Seashell Trust's 10 out of 10: Julie Besbrode

Seashell Trust Quote graphic featuring pic of Julie Besbrode

To celebrate our decade as Seashell Trust, we are sharing ten top people who have been at the heart of our family during the last ten years – staff, volunteers, supporters and most importantly our extraordinary students and their families.

Let us know who else you think is 10 out of 10!

Businesswoman Julie Besbrode has her sights firmly fixed on Seashell’s exciting future after the charity’s transformation in the last decade.

The Seashell Trust director and Fundraising Appeal board member said: “I’ve noticed what an incredible job has been done in raising the profile of the charity, particularly over recent years.

“When I first got involved it seemed to be a generally unknown organisation, even in local circles, but now, it has become a well-known charity on a national scale – a role model for other SEN charities to look to for guidance.”

“2018 marks a new era for Seashell as we welcome our new CEO and Principal, Jolanta McCall. Mark Geraghty was a tough act to follow, but Jolanta’s drive and enthusiasm is infectious and it’s already clear to see that her commitment to the organisation comes from the heart.

“I am excited about her plans to develop Seashell as a national centre of excellence and a national assessment centre for complex needs alongside the innovative use of technology. Her plans to provide early intervention and services for the under-fives at Seashell and through care in the home will provide life-changing support for families in the local region and on a much wider national scale, establishing Seashell as a leading light in the sector.

Two events in last decade stand out for Julie. The first is the opening of the 17 new homes for our children and young people funded by the multi-million pound Transforming Lives appeal.

Julie said: “At the launch event, they proudly welcomed guests to their new homes and it was an absolute pleasure to see their excitement and enthusiasm for their new surroundings.”

And this year, the charity’s tenth as the Seashell Trust, it was named for Best Not-For-Profit Organisation for the second time in three years at the Stockport Business Awards

She said: “This is testament to the dedication of the staff and makes me immensely proud to be associated with the organisation. More families and their children are benefitting from our expertise than ever before - from multi-sensory impaired babies accessing our innovative Stay and Play scheme, disabled and non-disabled children regularly attending our CADS sports camps, to parents and carers receiving advice via our Family Services programme.

“Seashell’s Vision encompasses everything that is great about the organisation: ‘For the children and young people in our care to be safe, happy and to achieve the best possible outcomes and that they are valued and valuable members of their communities’.

Julie summed up: “Ensuring our students are valuable as well as valued is the key for me. It is what makes life at Seashell so inclusive and progressive for all our students – teaching them to be the best they can be and giving them a purpose and standing in the community.”