Jo Parsons – Clinical Lead, Paediatric Physiotherapist

Jo Parsons has been the clinical lead at Heel and Toe since November 2016 and heads up the whole clinical team.  She graduated from Northumbria university in 2002, and has many years specialist paediatric training. She is passionate about helping children achieve the goals and loves to celebrate even the smallest step towards those goals.  She is particularly interested in hippotherapy – a therapy that uses the movement of a horse to achieve physiotherapy goals. She is a member of the association of Paediatric Chartered Physiotherapists (APCP), and the Northern Region Paediatric Special Interest Group (NRPSIG), as well as the chartered Physiotherapists in Therapeutic riding and Hippotherapy (CPTRH). She is also HCPC registered and a member of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapists (CSP).

‘I love working at Heel and Toe Children’s charity where every child has the opportunity for fulfil their potential using a range of therapies. It is incredibly rewarding to see children make the progress they never thought possible.’

Amy Cullen – Aquatic Lead, Physiotherapist

Amy graduated from York St John University in 2012. She volunteered at a special needs school in Kenya after university and this made her want to work with children and young people.  Amy has lots of experience working at a special school with children who have a range of disabilities. Amy is our Aquatic Lead. She will be coordinating all hydrotherapy and pool activities. She is a Member of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapists and Aquatic Therapy Association of Chartered Physiotherapists.

Amy loves being a physiotherapist and working for Heel and Toe as she is passionate about giving children and young people opportunities to be as independent as possible however that may be. She loves hydrotherapy as it allows so much freedom of movement, relaxation and fun.

Rob De Giovanni – Paediatric Physiotherapist

Rob graduated from Northumbria University with a BSc Honours degree in Physiotherapy in 2014. He has worked across a wide variety of physio disciplines with specialist experience in paediatrics. Prior to starting with Heel and Toe Rob was working at the Great North Children’s Hospital and the Freeman Hospital on the Paediatric Cardiac Unit. Rob was involved in the care of acutely unwell children providing specialised respiratory care, developmental input and intense neuro-rehab including hydrotherapy, for children with a variety of medical and respiratory conditions. During that time he developed specialist skills within the paediatric setting around neuro-rehab and treating children with complex conditions and health needs.

“Working at Heel and Toe is a great experience, where you can see that every team member is truly invested in helping families and children achieve their goals. I find it so rewarding being able to help children make small steps towards big achievements and here at Heel and Toe it allows me to be part of that.

Caroline Clay - Occupational Therapist

Caroline Clay – Occupational Therapist

Caroline Clay is an Occupational Therapist with over 35 years’ experience of working with children and adults. She specialises in sensory processing difficulties and uses innovative, creative and playful approaches to involve children and parents in OT sessions.

Occupational Therapy is about purposeful “Occupation” – in other words “what we do”

Children learn through playing and doing, so her sessions are both “Fun and Functional”

Caroline is trained in Sensory Integration and is a lead trainer in the Developmental Play approach. She spends her free time travelling, working and supporting children and families in India and Asia as a Consultant OT, and has a well stamped passport.

Caroline has lived in Durham for 30 years and doesn’t intend to move!

Rachel Farley – Speech & Language Therapist (SALT)

Rachel qualified as a speech and language therapist from Newcastle University in 1996. She worked for the NHS in London and then in Durham, supporting children with speech, language and communication needs in schools for 10 years.  She then set up an independent practice working in schools as a speech and language therapist around the North East.  Rachel is passionate about working with children to support their play, interaction and communication development.  She is very excited to now work with the families and other therapists at the Heel and Toe Charity.

Rachel is a member of the Royal College of Speech and Language, Association of Speech and Language therapists in Independent Practice and HCPC (Health and Care Professions Council)

Rachel lives with her husband, two children and 11 rescue guinea pigs, so you can imagine what she spends most of her spare time doing!

Sarah McGuinness – Speech & Language Therapist (SALT)

Sarah qualified with a post grad degree in 1999 and has worked her whole career in paediatric speech and Language in County Durham. She has worked in community clinics, specialist enhanced mainstream provision for SLT and schools with children and young adults aged 2 – 19 years. She has a special interest in speech and all the many sounds that we make!  Sarah will be joining our team to be involved in providing services to schools, as well as to see clients at our Pelton Centre.

She lives in Durham with her husband and 3 children.  When she is not cheering her children on in football or dancing, she loves the fresh air of the Northumberland coast and the ice cream!