Trustees Week 2021 – Meet Kate Davies-Poole

The 1st – 5th November 2021 is Trustees Week!

Trustees’ week is an annual event to showcase the great work trustees do and how the dedication they give to charities truly makes a difference. We’d like to take this week to thank all of our Trustees for playing a vital role, volunteering their time, and working together to make important decisions about the work we do here at Rochdale and District Mind. 

If reading our stories this week has inspired you to become a Trustee, take a look at this page. We’re always looking at expanding the skills within our Board

Meet our Trustee Kate Davies-Poole…

I am from Shaw in Oldham and went to primary and secondary school there and I now live in Lees.  I was never interested in education and disliked the whole experience frankly!  I left school after one year doing A-levels, which I kind of fell in to as I was quite poorly when I sat my GCSE’s and for the whole summer afterwards.
After one year of studying towards A-levels and working part time at a taxi firm, I got myself a Modern Apprenticeship and worked at a haulage firm in Royton.  I found that that didn’t really suit me either and left there to go and work in the legal department of a large company in Manchester.

I spent the next 15 years with that company, working my way up from General Office Administrator to Office Manager.  I loved my time there and met many wonderful colleagues, some of whom I am still in touch with.  I had a brief six month change of job during that time, I went to a private law firm in Manchester, hated the cut throat nature of private practice, and went back to my previous job.

Whilst at this company, I trained as a counsellor part time and qualified at 29.  It turns out I like education when I get to choose when and how!  My training was a fabulous experience once I had found the right college after a false start at one.  I worked full time, studied part time and worked at two voluntary jobs part time for around 3 years – I was super busy but super satisfied!

I realised that it was not sustainable so once I was qualified I dropped down to working full time at the legal department and doing voluntary counselling part time at a mental health charity in Longsight, Manchester.

In 2013 I got married to Craig after being together for 15 years and engaged for about 8 years – it was amazing!  I had never wanted all the attention that comes with a wedding but on Christmas Eve Eve in 2012, we were sat wrapping gifts together and I said ‘hey, should we get married next year?’ and Craig said ‘yeah!’ – we made it what we wanted and we loved it.

In 2014/15, after several structural changes within the business that I worked, I was made redundant from my ‘day job’ which left me reeling for a long time.  I took a break from everything in my life.  As I healed, I decided to concentrate fully on my counselling practice.

I continued to do voluntary counselling, after a year off, but soon found out that the charity I was working with was not being managed well and years of funding cuts had left it in tatters.  My experience with my redundancy led me to realise that it was not a safe place for me to be any longer and I decided, with a heavy heart, it was time for me to leave.

After this, I was taking stock of my experiences and an old colleague suggested I look at trustee work.  I researched this a little and decided that I would like to go back to a mental health charity and found that Rochdale and District Mind were looking for a new trustee!  I was very nervous and excited to start this new journey.

I have continued to build a private practice in counselling and I love what I do.  I have worked with lots of clients from different backgrounds and different experiences.  I have worked with some trainee counsellors as they start their own journey.  Importantly to me, I am a counsellor but I am also a client.  I have experienced my own pain and issues and I continue to do so – I am human.  I continue to grow and learn every day.

I feel honoured to be part of the team here at Rochdale and District Mind.  I feel I gain as much as I give – being part of a team again means the world to me and to know that what I do can be helping is awesome.  I have so much respect for all of the staff, volunteers, service users and fellow trustees.

I am sure there is more to me than what is written on this page, and if anyone wants to get in touch please do feel free to grab my contact details from someone in the management team within the office.



Posted on: 1st November 2021

back to news