pomposity, horror films

Our Staff & Volunteers


  • Dr Erin Hope Thompson
    Founder and Director
    Dr Erin Hope Thompson
    Founder and Director

    Erin founded The Loss Foundation in 2010 after witnessing and experiencing the lack of support that was available when her father died from cancer in 2008. She is dedicated to building services to support people when they lose their loved ones to cancer.

    Erin was named as one of the 35 top business women under 35 in the UK by Management Today in 2017. In the same year she was awarded a Winston Churchill Fellowship. In early 2018 she used her fellowship to travel across the USA visiting bereavement organisations and learning about varied approaches to gold-standard bereavement support, with the aim to bring back ideas and plans to develop UK services.

    Erin also works as a Clinical Psychologist within the NHS and private sector. She works with families when there is a cancer diagnosis or long term health condition, as well as when there has been a bereavement. She also works  with general mental health in adults and children.

    Likes:  Climbing mountains, crosswords, popcorn

    Dislikes: Missing the trailers at the cinema, being late, waste

  • Rohan Misthry
    Charity Administrator
    Rohan Misthry
    Charity Administrator

    Rohan joined the Loss Foundation in 2020 as the Charity Administrator and is excited to work with this growing organisation and supporting people experiencing loss. Rohan has worked in the charity sector for almost a decade working in fundraising and programme coordination. He has also works as a counsellor in private practice. 

    Likes: Comedy improv, spicy food, nature

    Dislikes: Casserole, Mosquitoes, the word "Foodie"

  • Vanessa Babouram
    Head of Strategic Development
    Vanessa Babouram
    Head of Strategic Development

    Vanessa joined the Loss Foundation in January 2019 as our Head of Strategic Development and describes herself as an incorrigible learner.

    After a philosophy post-graduate degree at the Sorbonne in Paris, she completed a business administration master at ESCP Europe with a view to work in the film industry.

    Sometimes life has other plans, which saw her work in the finance sector for a decade, most recently as a Strategic Planning Director for a blue chip corporation and collaborating with diverse teams spread across 23 markets.

    Likes:  Story time with my son, lists, early morning promising rays of sun, the happy marriage of goat's cheese and late harvest Malbec

    Dislikes: Boredom, certainty masquerading as truth, spiders (in that order)

  • Akua Achampong
    Akua Achampong
    Akua joined The Loss Foundation in 2013. She was desperate to find a way to support the charity, and eventually found her place co organising the first ever annual comedy show and has been a part of the 'Make em Laugh', committee ever since. Akua has worked in TV production since 2012.
    Likes: Dimples, laughing and honesty 
    Dislikes: Pompous people, farts in lifts, diets
  • Dr Jessica Bilaney
    Dr Jessica Bilaney

    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

  • Emma Carr
    Emma Carr

    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

  • Paris Congrave
    Paris Congrave

    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 Davies
    Paul Davies

    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

  • Dr Beatrice Emmanouil
    Dr Beatrice Emmanouil

    Beatrice joined The Loss Foundation in 2015 when it was first setting up it's Oxford base, and is delighted to part of a team supporting people who have lost their loved ones. Beatrice wants to be there for people in their time of need and help them connect with others who have been through a similar experience. During working hours, Beatrice is a researcher at Oxford University and works in the NHS.

    Likes: The sea, olive trees, crickets singing

    Dislikes: Feeling cold, baked beans, forest fires

  • Dr Belinda Graham
    Dr Belinda Graham

    Belinda has been involved with the charity since it was founded and loves seeing the positive impact it has. Belinda contributes to the charity's research committee developments. Currently at the University of Oxford, Belinda is a Clinical Psychologist who specialises in cognitive therapy for people who are suffering after trauma.

    Likes: Fresh air, cooking, eating with friends

    Dislikes: Jet lag, bugs, washing up

  • Charlie Grant
    Charlie Grant

    Charlie joined the Loss Foundation after completing a conversion degree in Psychology. His experience with the Foundation groups has been powerful and deeply moving, it seems to offer an oasis for those struggling with loss.

