During her working life, Chris has enjoyed varied and interesting roles working in both the public and voluntary sectors, in various Civil Service departments, The National Childbirth Trust (NCT), a secondary school, FE Colleges , the Citizens’ Advice Bureau, and Essex County Council. Her work roles included UK Immigration Policy, IT Systems Analysis, Antenatal Education, Breastfeeding Counselling and Postnatal support, Literacy and Numeracy support, teaching and training, including training breastfeeding counsellors, midwives and Health Visitors. Her final working roles were in Project Management of both local and national initiatives to support adults in deprived communities in achieving basic literacy and numeracy skills. Chris also represented the NCT on the local NHS hospital’s Maternity Services Liaison Committee and was an active member of the (then) Community Health Council.
In 2008, Chris became ill and was diagnosed a year later with Chronic Myelomonocytic Leukaemia (CMML), a form of MDS. Even with her own high-level research skills, Chris found the experience of getting access to information and support about this rare disease very challenging. Chris decided she would use her skills and experience to ensure that newly-diagnosed MDS patients have easy access to accurate and clear information about the disease and to MDS patient support groups. To this end, Chris joined the MDS UK Patient Support Group Committee in 2011 as Newsletter Editor and founded the MDS UK Essex Regional Support group in 2012. She is also a regular and active contributor to the Online Forum on the charity’s website, offering patient-to-patient support. She passionately believes in enabling people to make informed choices about their medical care.
Chris has been married to Steve for 44 years and shares with him a love of organic vegetable growing on their 2 allotments, as well as walking, travelling and completing cryptic crosswords! They have 3 adult children, a son-in-law and 2 daughters-in-law. They also now have 2 beautiful baby granddaughters.