Our two founders, Angela and Alison, have always worked in the caring professions
With Angela starting out her career as a trained nurse and Alison a social worker. They are both also proud founder members of the Social Pedagogy Professionals Association.
Angela Hunt, Managing Director of To the Moon and Back Fostering
Angela has always had a great passion for social and health care. It was this passion that led her to gain substantial experience and success in operating social and health care for adults. Her introduction to fostering came when she was asked to lead a 12-week project for a foster agency. She instantly fell in love with the fostering sector and when offered the role of CEO for a foster agency in Essex, she jumped at the chance. This is where she met Alison and discovered they both shared a vision about the future of foster care.
Angela has also held several directorship roles in adult services across the UK. She is a voluntary non-executive director of Link to Change, supporting children and young adults who have experienced or are at risk of child sexual exploitation.
As an experienced leader and influencer of change, Angela’s decision to form To the Moon and Back Fostering is borne out of her desire to improve the levels of support for foster carers and the outcomes for young people leaving the care system. She embraces the principles of social pedagogy, which recognises that everyone is equal and has inherent potential. She puts her success down to her ability to listen and her determination to make improvement where it is possible.
Alison Kindred-Byrne, Director of Quality and Development of To the Moon and Back Fostering
Alison moved from accountancy into social work after nursing her mother through cancer. The experience made her think about the direction her own life was taking. “I started volunteering while I grieved for her and thought about what I wanted to do with my life,” said Alison.
She became involved in befriending adults with mental health problems, who were moving into supported accommodation, and helping at a day centre for adults with dementia. Then, an inspirational tutor sent her to work within a Family Service Unit and Alison discovered her passion: she wanted to work with children and families.
She since has worked in a wide variety of roles, including in a therapeutic residential children’s home working directly with children aged five to 11 who had been in multiple foster placements. As an independent social worker she has carried out assessments for prospective foster carers, kinship care (for family members of children who have gone into care), investigations of foster carers, and assessments of special guardians for the courts.
Whilst freelancing, Alison had a successful parenting coaching practice based in Kent; families referred themselves or were sent through schools, health and social care services. Alison provided ‘hands-on’ parenting techniques to parents, including supporting parents to develop and implement behavioural programs (like Supernanny) with children seen as out of control. She also supported parents who had lost confidence in their own abilities and worked with children experiencing emotional challenges.
Alison has also developed bespoke training for fostering organisations and created online training courses for foster carers specialising in children with disabilities, and for foster carers facing allegations.
She has also run parenting classes for mothers experiencing domestic violence; worked in a local authority Children and Families Duty team and worked in fostering agencies. It was during one of Alison’s secondments to a fostering agency in Essex that she first met Angela. Alison is recently married to her long-term partner of twelve years, she has two children aged five and nine.
Dr Jocasta Webb
Jocasta is a BACP accredited psychotherapist with considerable experience of working with children and young people with significant emotional and behavioural difficulties, and in particular children in care. She has worked in several residential schools, alongside carers, parents and social workers, as well as other members of the clinical teams and teachers. Jocasta specialises in working with trauma, specifically around the impact of both homicide and terrorist attacks, with children and adults of all ages. She is an asset to our team and works alongside us to improve outcomes for young people in our care and supporting foster carers where required.
Lonnie is a very experienced Social Worker who has worked with looked after children for over 30 years. A consultant, she has developed and improved care provision in several small to medium sized foster agencies. A keen photographer, she has used her talents to support foster carers to create very personal life stories of children in care, for them to keep and look back in their later life.
Lonnie is part of the senior management team, she is the agency decision maker, and will work independently to make final decisions on foster care applications and assessments. She will have input into quality control of our recruitment and will influence the training and development of both our carers and our staff.