Emma Pearson


Co-Founder & Chair

I am chair and co-founder of JOEL. The charity was founded in 2012 after the birth of our eldest rainbow Sebastian, where we found very little support for pregnancy and parenting after loss and now we feel passionate about offering support to other families.

Being part of JOEL makes me feel very proud. We have achieved so much over the last few years and I feel very fortunate to have met many inspiring and brave families along the way.

JOEL is a combination of the names Noel and James, our twin boys who were born still in 2011, brothers to their younger rainbow siblings Sebastian and Polly.







Claire Gresham



I first met Emma and Matt at our local Sands group in 2011 after my daughter, Erin was stillborn at 40 weeks + 10. I attended our local Sands group whilst pregnant with my first rainbow, Noah, as I was in need of the support during this time. Emma and I became a great peer support for each other during our rainbow pregnancies.

Our experiences highlighted the lack of help for families expecting and parenting rainbows. I joined the committee and became charity Secretary in 2013.

I am incredibly honoured and proud to be part of JOEL and how we have grown over the last three years. To see the difference we make to families during some of their most difficult times, through the support we offer is my key motivation to be a part of JOEL and all that it can be in the future. I have 2 wonderful rainbows, Noah 5 and Olly 2.








Sarah Lish



Chasing Rainbow & Employee Pack Co-ordinator

Hi, I’m Sarah. I only discovered about JOEL after suffering my own loss of a baby. What I found the most shocking after my loss is that no one talks about it and there are plenty of help and support in place but we have to find it for ourselves. This shouldn't be the case.

JOEL has allowed me to be part of a community who are dedicated to helping others so that you are never alone.

I am now blessed with my Rainbow Baby Ida, and the JOEL community have provided me with so much support I can't put it into words. We all share our worries and our excitement and we can do this without feeling judged - it's completely safe. This is the reason I was so desperate to be a part of it. We have so much passion and motivation to make JOEL work that I think we all buzz from it and I hope you can see that. We have so many plans for the future and it's so special to be even just a small part of it.








Tracey Vahey


Activities Co-ordinator

Hi, my name is Tracey and I am mother to 3 sons and 1 daughter. Ryan was born in 1991, twin boys Dean and Luke were born prematurely at 25 weeks in 1993, Dean lived for 3 days and Luke for 3 weeks. Our rainbow daughter, Jade, was born in 1994. After meeting JOEL in September 2016 at a gala, we as a family decided to support families like us.








Sybil Fielding



& Charity Sector

As a 62-year-old mother of 3 can truthfully say that I have some experience in life. Originally, I trained in catering and home economics and worked as a chef in one of the oldest schools in the country.

Much of my life has been spent working with of for young people, I trained in early years and pre-school education engages with many Play Groups and other early years groups. My experience working as an adult leader in the scout movement is considerable and spans 25 years.

Since 2005 it has been my privilege to serve as an elected member of the County Council and more recent times as a district councillor for Worksop North West. Uniquely I have held the civic office of Chairman for both Councils. These functions have brought me into contact with many voluntary organisations and ever inspired by how much is done by so many people in our community.

I am proud to be a member of Worksop Royal British Legion and Worksop Lions. My time management has always been a real challenge! Joël has always been close to my heart and seen the organisation grow from humble beginnings. I have been there got the tea shirt. Losing a child at any time is a terrible experience that remains with you always. Joel is making a real difference I will be doing my very best to support a very special organisation.








Matthew Pearson



Standards & Quality

Daddy to angels Noel and James, and rainbows Sebastian and Polly.

As a bereaved father, I know first-hand how devastating baby loss is.

Providing appropriate support and care to all families at this devastating time is so crucial, therefore I am passionate and dedicated to ensure that this is offered and delivered to all families locally and throughout the UK.







Karen Barker



Hi, I’m Karen and I was first appointed treasurer in January 2017. I am an Angel Nan and became very aware of JOEL thrugh my daughter, Sarah, who gave birth to Erin, who was stillborn in March 2016.

No one can appreciate the devastation the death of a baby causes to the parents, family, extended family and friends unless you have been touched by it yourself. Sarah became pregnant with her rainbow quite quickly and awesome Ida was born in January 2017 after a very worrying time.

We soon realised the lack of support there is for following pregnancies and in fact life after loss. But JOEL does just that and I am very proud to be part of the family/community who provide so much support and friendship and all the amazing, dedicated people who make JOEL what it is.








Allison Palmer


Strategy & Communication

Although I have only recently become an 'official' member of the JOEL committee, I have been an avid supporter of the charity for many years after meeting Emma and her dad Ian Pickersgill back in 2013, as they were setting up the charity. I was blown away by their passion and commitment for supporting others, following their own loss.

As well as having a personal interest in the work that the charity does, I am confident that I can offer lots of strategic support to help give them a clear future vision for the direction of the charity. JOEL has grown tremendously in such a short time and it is time to develop a clear strategic plan as they go from strength to strength. My current role as Partnership Officer at Bassetlaw Community & Voluntary Service (BCVS) will allow me to ensure that JOEL is able to access the support which it will need to remain a sustainable charity to support people not only in Bassetlaw and the UK, but potentially worldwide.

As well as being hands on with all aspects of the charity, I also bring a wealth of knowledge and life experience to JOEL, having been a Family Liaison Officer for over 10 years, trained in face to face bereavement support, whilst in the civil service for over 20 years. I am also a trained Bereavement Counsellor having received extensive training from Cruise & Bassetlaw Bereavement Care so I am adequately equipped to understand the effects of loss on families and the community as a whole having supported many families through their loss of a loved one.

I am really excited and inspired by 'Team JOEL' and the positivity which radiates through each and everyone associated with the charity and if I can be part of such a fabulous team then I look forward to being part of that dynamic.








Claire Larkin-Brown


Family Support Pack Liaison & Volunteer Co-ordinator

My name is Claire, and I am proud mummy to my sunshine Tobias and my angel Joseph. Joseph was born sleeping in December 2016, and it was here that JOEL began their support. From gentle messages of support, to family packs and counselling, Team JOEL have helped with light in our journey every step of the way. I want to be able to pay back all of the kindness I have received from the whole team, and in turn hope that my experience can to help others in what are the darkest of days. I’m hoping my experience in my work profession of account management can lend itself to Team JOEL, and my driven personality will get the results needed from me.








Sarah Godfrey


Fundraising & Marketing

I have been aware of JOEL as a charity for a number for a number of years but have become more interested since getting to know Emma and learning more about the amazing work that they do. As a Mum, I understand the desire to have a family and have experienced first-hand how devastating it can be when this doesn’t go to plan.

I am passionate about fundraising and am keen to work with JOEL to extend their donor reach so that more support can be offered to families who need it. My role in a Sales and Marketing team means I can bring a wealth of experience that will help JOEL to extend out to a wider audience and offer support beyond the local area. I am really excited to work with JOEL and to use my skills to help them grow moving forwards.



Registered Charity No: 1158908

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