Learning Disability Today
Supporting professionals working in learning disability and autism services

Forces Additional Needs and Disability Forum appoints new chair

Stephanie Quintrell has been made the new Chair of the Forces Additional Needs and Disability Forum (FANDF).

FANDF is the tri-service group for serving personnel – Regular or Reserves – and their families who have a child or adult dependent with an additional need or disability.

Stephanie is a soldier’s wife and mum to their six-year-old son who lives with challenging additional needs. She had a successful career in the care sector spanning more than 10 years until she became unwell in 2019.

After a dramatic career change caused by her health deterioration, Stephanie now works as operations manager for the not-for-profit organisation Forces Wives Challenge, which has recently chosen SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity as its charity partner.

FANDF’s mission is to give a voice to Forces families with additional needs and disabilities

A keen horse rider since childhood, Stephanie has competed in various disciplines and continues to ride as a para equestrian.

Stephanie, a FANDF committee member since 2020, said: “I have a true passion and determination in wanting to make a difference to other military families, and having faced a range of challenges with our son over the last few years – such as navigating our way through the EHCP [Education and Health Care Plan] process, pushing through the NHS paediatric diagnosis journey, an unsuitable school placement and of course all the while being a serving military family – I feel I have the lived experience needed to see military life through the eyes of many of FANDF’s members.

“I’m excited to see where the next few years takes us, and I will enjoy throwing myself into my new role with the commitment and enthusiasm I’ve given to the FANDF committee over the last three years.”

FANDF’s mission is to give a voice to Forces families with additional needs and disabilities, to change attitudes towards families with additional needs and disabilities within the Armed Forces, and to ensure policy and decision makers understand the needs of Forces families, who have additional needs and disabilities.

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