Meet the team

WHAG’s staff team bring a wide range of skills and experience to the organisation and work to WHAG’s values of support, empowerment and equalities.

If you’re interested in joining us, see our Careers page.

Kirsty, CEO

Kirsty RhodesI feel very privileged to be the CEO of WHAG and I am in the fortunate position of being able to say I love my job.

WHAG is an incredible organisation with a team of dedicated staff, supporting 1000+ people every year to change their lives for the better.

My background was as a nurse and whilst I would not call myself a nurse now, those skills have always come in useful, and as a support worker. I started working for WHAG in 1995 as a project manager and have progressed from there.

As CEO, I am instructed by the Board of Trustees to develop and deliver the organisations strategy. It has been my pleasure to work alongside the Trustees and staff to establish the organisation as a high quality deliverer of domestic abuse and women’s homelessness services.

In my free time, I am a taxi service for 2 beautiful boys and a keen football supporter with one of them. I also run (shuffle) sometimes, enjoy crafts, gardening, baking and cooking. My husband is at the end of the list and we speak whenever we get the chance!

Julie, Finance and Administration Manager

Julie is WHAG’s Administration and Finance Manager.  She has been a member of staff since August 2000, working full-time hours across 4 days.  Her role is varied, challenging, interesting and enjoyable.  She is responsible for all financial activity within the organisation, along with ensuring administration process and practices are effective and efficient.  She is also WHAG’s Company Secretary and line manages the Finance and Human Resources Officers.

In her free time, Julie is an avid Manchester City FC supporter, active in her local supporters’ branch, and she is their ticket secretary – mainly so she gets access to hard-to-find match tickets!  She also has 3 fabulous cats, is a carer, and enjoys travelling and eating out.  She loves the outdoors, nature and the sea.  She is a trained person-centred counsellor, practises meditation, and really enjoys trying out new activities.  Oh, and she says shopping isn’t bad, either…

Katie, Operations Manager

Katie, Operations ManagerI am the Operations Manager for WHAG and in comparison to my colleagues, I am fairly newly appointed, having only started with the organisation in March 2018.

I am a university graduate with a combined BA honours degree and my background is predominantly in domestic abuse and mental health sectors. In recent years, more specifically managing services which support clients with primary mental health diagnoses, both single female survivors and families affected by domestic abuse and childhood sexual abuse. I have always had a passion for supporting others and genuinely love to see people achieve their own goals in life. Outside of work, I love to spend time with my family and socialising with friends. I have an additional full time job as a step-mum to a little boy that I adore and wouldn’t have our busy lives any other way.

I am really enjoying my new role as operations manager and I feel proud to say what I do and believe that we are at a really exciting time within the organisation. I look forward to my continuing career with WHAG, growing both personally and professionally in role.

Sharon, Rose Court Service Manager

My role at WHAG started just over 6 years ago as an evening assistant support worker, during this time my career progressed to a daytime support worker and currently I am now the Service Manager of Rose court. Dedication, determination and working hard has enabled me to get where I am today within WHAG.  I am currently responsible for managing support staff to ensure our service user’s needs are met. My staff team are extremely passionate about supporting vulnerable women and empowering them to gain confidence, independence and to take control of their own lives.

Following experiences of family issues whilst growing up I became increasingly passionate about helping others especially by supporting vulnerable women, with housing and emotional needs. I feel my personal circumstances as a youngster has enabled me to support service users with empathy and understanding.

I left school without qualifications and went straight in to employment.  At the age of 26 I became a mature student and attended college to gain my GCSE’s, I gained qualifications in English, Maths, Law and psychology; continuing on to university to complete a BA Hons English degree which I gained at the age of 34 (I am proof it is never too late) across the years I have also complete a number of short courses including Counselling, Mental health, behaviour that challenges etc.

Outside work I am a proud mum to 2 adorable sons and a soon to be grandma; I also spend a huge amount of time with my 2 beautiful cats Nala and Elvis who greet me at the front door whenever I get home.

I enjoy spending time with friends, visiting family in Liverpool, swimming and taking long scenic walks. I currently volunteer with Rochdale council as an ‘Active Citizen’ and work alongside the police to complete this role

Ruth, Bury Service Manager

I graduated with a BA honours degree in Criminology, beginning my career with the youth offending team. During this time, I worked directly with children and young people involved in crime or criminal activity, focused on prevention, reduction and the impact of youth crime and anti-social behaviour.

 In 2010 I joined WHAG taking on the role as community drop in worker. This role involved planning, promoting and facilitating women’s group work sessions including the Freedom Programme and The Recovery Toolkit. Following this, I joined the domestic abuse floating support team, providing one to one support to women and men.  

I am now the Service Manager for Bury, passionate to lead a strong, dedicated team to ensure that service user’s gain empowerment, strength and overall independence leading to a bright and successful future.

WHAG Bury service will continue to combat domestic abuse and safeguard children and vulnerable adults through early intervention, awareness raising and multi agency working.

Kate, Service Manager, CWAC

Kate, Service Manager, CWaCKate is WHAG’s Service Manager for the Cheshire West and Chester Supportive Accommodation Service.  She has over 14 years’ experience of working in the domestic abuse sector.  She is a domestic abuse and stalking specialist, with particular expertise in managing front-line accommodation and outreach services.  She currently manages the refuge, dispersed refuge and resettlement services. Kate has a specific interest in delivering services that focus on well being, strength and recovery.  People who come to WHAG have often experienced severe trauma.  It is important our services recognise this, understand the impacts this can have, and appreciate related  experiences such as drugs, alcohol and self harm.

Kate is passionate about providing this service, alongside providing homely and uplifting physical environments and therapeutic support to help clients recover from their experiences.  She is proud to lead a team that empowers clients to find independence and have the confidence to regain control of their lives.. Kate has a Postgraduate Certificate in Voluntary and Third Sector Management (Level 7), is an AAT Qualified Accountant and Independent Stalking Advocacy Caseworker (ISAC). She has Board and Treasurer experience at Chester Women’s Aid.  Kate’s approach personally and professionally is to be sincere, fair and kind.

Gill, Service Manager Complex Needs CWAC

Gill, Service Manager Complex Needs CWaCFollowing experiences in her own life Gill has been passionate about helping people through difficult times in their lives, particularly people who have experienced trauma and domestic abuse.

Gill has worked in a number of roles helping people directly for over 20 years. For the past 10 years her main focus has been domestic abuse, and her role now involves helping the most vulnerable and complex people who have a number of issues and needs due to the trauma they have experienced. Gill says the work can be exhausting, but that helping the most vulnerable people is also hugely rewarding and worthwhile, and she loves making a difference with the work she does.

Katalin Frey, Business & Development Manager

I have joined WHAG in May, 2019

After graduating I was lucky enough to be offered the opportunity to join a large organisation and gain experience through a Business Graduate Scheme which allowed me to work with 8 different departments within a 2 years period. Following the scheme I stayed to support the Finance team and became a Finance Project Manager, but in reality I knew that I spent 7 years studying 2 Business courses in higher education because I wanted to gain comprehensive knowledge to be able to support a business as a whole, rather than concentrating on one aspect of it.

WHAG has offered me the opportunity to contribute to achieving its goals, by doing what I’m passionate about, identifying opportunities for growth, improvement and finding ways to fix problems regarding the entire organisation, while working alongside incredible people, for a cause that actually matters and makes a real difference by changing people’s life.

In my spare time, I play table football. As a Team GB member, I represent Great Britain at International competitions, World Championships and World Cups. My other hobbies include cycling and sailing and other sports.

Get in touch

Get in touch