I’m Susan Barnes and I’m Astriid’s Corporate Partnerships Manager. I have a wide and varied background of experience which I bring with me. I have been involved with The Worshipful Company of Weavers, a City Livery Company, since 1990 – most recently as Upper Warden in 2019/20. I have served on the Charitable Grants Committee for many years assessing grant applications in and around helping to prevent offending and recidivism; I was also instrumental in setting up a mentoring project within the Company in 2020.

In 1998 I set up and ran my own business – a French cuisine restaurant with B&B in West Sussex. After selling the business, I moved into the Pharmaceutical sales world rising to regional development manager for the South.

More recently I worked as Clerk to Governors at a local school.

I am a qualified swimming and diving coach and I am also a teaching assistant, GDPR, and Safeguarding lead at my local Aikido club.

Following an accident in 2011 resulting in a brain injury, I understand how isolating being out of work can feel. At Astriid I can use my skills and the knowledge I have built up in my career to help our candidates to re-engage and regain a sense of value and worth. There are many opportunities out there – my goal is to find them.

Founded by David Shutts OBE following his cancer diagnosis, Astriid believes that the value of work is far more than the wages paid. Employment provides routine, a sense of normality, challenges and rewards, and when approached correctly, can also facilitate a greater sense of wellbeing. Astriid, a UK charity founded in 2018, helps bridge the gap between the Invisible Talent Pool (people with chronic illnesses who wish to pursue volunteering or employment), and the UK skills crisis. Astriid looks to find meaningful employment for people with long-term health issues and their carers.

Susan Barnes is the Corporate Partnerships Manager for Astriid.