About us

How is HAHAV governed?

HAHAV is a registered charity (Charity Commission No: 1160645) and a limited company (Companies House No: 09261439).

HAHAV is governed by a board of Directors and Trustees who are all unpaid volunteers. Together they are responsible for the strategic direction, regulation, financial probity and future development of the organization.

Our board of trustees

Dr Alan Axford

Alan graduated at University College Hospital London, followed by postgraduate experience in Birmingham and London. He returned to Wales to work at the Medical Research Council Pneumoconiosis Unit at Llandough Hospital, Penarth. In 1975, after 5 years research, he was appointed Consultant Physician in respiratory medicine at Bronglais Hospital, Aberystwyth where he established the Department of Medical Oncology, later becoming lead cancer clinician for the county. Prior to retirement, for 12 years he was Medical Director of BronglaisHospital and was awarded the OBE for services to medicine in Wales in 2006. 

Karen Axford

Karen has enjoyed a career in local government finance as a Senior Accountant and Chief Internal Auditor (London Borough of Bromley; Pontypridd Urban District Council; South Glamorgan County Council; Ceredigion District Council). From 1981- 2015 she established KRAXI, a retail business in Aberystwyth and online, specialising in antiques, quality gifts, homewares, jewellery and accessories. Since 2015, as a volunteer, Karen has established and managed HAHAV’s successful charity shop in Pier Street. 

Sue Balsom

Sue is an Aberystwyth graduate and retired businesswoman with a distinguished record of public service and governance. She founded FBA which for 25 years was Wales’s leading Design, Marketing & Public Affairs company. In public life she has served as a board member of Ofcom, BBC Wales, WDA, Finance Wales; Cambrian Mountains CIC, as well as government task and finish groups. Other leadership roles included Chair of the Prince’s Trust Cymru; Welsh Woman of the Year; UK Cabinet Office Diversity Ambassador and High Sheriff of Dyfed 2017. Sue is dedicated to HAHAV’s success as a pioneer of compassionate palliative care in the community.

Dr Heather Cox

Heather is a local GP partner in Church Surgery, having moved to Aberystwyth with her family in 2005. Prior to this she spent several years working in Nepal where she worked with leprosy affected patients and in a small General Practice Clinic for the poor. It was in Nepal that she undertook a short palliative care course, with the speciality only just starting to be recognised and implemented.  

All Ceredigion GPs are involved in the palliative care of their patients and over the last few years more support has been available from the local Palliative Care Team and HAHAV. Heather is committed to HAHAV and to helping in the charity’s development to further improve palliative care support in Ceredigion. 

Irfana Jones

Irfana worked as Social Worker with Older People in Mid Wales before qualifying and working as a Solicitor and Head of Private Client and Public Guardianship matters in Shropshire.

She was appointed a Non Executive Board Member and later Vice Chair at the Princess Royal Hospital Trust, Telford and was a Board Member and Chair of Age Concern, Shrewsbury for a number of years.Upon retiring and returning to live in Aberystwyth, she joined the Board of Coleg Ceredigion and was a Director of the Royal Welsh Enterprise Company for some years.

Having been born and raised in Pakistan and subsequently living in Penllyn in the early 1960’s, Irfana has a special interest in the effects of public policy on minority communities and language issues.Irfana greatly enjoys being a team member and Director at HAHAV and is inspired by its future plans which she believes will be an invaluable addition to care provision in Ceredigion

Dr Donogh Mckeogh

Donogh grew up in Ireland and graduated from University College Dublin in 1993. He spent 10 years training and working at Oregon Health and Science University, USA where he was an Assistant Professor of Cardiology, before coming with his family to Aberystwyth in 2005. He was the first Cardiologist appointed to Bronglais Hospital where he works full time. He feels strongly that palliative care services should be offered to all patients with life-limiting disease, including cardiovascular disease such as congestive heart failure. 

Branwen Phillips 

Branwen’s professional career began in 1977 as the Bursar at Royal Hollaway, University of London. Subsequently she was employed as Senior Residence Manager at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth with responsibility for students, staff and third-party accommodation. Following retirement in 2015, Branwen worked as a volunteer in both Bronglais Hospital and HAHAV’s shop, becoming shop representative (now Director) on HAHAV’s board. Branwen’s involvement with the charity was prompted by her observation of the lack of support and palliative care on offer whilst caring for her terminally ill mother. 

Peter Skitt

Peter joined the NHS in 1981 and has 40 years experience of varied clinical and non-clinical positions and senior management roles. Currently he is County Director and Commissioner for Ceredigion (Hywel Dda University Health Board) and Programme Director for the Mid Wales Joint Committee area. Peter’s career has involved managing Critical Care and Theatres, General Management in Surgery. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Management and a Member of the Institute of Leadership and Management with a passion for coaching and leadership, being a qualified executive coach. Peter believes strongly in community resilience and is an advocate of empowering local people and giving them a voice. 

Rhian Thomas

Rhian is a retired accountant having spent her career within Local Government in Ceredigion. Following retirement, Rhian volunteered at HAHAV’s retail shop, enthusiastically assisting with retail plus finance and admin tasks for over three years. She enjoys working with a HAHAV’s great team of volunteers and joined the board as a Director of Finance in 2021 at a time of exciting new developments. Rhian hopes her skills will help develop the charity’s vision to benefit service users in Ceredigion.

Prof John Williams 

John is Emeritus Professor of Law at Aberystwyth University. His specialism is older people, human rights, and the law. He has published extensively in leading practitioner and academic journals and has spoken at many national and international conferences. John advised the Health and Social Care Committee and Welsh Government on the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014. He was appointed to the United Nations expert panel on the Rights of Older People. He has given evidence to the Westminster Parliament, the Senedd, and the Northern Ireland Assembly plus advising other statutory and third sector bodies. He is a trustee of several local and national charities. 

Mark Williams

Mark was Ceredigion’s Member of Parliament for 12 years until 2017 and continues to be actively involved in many community organisations across the county. Professionally a teacher, Mark is now a school Headteacher in Powys. He lives in Borth with his wife Helen and their children. Whilst in Parliament, Mark often highlighted the work of carers and the challenge of supporting them and their families, particularly those in scattered rural communities. Mark believes that HAHAV meets an important and growing need across Ceredigion, and responds uniquely to local clients and their carers.

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