Our Team

All operational employees or associates working with or on behalf of Live Well North East hold an Enhanced Disclosure and are trained in Safeguarding, Equality and Prevent.

Live Well North East CIC has a board of ten directors. They all share our company’s vision and have complementing skills and experience to ensure long term success.



Debra Forth, Executive Director

With a strong background in support and development working with children and young people, Debra has experienced roles as a Higher Level Teaching Assistant (HLTA) and a Primary Physical Education Specialist with over ten years’ experience of teaching, planning and delivering the curriculum and supporting wellbeing of children up to the age of 18.

Debra has a passion for supporting children with special educational needs and during the 10 years employed for Durham County Council she demonstrated her continued professional development through a range of courses relating to supporting children with Downs Syndrome and ADHD, as well as courses that address safeguarding and child protection requirements.

Debra has been successfully self-employed for 6 years. She established the business ‘Relax Kids Durham’ after becoming a Relax Kids Coach, supporting the emotional wellbeing of all ages. Debra’s passion for wellbeing and self-development is also demonstrated through her additional self-employment activity running ‘Go Forth Fitness and Wellbeing’ fitness classes in the community for two years.

Debra brings experience in fundraising (having raised over £6000 for a variety of charities in recent years) Furthermore she has excellent marketing and social media skills which have been developed over the years of being self-employed.   

Debra holds a BA (Hons) in Education Studies as well as a Level 3 qualification in Elkan Speech and Language and is currently studying Makaton. Debra is trained in Youth Mental Health First Aid. Debra’s voluntary roles included sitting on the board of trustees for Sacriston Youth Project and is currently on the Board of Trustees for County Durham Sport.

Emma Pattison, Executive Director

Emma has worked with children and young people for over 10 years in the statutory, private and voluntary sectors, with a particular interest in child psychology. After graduating with a Psychology degree, and initially working in schools and nurseries as a classroom assistant, she subsequently became an Ofsted Registered Childminder working with children aged 6 months to 11 years, being successfully self-employed for over 10 years. During this time Emma has completed a vast number of training courses including Safeguarding, Paediatric First Aid, Communication and Language when working with children. 

Emma became qualified as a Relax Kids Coach early 2018 and has been delivering emotional wellbeing programmes with children aged 2-18 years, as well as with adults. Emma has experience of wellbeing coaching and mentoring with adults and has a passion for sharing her knowledge around good mental wellbeing. Emma is also qualified to deliver exercise fitness classes, including Boxercise and Rock Box.

Emma is proficient with the skills of book keeping, managing business finances and strategic development, as well as being attentive to customer service.  “I have the drive and determination to ensure that any plans are seen through to completion in the most effective and efficient manner whilst always focusing on maintaining the ethos and commitments of the organisation as a whole”.

Emma holds a BA (Hons) in Psychology, Level 2 ‘Understanding Autism’, and is currently studying towards a SEND Diploma, Child Psychology Diploma, Mindfulness Diploma and Health and Wellbeing Diploma. Emma is a Qualified Mental Health First Aider as well as Youth Mental Health First Aid Champion.

Emma is mum to 3 children, loves music and hates salad!

Emma Bailey – Director

Coming soon

Alan Balmer – Director

I have spent some 40 years in industry, where I was Director and General Manager, before I retired to set up my own business as a Coach and Mentor to SME’s in the North East. Presently I focus on volunteering with the Princes Trust and Sported where I help young people set up their business and mentor  them once they are up and running. Also helping organisations reach their potential. I am delighted to have been invited to chair the board at Live Well NE and continue to support their development.

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Live Well Team

With fantastic skills and experience to bring to the team, Mel is highly organised, personable and diligent in her work.

Mel joined the British Army upon leaving school, bravely operating in Bosnia, Kosovo and Cyprus. Taking retirement from the army to start a family, Mel has since worked as an Assistant Manager and Admin Officer in the Civil Service, developing her skills and thoroughly enjoying her work.

Mel is utilising her skills as Live Well North East’s Office Manager.

Mel has a passion for fitness, particularly Boxing, and is a qualified Level 1 England Boxing Coach. She is keen to share her passion with others. Currently volunteering at a local Boxing Club, Mel is already inspiring young people to be active and achieve their potential.

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Our Funders

We are grateful to be supported in our work by various funders including:

  • The National Lottery Community  Fund
  • BBC Children In Need
  • The Happiness Hub – PCP 
  • County Durham Community Foundation
  • Chester-le-Street District Area Action Partnership
  • Sport England
  • The Hospital of God

Funding supports the various projects and ongoing work at Live Well North East to help us best meet demand and need in our community.

Take a look at our upcoming events or get in touch if you have any questions or need any more information

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