Meet the Team
Daniel SingletonNational Executive Director
Daniel Singleton has been the National Executive Director of FaithAction since 2007. In this role Daniel has become influential in a number of government departments, highlighting the significant part that faith-based organisations are playing in communities around the UK. Daniel also meets regularly with FaithAction member organisations to help them move forward and develop in their delivery.
Daniel is a gifted speaker and has addressed a number of large conferences, in particular on how community groups can engage with government, the role of faith in local services, and how to engage the community in local action.
Before his work with FaithAction, Daniel worked as a history teacher in an east London secondary school and later as Training and Development manager for a large voluntary sector organisation in east London. Daniel is also chair of governors for a number of schools, and is Principal of an alternative school run by LifeLine Community Projects, FaithAction’s host organisation in Barking and Dagenham.
Rodie GarlandPolicy Adviser
Rodie is FaithAction’s Policy Advisor. She leads on parts of FaithAction’s programme of work for the Department of Health, Public Health England and NHS England – especially on our Faith and Public Health research and on Friendly Places. She also works on our FaithLab initiative to collect evidence of good and innovative practice from faith groups in addressing social problems.
Previously, Rodie worked as a researcher on education and social policy, and she holds a Master’s degree in Policy Studies in Education. Before this, she studied Russian and worked as a translator. She enjoys ‘entertaining’ the neighbours with her trombone playing.
Jeremy SimmonsPolicy & Programme Officer
Hi! My role is Policy and Programme Officer. So I’ll be working with Rodie, mainly on Department of Health work for the Health and Wellbeing Alliance. I’ll also be getting involved in All-Party Parliamentary Group on Faith and Society's work, like our forthcoming loneliness project.
I joined FaithAction because it felt like the right time to pursue something different. I enjoy researching and writing, so I’ll get to do more of that here.
A big bonus to working here is a five-minute commute (hehe!), as well as working in this team of wonderful people and getting involved at a time when FaithAction’s influence is expanding. The idea of being involved in thinking about and shaping policy is exciting.
Dr Anne SmithCreative English Lead Trainer
Dr Anne Smith is the Lead Trainer and Founder of the Creative English programme. In this role, she writes session plans and materials, trains facilitators and supports those delivering Creative English. She is responsible for developments of the Creative English programme, including variations to support Health Professionals and Creative English: Family Learning.
Anne created the Creative English programme after seven years of research with refugees and migrants, exploring how approaches to drama-based learning could build community and increase participants’ sense of belonging. This resulted in her being awarded a PhD from Queen Mary, University of London in 2013. She has more than twenty years of experience in the formal and informal education sector, as a teacher and workshop facilitator in schools, universities and community settings. She has presented at conferences nationally and internationally on facilitating belonging. Recent conferences include University of Manchester, University of Cork and New York University. She has published extensively on facilitation techniques, language education and building community. Some of her publications can be accessed via this website. As a researcher, she is passionate about identifying and disseminating good practice.
Martin SmithCreative English Senior Hub Co-ordinator
Martin has worked for FaithAction and its parent organisation Lifeline Projects for over 5 years and has held numerous roles, including Project Manager, Project Delivery Officer and Data and Technical Support Officer. His background is IT Management, holding an MCSE, ITIL foundation cert and Prince 2 project management qualifications.
Martin currently works part-time as a professional photographer, specialising in all types of people photography (especially weddings and portraits).
He has previously spent 4 years working in Mozambique as an aide development worker and speaks Portuguese.
Other interesting notes are that he is a qualified drone operator and aerial photographer, loves fishing, golf and generally collecting hobbies!
