Everyone’s survival story is different and the effects of abuse vary from person to person. We believe, we listen and we understand, because many of the Support for Survivors family are fellow survivors too.
Our charity is run by a dedicated, compassionate and kind community of volunteers and trustees. Find out a little more about our trustees below.
Maxi Leigh (Founder)
From the deepest valleys of pain and depression, Maxi has climbed to the highest hights. A survivor of countless traumas of sexual, psychological and physical abuse throughout her childhood and adolescence, Maxi has turned despair into hope through an extraordinary career of helping and supporting people suffering the most abject pain. After years of suffering severe mental health problems, which led to her attempt to take her own life, Maxi summoned all of her strength to turn things around. Her work has taken her all over the world and touched thousands of lives. She’s met the Pope in Rome, the Duke of York, addressed dozens of events in aid of raising awareness of the traumas of childhood abuse, and through her work, has directly cared for victims of the type of abuse which nearly cost her life. The recipient of numerous awards, Maxi has been nominated to be an ambassador to The World Health Innovation Summit while advising government, NHS and social care leaders at a national level, and through a number of victim-support and mental health organisations in Nottingham. Hear Maxi’s story on the Life Story, Life Lessons podcast.
Jeremy Taylor (Chair)
Jeremy spent 30 years working for the NHS, starting as an operating theatre orderly and two-decades later, the CEO of the largest NHS Trust in the country. After this, he worked with genocide survivors in Rwanda. Jeremy has a passion to helping abuse survivors, as well as those with mental illness and people with learning disabilities.
Christine Gibbon (Secretary)
Christine is a recently retired teacher. After meeting Maxi several years ago, she was inspired by her passion to find ways in which she could use her knowledge and lived-experience to improve outcomes for other survivors. When Maxi discussed setting up Support for Survivors, she was keen to support and came on board as a trustee.
Dani is a business psychologist focused on issues of organisational growth and transformation. She started as a trustee in 2017 after finding out how prevalent child abuse is in our society and the devastating effects it has on many people’s lives. Dani uses her skills developed over her career to help the charity and is constantly in awe of the work Maxi and our volunteers do to support survivors.
Debbie is a solicitor and has worked with a number of abuse survivors, assisting them with claims for compensation against the local authorities that placed them in unsuitable placements during childhood. She met Maxi through her work and was inspired by the amazing work she did, so joined as a trustee in 2019. Debbie loves being able to volunteer her time for the Charity to help us continue providing invaluable care to abuse survivors.
Ricky started as a trustee in 2021, initially helping with the rollout of the Support for Survivors website that you see today. He’s spent his career helping organisations with their communications and marketing, and loves to help Support for Survivors do the same. As a survivor of child abuse, Ricky is passionate about the work of Support for Survivors and is humbled to be part of our community.