Karen Boath appointed SNAP’s CEO
Our Family Services Director, Karen Boath, has been appointed SNAP’s Chief Executive and is determined to continue to provide families with the ‘gold star’ service that SNAP has delivered since the charity first opened its doors in 1994.
Karen, who has worked at the charity for nearly 16 years, says it is vital SNAP is there for families especially as other sources of support have decreased in recent years.
As SNAP continues to grow – it has now helped more than 6,000 families – the main challenge for Karen and her team will be to ensure it continues to keep up with demand.
“We’re proud of the service we offer which gives parents the confidence to know they are supported and enables them to build relationships with other families, reducing isolation,” said Karen.
Karen worked in a mainstream school before joining SNAP in 2006 to support children with a range of additional needs, and quickly expanded her specialist knowledge of ASD, ADHD, physical needs and visual impairments.
Frustrated by the way children with SEN were expected to just fit in to the mainstream school environment and the lack of understanding by others, she was enthused to work in an environment where she could really make a difference, and loved the fact that SNAP made things work for each individual family, offering a bespoke service that was family led.
“When I joined SNAP we had four members of staff working in a couple of tiny rooms in a community hall. In my first week the team began looking at plans for the total renovation of a nearby vacant building. It was very exciting to be a part of the transformation and move to this new custom designed facility. We now have a fantastic purpose-built Centre and offer so much more in the way of services. We’re particularly proud of how we’ve managed to continue to provide services throughout the pandemic through a series of innovative ways of working including using zoom.
“Looking at the numbers of families we support through our Helpline and other services and receiving independent confirmation of the great work we do is a reminder of the difference we can make and I’m determined we will continue to do just that.”
Karen says she intends to continue to be a ‘hands on’ boss working with families on a daily basis to best understand how SNAP can help them.
“It makes me frustrated when there is injustice. I see how hard our families have to fight daily and I want to make sure that we do all we can to help them in any way possible,” she said.
Speaking on behalf of SNAP’s board of Trustees Chair, Mandy Carr, said: “We are excited to see Karen take the helm at SNAP as Karen’s considerable experience of SNAP’s services, internal/external relationships and industry expertise will ensure that we continue to deliver what our families need. As part of SNAP’s continuing evolution we are well placed to meet our future growth and development aspirations as the charity heads towards its 30th Anniversary in 2024 and beyond.”
Karen takes over her new role today – 1st November – as one of several key changes to the senior management SNAP Team, which will also see the arrival of a new Finance Director in February 2022. This position will help to ensure that SNAP continues to maintain its high standards of financial management.