CHAS Appoints Chair of the Board

21st April

Today, Children’s Hospices Across Scotland – better known as CHAS, has officially announced Peta Hay as the next Chair of the CHAS Board.

Fife-based Peta is a highly experienced business leader and is deeply committed to CHAS’s ambition having served on the Board for nearly four years. As Chair, Peta will provide clear guidance and direction to the CHAS Board and its committees; bringing an impressive career in retail and leadership development to the fore.

Peta will take up the post when the current Chair, George Reid retires in September after serving 12 years as a trustee of the charity and four years as Chair.

Speaking of her appointment, Peta said: “It is an incredible honour and privilege to have been chosen as the Chair of Trustees for CHAS. Put simply, CHAS is an amazing organisation with a team who are passionate about what they do and the support they give. The ambition to support every family in Scotland that is living with the devastating knowledge that their child is dying is at the heart of everything we do and since joining CHAS as a trustee almost four years ago, I have seen first-hand the difference the charity makes to children and their families through the provision of emotional, practical and medical support.

As a mother of two teenage children, I cannot begin to comprehend the heartbreak that some families experience and how desperately difficult it must be for them. CHAS is a charity that understands heartbreak and through the provision of integrated palliative and end of life care and respite we are able to provide support, compassion and care to children and families in really tough days, at end of life and after a child dies. As Chair of CHAS I am looking forward to working with Rami and the Board to realise CHAS’s ambition of being there for every family that needs our support and to help to keep the joy alive, even in the face of death.”

Simultaneously, CHAS announced that Dr Eddie Doyle has been appointed Vice Chair of the Board. Serving on the Board since 2017, Dr Doyle has been a consultant paediatric anaesthetist at the Royal Hospital for Sick Children in Edinburgh since 1996 and is currently the Associate Medical Director for Women’s and Children’s Services in NHS Lothian. On his appointment, Eddie said, “Across Scotland, CHAS is the most vital source of support and care for families who are living with a child (or children) with life-limiting conditions. I am deeply honoured to have been appointed Vice Chair of CHAS and to be part of the ambition to bring medical expertise and unparalleled compassion to families facing the most desperate of situations.”

Chief Executive Rami Okasha expressed his delight at the appointments and stated “I am absolutely delighted to welcome Peta as our new Chair. Peta has a deep commitment to CHAS and a wealth of experience at a senior level working across Scotland and beyond. We are looking forward to benefitting from her knowledge and her passion for making a difference to the lives of children and families going through the hardest of times. Eddie will be a great vice chair and help make sure our care is delivered seamlessly with the NHS and local authorities. I’d like to thank George Reid for his wonderful service to CHAS over the last 12 years, and especially the last months when he has been of incredible support to me in leading the charity through the pandemic.”

George Reid, current Chair of the Board, endorsed the comments of his colleagues and stated: “I am proud of my time on the CHAS Board and delighted to be handing over the Chair role to Peta, with Eddie as Vice Chair. Both Peta and Eddie are long standing Trustees with impeccable credentials to lead the CHAS Board and work together with Rami and his Executive team to deliver the next stages of CHAS’s development. After over 12 years as a Trustee, I feel lucky to have played a part in supporting such a wonderful organisation that provides so much vital support to children and families going through the toughest of times. It has been a privilege to serve on the CHAS Board, and I will continue to support CHAS and its work in the years ahead.”

CHAS is dedicated reaching more of the 16,700 children and young people in Scotland who have a life-shortening condition. Currently the children’s hospice charity delivers integrated care across a variety of settings: in their two hospices, in hospital, at home and – since the pandemic started – virtually. In March 2020, CHAS launched the world’s first virtual children’s hospice and is continuing to prioritise end-of-life and emergency care in hospice and children’s homes as well as supporting the NHS and Scottish Government in their national effort.

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