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Our team

We have built a strong team with various diverse skills across new family support and infant feeding, charity and commercial sectors, and various specialist functions to ensure we have the strongest possible foundations for our services.

Our Founders and Management Team

Our founders Jennie, Karen and Laura have worked in infant feeding support in West Kent for a total of over 20 years. We founded Baby Umbrella in 2020 to bring together support for new families across West Kent and create an 'umbrella' of support within the community.

Jennie Yelverton portrait, with rainbow umbrella backdrop

Jennie Yelverton
Education and Practice Lead

Jennie is a qualified Breastfeeding Counsellor and Supervisor. She supports our staff and volunteers to embody our charity values to the best of their ability and leads our staff supervision and support function. Jennie oversees training and education development and delivery for staff, volunteers, parents and professionals; as well as leading on Diversity and Inclusion.

Karen McCully portrait, with rainbow umbrella backdrop

Karen McCully
Clinical, Community and Client Lead

Karen is a qualified Lactation Consultant and is our Clinical Lead, responsible for maintaining our high levels of knowledge and skill in Breastfeeding support. She leads our relationships with governmental and healthcare bodies and is our Designated Safeguarding Lead. She also leads on outreach events and community fundraising as well as being fully embedded in almost all of our face to face groups on a weekly basis.

Laura Shtaingos portrait, with rainbow umbrella backdrop

Laura Shtaingos
Finance, Operations and Marketing Lead

Laura is a qualified Breastfeeding Counsellor and Perinatal Counsellor. She runs our strategic planning, reporting and compliance processes. She is also responsible for creating operational processes that are effective and support our service delivery. As marketing lead, Laura works to ensure our service is known, liked and trusted; by those who need us. As finance lead, Laura has overall responsibility for income generation to support our service.

Our trustees

Since our founding in August 2020, Baby Umbrella has recruited a strong team of trustees with various skills.


We are always looking for new volunteers with diverse points of view to ensure that we reflect the communities we serve - please get in touch if you feel you can help.

Ema Saunders portrait

Ema Saunders


A founding trustee, Ema is a seasoned HR professional and executive coach, having worked at Savills for 14 years. Ema is a trained peer supporter for Baby Umbrella, and has personal experience of the services provided through Baby Cafe after having her son.

Alissa Brumby portrait

Alissa Brumby


A trustee since October 2020, Alissa brings a wealth of experience working in the Third Sector. Having led philanthropy teams to raise funds for many worthy causes, Alissa is passionate about maternal mental wellbeing and hopes to support Baby Umbrella raise vital funds to continue their work. She has also benefitted from Baby Umbrella services herself.

Marissa Conway portrait

Marissa Conway


A trustee since March 2024, Marissa is a feminist activist and charity executive, currently working as the CEO of United Nations Association - UK. Having used the services herself, she strongly believes that all new parents, especially new mothers, deserve the "village" of support that Baby Umbrella provides. Marissa supports with strategic, governance, and fundraising expertise. 

Alison Day portrait

Alison Day


A trustee since October 2020, Alison brings over 10 years of marketing and communications experience to the Baby Umbrella team. Whilst also working as a Peer Supporter, she is passionate about supporting parents on their journey and in particular with their mental health and wellbeing.  

Chloe Gastrell portrait

Chloe Gastrell


In her position as trustee since October 2020, Chloe supports Baby Umbrella with legal and governance advice, having worked as a qualified solicitor specialising in Intellectual Property and Media for over 10 years. She cares deeply about supporting new parents with breastfeeding and their mental health, and has benefitted from the services offered by Baby Umbrella herself.

Catherine Hardwick portrait

Cat Hardwick


Cat is a compliance and governance professional who has gained a wealth of experience in the non profit sector over the last decade. Having experienced first hand the benefits of early support in her own feeding journey with her premature baby, she is passionate to see parents supported early in their journey to feel equipped, empowered and resourced. 

Nicola Kirkwood portrait

Nicola Kirkwood


A founding trustee, Nicola is passionate about maternal mental wellbeing. A qualified doctor, she currently works at Maidstone Hospital as a Consultant Oncologist. Nicola also has personal experience of using the services provided by Baby Cafe Tunbridge Wells, before it became part of Baby Umbrella.

Sarah Martin portrait

Sarah Martin


A trustee since March 2024, Sarah supports us with our diversity, equality, inclusion and belonging strategy. Sarah has worked in people management and development for over 20 years, and now focuses on DEI and wellbeing. and particularly neurodiversity inclusion.  Sarah believes deeply in the positive benefits of of Baby Umbrella's services for new parents, especially regarding mental health and well-being.  

Rebecca O'Dwyer portrait

Rebecca O'Dwyer


As Treasurer trustee since March 2024, Rebecca supports Baby Umbrella with strategy and finance. She has spent the last 12 years working across banking and finance, currently as a Director for a leading Investment Management firm. She is passionate about improving maternal experiences and benefitted from the support of Baby Umbrella after the birth of her son. 

Jaime Phipps portrait

Jaime Phipps


A trustee since March 2024, Jaime is an Advanced Nurse Practitioner within General Practice. She brings clinical and governance expertise to the Baby Umbrella team.  Jaime has a particular interest in maternal mental wellbeing and she has previously been a breastfeeding peer supporter.  Jaime has also benefitted from the services provided by Baby Umbrella herself.

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