Meet the DWELL UK team
These are the people who make DWELL UK possible and include facilitators and staff including specialists in Dietetics, wellbeing and the academics who study the outcomes.
Julie Webster is a registered dietitian, who has specialised in diabetes for the majority of her career. Julie has worked for Medway Community Healthcare (MCH) since 1999. MCH is a social enterprise. A social enterprise is a business with a social purpose that reinvests all the money it makes back into the business, or the local community, so that when a social enterprise profits, society profits.
Very early on in her career Julie developed group education sessions for people with Type 2 diabetes because of her belief in the power of the group approach. Julie became a DAFNE educator and later lead on the development of a programme for people with Type 1 diabetes, based on the Bournemouth model, called MINT1E (Medway Intensive Type 1 Education), taking this programme through the process to become accredited with QISMET (Quality Institute for Self-Management, Education & Training).
It is because of this background in diabetes education that Julie and MCH were invited to be part of the DWELL (Diabetes and WELLbeing) European research project.
Jane is a registered dietitian who qualified in 1982 and has spent most of her career specialising in diabetes.
Jane has been grateful to be involved in DWELL as it encompasses all the things she has always believed to be important when helping people with diabetes manage their lives well. She also has a personal interest in living well with diabetes as she was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 1974. She feels passionately that with the right information people with diabetes can leed fulfilled lives.
Jane has a particular interest in wellbeing and the role diet and exercise has on all types of diabetes.
As part of Jane's passion for providing Diabetes education she has been delighted at the opportunity to share her knowledge by putting together this website.
Rachel Lowrie is a Speech and Language Therapist working for MCH. She also leads the MCH Singers, a community choir, and Dwell ukuleles, a beginner group for Dwell participants. As part of her professional and personal life she has explored aspects of wellbeing and living well with chronic illness including Mindfulness practice, music for wellbeing and connection to the body. As part of the Dwell project, she leads sessions focussing on Wellbeing using Mindfulness and Music as vehicles for wellbeing and encourages discussion to implement a personal wellbeing practice.
Nicola Cook has worked for MCH for 16 years. Currently besides her PA role to one of the
senior managers at MCH Nicola is providing project support to two EU funded projects CASCADE and DWELL.
In her role as project support officer for DWELL Nicola is responsible for pulling together all the evidence that has to be submitted to the EU and also for entering in all the details for the financial claim that goes in every 6 months. Her role involves organising meetings and travel arrangements and supporting the DWELL programme lead.
I have been a workshop leader at the Blackthorn Trust for over twenty years, teaching cooking and baking.
My task within the Dwell project is, initially to interview participants explain the research angle, record weight, height, and do a HbA1c test. I plan the weekly menus, using the nutrition principles learnt in the education sessions.
Personally, I find this work extremely rewarding, as I witness profound positive changes to people’s lives. Along with the physical benefits, the majority express the joy of taking control over their diet and lives with the resultant improvement in mental health and a sense of empowerment.
I am a Research Fellow at Canterbury Christ Church University (CCCU), where I have worked for the last 12.5 years in the Faculty of Medicine, Health and Social Care. As you know, DWELL is a research study, and the CCCU team are responsible for the evaluation of the programme. There are a team of us working to collate and analyse information that will feed into a final report about DWELL. My role in the team means that I meet DWELL participants at MCH at the end of their 12-week programme to help with completion of the ‘DWELL Tool’ questionnaire (the results of which are processed by my colleague Rachael Morris). I also run end of programme focus groups where I ask participants for their feedback on their experiences of DWELL, which is a very valuable part of the evaluation. Additionally, I meet Jane regularly to collect all the information that she gathers as part of the evaluation. I am proud to be part of the DWELL project and I am so encouraged to hear about the positive impact it is having on peoples’ lives.