Our trustees

Annette Ackland
Annette aims promote inclusion of all special needs children and young people in East Sussex and to provide support and outreach services for families. She now runs both Saturday clubs as well as the parents support group. Annette is passionate about her role choosing to work as a volunteer. Annette has been a registered foster carer and host other to foreign students since 2006.


Mike Woods
Mike is now retired having had a background in specialist taxation consultancy and accountancy. For Embrace (East Sussex) he is a Trustee and Treasurer. A family man who is married with two adult daughters and two grand-daughters all of which he enjoys daily involvement and fun. In retirement Mike is happy to volunteer his time towards charitable purposes. He is also a volunteer weekly Room Guide for the National Trust and additionally regularly supports several Charitable concerns to different degrees.

Keely James
Hello! I’m Keely and I’ve been a parent trustee at Embrace since 2018. My favourite colour is purple, I have 2 cats, I’m originally from West Wales and I’m expecting my 2nd baby in October 2020! My daughter, Niamh, was born in 2016 with many complex health needs as a result of a completely unique chromosome anomaly. I felt really alone and like no-one in the world could possibly understand what we’d been through, and what we were facing, until I found Embrace. I felt at home and like I had a port in the storm that was our life; they just knew. As a result of our interactions with Embrace our life slowly but surely got easier and I found that I wanted to help to make a meaningful difference to the lives of other parents who found themselves in similar situations to us. So, when Embrace approached me to become part of the team I couldn’t refuse!