    With an eye on further education in psychology, he would like to offer his support to the Foundation groups and events. He is keen on understanding mind

    Likes: Meditation, Biking, Snow

    Dislikes: Writing blurbs about myself, Lack of sunshine, Loss 

  • Dr Megan Hofmann
    Dr Megan Hofmann
    Megan is a Clinical Psychologist specialising in helping people who live with diabetes. She has worked in the mental health field for over 12 years and qualified as a Clinical Psychologist in 2014. Megan started facilitating groups with The Loss Foundation in 2012 and feels privileged to be part of such an important charity. 
    Likes: Musical theatre, almond croissants, making her baby girl laugh 
    Dislikes: Crammed underground trains, coriander, creepy crawlies  
  • Christine Lewington
    Christine Lewington

    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 

  • Hjördis Lorenz
    Hjördis Lorenz

    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

  • Katie Murphy
    Katie Murphy
    Katie has been volunteering as a group facilitator since September 2018, having heard about The Loss Foundation through another facilitator and friend. Having lost loved ones to cancer, Katie was motivated to join such a passionate team offering a compassionate and supportive space for people to share in their grief. Katie currently works in mental health services across London, with the aim of continuing her Psychology education. 
    Likes: yoga, sea swims, when Ireland beat the All Blacks (finally!)
    Dislikes: spiders, milk, losing things 
  • Tristan Neaves
    Tristan Neaves
    Tristan joined The Loss Foundation in 2017 as a group facilitator. He completed a psychology conversion MSc in 2016, having previously studied law at undergrad. In September he will be commencing IAPT PWP training at UCL while working as a low intensity PWP in Waltham Forest. Previously he volunteered at Mind as a support worker and at the University of Hertfordshire as a research assistant, studying the role of rationality in delusions.
    Likes: Mountains, curry, running
    Dislikes: Lateness, the district line, coriander 
  • Eirini Oikonomou
    Eirini Oikonomou

    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

  • Sarah O'Reilly
    Sarah O'Reilly

    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 

  • Dr Lucy Oldfield
    Dr Lucy Oldfield

    Lucy joined The Loss Foundation's Make It Happen committee in 2016 to help with strategy ideas for delivery of The Loss Foundation's awesome services. Lucy is an experienced Clinical Psychologist currently working in an NHS service, and also works at Goldsmiths, University of London where she lectures in Clinical Psychology. Lucy is a former Met police Detective Sergeant and has a degree in psychology. 

    Likes:  Being warm, playing tennis, anything with David Attenborough in it 

    Dislikes: Being cold, having a cold, people who are cold

  • Alexandria Phillips
    Alexandria Phillips
    Alex joined The Loss Foundation as a group facilitator in summer 2017 and is excited to be part of such a compassionate and supportive team helping those who are sometimes forgotten in their grief. She is currently working in community mental health specifically with adults who are experiencing depression, anxiety and trauma. She has previously volunteered with Mind and aspires to train as a clinical psychologist.
    Likes: Sun, cheese, laughter 
    Dislikes: Rain, hayfever and being stuck in traffic 
  • Aoife Ryan
    Aoife Ryan
    Aoife joined The Loss Foundation as a facilitator in autumn 2018. Having moved to London two years previously Aoife was keen to find a volunteering opportunity that allowed her to feel part of a community while making use of her skills. Aoife currently works as an assistant psychologist within a clinical health team for people with learning disabilities. 
    Likes: Running (or at least attempting to), Italian food and a good book
    Dislikes: mushrooms, shopping in crowds and not getting time in nature 
  • Michael Sakur
    Michael Sakur

    Michael joined The Loss Foundation as a volunteer facilitator in 2017, whilst studying in Oxford for a BA in English. As well as being a full time undergraduate student, Michael serves as a member of the Oxford University Peer Support team, which involves him with the coordination and provision of student welfare at a both a college and university level.

    Likes: Movies, veggie food, 80s dance music

    Dislikes: Sports, flying, early mornings
  • Dr Emily Shaw
    Dr Emily Shaw

    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

  • Dr Bethany Singh
    Dr Bethany Singh

    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

  • Lizzie Woodward
    Lizzie Woodward

    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

Some photos of our team in action

Next Events

26/01 January 26 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
27/01 January 27 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm