Who we are Meet the team Our Senior Leadership Team Helen Stevens - Chief Executive Officer Helen joined the STARS team in November 2016 and brings her extensive knowledge of working in the private, public and voluntary sectors in a number of different roles. She is a creative, strategic business leader who trained with the Institute of Leadership and Management and is passionate about both developing and delivering the highest levels of service to our beneficiaries. Helen believes in building positive trusted relationships that enable effective partnership working. In her role, Helen has led the team through some key development changes including our rebranding; head-office move and opening of a second STARS center in Dorchester. Through her fundraising experience our staff team has grown to meet increasing demand for our specialist support services. She regularly meets with commissioners and statutory services seeking to improve support for survivors, making sure they have access to specialist services to help them in their journey of recovery. Helen is a non-executive director of her husband’s company; Trustee of a local charity and advisor to a newly established charity that she helped to establish. She is also a passionate gardener. Stuart King - Operations Director Stuart joined STARS in 2023 and brings with him an extensive knowledge of working in a variety of companies throughout his expansive career. From banking & HR in the City of London, working for the Priory in Drug & Alcohol rehabilitation, supporting Surrey Fire & Rescue Service’s training centre, working in Kosovo on contracts commissioned by the European Union’s United Nations Mission in Kosovo and setting up Chequepoint Money Transfer throughout the Balkans (similar to Western Union), through to returning to the UK and joining the care home industry for a number of years in a variety of roles such as Home & General Manager, Service Quality Manager through to Operations Director. In his private life, Stuart lives south of Winchester with his partner and their pets Poppy (a Red Labrador) and Oliver (an indoor Ocicat) and is a Trustee of the Repair Shop based in Winchester. He has an interest in cars, chocolate and cheese (not necessarily in that order) and enjoys gardening & a glass of prosecco as a way to relax. Holidays can be quite varied from relaxing cruises with Cunard to the more adventurous side following the Silk Road. Michelle Calvert - Clinical Director Michelle Calvert - MSc, BSc, Clinical Diploma, HRM Diploma, Clinical Psychotherapist. UKCP and EMDR UK Accredited. Michelle has worked in the field of mental health for 30 years and is now a specialist working with trauma and complex PTSD. She is a highly experienced Cognitive Analytic psychotherapist, supervisor and EMDR accredited Consultant practitioner. Michelle is trained in CBT and trauma group debriefing for major incident trauma. Previously, Michelle was the Clinical Lead for the Metropolitan Police within the EMDR trauma treatment service for the last 8 years, which has now developed into a large-scale treatment service. She therefore has expert knowledge of working with police officers, as well as firefighters and medical practitioner’s for complex trauma. Michelle and has also worked extensively with specialist officers working in sexual offences and child abuse units. Organisations Michelle has previously been involved with include London Fire Brigade, the Royal College of Physicians and the Priory Hospitals. Michelle has an extensive private practice and has been known in the public eye for her work as an EMDR psychotherapist with the Dowler family in the book MILLY by Gemma Dowler (Penguin 2017). Michelle was recognised as an ‘exceptional’ therapist by an EMDR UK president and works as both an individual and group psychotherapist, with an extensive range of diagnosis, psychotherapeutic and relational issues. She is now very excited to be working with STARS Dorset in the development and expansion of psychotherapeutic practice with its dedicated staff and dynamic leadership team. Michelle believes in achieving the highest standards of service for clients' needs by a planned clinical service and ensuring the most professional standards of practice by all the team. With a love for her 24 year old daughter as well as her beautiful horse, she describes STARS as having an extended family feel, which she is delighted to now be a part of. Our Management Team Di Gray - Head of Adult Independent Sexual Violence Advisor Service Awaiting bio. Natalie Giles - Head of Adult Counselling Natalie has worked within the Complex Needs and Domestic Abuse Sector for over 20 years. She previously worked in Southampton and London with homeless individuals and those living vulnerably with alcohol and drug dependency. Whilst in London she also worked outreach with women who were at risk of sexual exploitation. Before moving to STARS Natalie was the Manager for the Somerset Domestic Abuse Service and managed a staff team who worked directly with families and individuals at high risk of abuse and with those needing Refuge accommodation. During her time with the Domestic Abuse Service, she worked within the Safeguarding Unit at the Avon & Somerset Police Offices in Bridgwater as part of a Multi-Agency Team working with high-risk victims of domestic abuse. She has trained agencies on domestic abuse and has also spoken at National Conferences on the need for Health Providers to be aware of domestic abuse when talking to patients. She is a Safelives qualified Service Manager and has a BSC (Hons) Degree in Sociology, English Language and Linguistics. Donna Willsher - Head of Children, Young People and Families Awaiting bio. Alison Woodward - Training Lead Alison is a Supervisor, UKCP accredited Psychotherapist and Certified Transactional Analyst. She trained with Metanoia Institute initially and continues her learning to support her practice, most recently she has started working with EMDR. She works both in private practice in Bournemouth and for the Sexual Trauma and Recovery Service (STARS) in Dorset. Alison also runs training events for counsellors and other related professional organisations specifically related to working with Trauma. Alison has developed her experience in working with clients who have symptoms of complex PTSD. She works within a three-phase therapeutic trauma framework with her clients to ensure clinical safety and space to understand and resolve the intrusive symptoms that clients experience. She is passionate about finding effective ways to work with complex trauma clients, she has seen how recovery can and does happen when clients are given the time and space to work. Our Staff and Volunteers STARS has a large team of staff and volunteers to support clients in their healing journey. We employ a dedicated team of adult and child ISVAs who offer emotional support, information, and advocacy to our clients. Our ISVAs work closely with clients who have reported to the police or are contemplating doing so, providing them with the resources and knowledge to make informed decisions. Our counsellors at STARS help clients process and understand their trauma. Our team includes specialist counsellors who work with children and those who have experienced domestic violence. While some of our counsellors are paid, many are volunteers who generously donate their time and skills. Our business support staff are essential for our counselling services to run smoothly, having received therapeutic training that provides them with a deep understanding of our clients' needs. We recognize that our business support team is a critical part of STARS, and we value their contributions to our mission of providing compassionate care to our clients. Our Support Line, a core service and the foundation of our charity, is run by dedicated volunteers who have often been serving on the Support Line for many years. Our Support Line volunteers offer out of hours support to our clients. We recognize the crucial role the Support Line plays in our organization, and we are grateful to our volunteers for their loyal support in providing compassionate care to those who need it.