Founder and Chief Executive
Belinda trained as a vet and worked in London, becoming a founding partner of a veterinary practice in Battersea. Life experiences and her time in practice stimulated her interest in the relationship between people and their pets – the mutual benefits these relationships offer and the impact of losing them. Moving to Suffolk, she developed her person-centred approach and trained in bereavement support and counselling. She now lectures veterinary and animal welfare staff on how to help people cope with companion animal end of life decisions and loss.
She saw the need for a charity which would promote and enhance the bond between people and their animals, providing support to enable these relationships to continue through difficult times, whilst empowering and supporting difficult decisions and loss. Our Special Friends was born! Today Belinda is our Chief Executive. She is also our main practitioner, visiting potential users of the services we offer, assessing their needs and matching them to appropriate support from our volunteers and affiliate organisations. She believes firmly that people need pets and pets need people because they both benefit from being together - but they need to be a good match and, when necessary, to be supported by others to maintain the relationship.