Jessica AddoCreative English Hub Co-ordinator
Hi! I’ll be working alongside Anne and Martin on the Creative English programme. I’m very excited to be working at FaithAction. As a Christian, I have always wanted to work with a faith-based organisation and promote the perspective of different faiths through the work I do. I have a heart for the community and love engaging with people. Working with FaithAction enables me to marry my love for people with my interest in public health, mental health and health policy. Previously, I’ve worked with refugees and migrants, teaching basic English in a community setting. I truly enjoyed this experience and it motivated me to get in to this role. Other than people and health, I also love baking, graphic design, music and singing – so you might hear me singing, humming or whistling around the office. I am looking forward to getting to know everyone and contributing to the awesome work that Creative English and FaithAction does.
Lydia MartinCreative English Trainer & Connected Communities Officer
Hi! My name is Lydia. I have two ‘hats’ at FaithAction. One is working part-time as a Creative English trainer, mainly with our hubs around London. The other is Connected Communities Officer on an English language project with tenants and young people living in Barking and Dagenham.
I have been working in and with communities for nearly 20 years (I can’t believe it’s that long!) in the UK and abroad. I have run community arts projects as well as community engagement and development with ethnic minority communities.
I think working in a fun and creative way is the most amazing way to learn English, make friends and feel part of your community. I’ve worked on projects which did this and it’s so rewarding to be part of. Hopefully you guys are proud of the work you’re doing to help other people in this way.
What else can I tell you about myself? I’ve spent many years living abroad – mainly in different African countries. I love travelling, drawing and art generally, the cinema and reading. I love meeting new people especially if we can get to know each other over food. I will never say no if someone offers me something to eat!
I’m really excited to be part of the Creative English team and look forward to meeting you in the near future.
Catriona MartinCreative English Trainer
Hi! My name is Catriona (pronounced Catrina) and I am excited to be joining FaithAction as a Creative English Trainer; delivering Creative English sessions locally and training others to deliver Creative English in hubs across the country. I perused this role because I really enjoy working with people and bringing about positive change in communities, so I am looking forward to being able to do that as part of FaithAction. I am really looking forward to meeting and working with others across the country who are all helping to make a tangible difference to people’s lives in their local communities.
Bethan IllmanCreative English Trainer
Hi, my new role at FaithAction is Creative English Trainer. I got involved with the project because the Creative English programme seemed like the perfect balance between things I’ve been doing previously and things I have wanted to be involved with, wrapped up in one. I am excited to be part of FaithAction for so many reasons. Most of all, I’m looking forward to seeing how volunteers and learners progress and build connections over time!
Heather RatnarajahTeam Coordinator
Heather Ratnarajah is Team Coordinator for the whole team at FaithAction. She ensures good communication and understanding amongst the various sub-teams regarding current workload and availability. She acts as administrative support for all ongoing projects, with particular focus on the Creative English programme. She also acts as support and a point of connection for the numerous Creative English hubs across the UK, ensuring they have everything they require to run classes effectively. She is part of the team acting as Secretariat to the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Faith and Society and enjoys the work they do organising important meetings and events at Westminster.
Heather is also a professionally trained opera singer and has enjoyed a career singing with the Scottish national opera company, among others. She still sings professionally and can be heard at friends’ weddings and parties across the UK.
Jenny HadgraftProject Administrator
Before having three daughters, Jenny worked for a health insurance company. A stay-at-home mum until 2013, she went back to college and completed a degree. Afterwards, she began volunteering with the National Autistic Society, which lead to a temporary position within the Care and Support Alliance as a policy and campaigns assistant. Finally, she joined the administration team here at FaithActon.
Georgia AdkinsProject Administrator
Georgia is a Project Administrator for FaithAction. A member of Lifeline Church, Georgia started off as a summer intern for FaithAction, which then, to her surprise, turned itself into a full job. Prior to this, she was fulfilling her passion for history as a first year student, studying History and Politics at the University of Greenwich. Her love for history can be seen throughout her volunteering work for the Holocaust Educational Trust, where she has been a guest speaker in City Hall, the Home Office and the Houses of Parliament. Besides history, Georgia loves music, dogs, spending time with her best friends, cars and, of course, food.