The Blue Building

Our organisation and structure

We’re an independent organisation set up to deliver social care and support services to children, young people and families in Doncaster.

We have been set up as an innovative way to provide these services following an agreement with national government and the local authority - Doncaster Council. We are the first of our kind in the country.

We believe that every child and young person in the borough deserves the best start in life and support when they need it to reach their full potential. We will support vulnerable children and young people of all backgrounds, races, disabilities, and cultures in the borough who need our help at times of need or crisis in their lives.

We came into operation on the 1 October 2014 and our work is led by a Chief Executive and a board of local and professional people with expertise within and outside of the borough.

How we give you our guarantee of quality? 

All our social workers and their managers are qualified social workers who are registered with the Health and Care Professional Council. They have to undergo specialists tests every year to check the quality of their practice. All our staff, including social workers and other practitioners, have intensive training and support.

Our services are inspected by Ofsted, including our children's homes. Our other services can be inspected about the general quality of our work, or about particular areas of practice. 

We report every six months to the Secretary of State for Education about the quality of our practice. 

We have an independent board who oversee our work, and we also report our performance to Doncaster Council who are our local comissioners. 


About our Trust Board

Tony Hunter, Chair

Tony has been Chief Executive of the Social Care Institute for Excellence since January 2014, and is a former president of the Association of Directors of Social Services. Educated at Doncaster Grammar School, Oxford University and (for his social work qualification) Nottingham University, Tony has council experience as a frontline social worker, senior hospital social worker, training manager and manager of day and domiciliary services, as well as four years as Barnardo’s Principal Policy and Development Officer.

In the early 90s Tony worked for Price Waterhouse Coopers on a range of health and social care projects before joining East Riding of Yorkshire Council as its Director of Social Services, Housing and Public Protection. As Liverpool City Council’s director from 2003, Tony led the social care improvement agenda, before becoming Chief Executive of North East Lincolnshire Council in 2008.

Tony was awarded the OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List in 2010, for services to social care.

Paul Moffat, Chief Executive

Paul has previously held a number of senior management posts including Director of Children’s Services and Director of Family Services in Northumberland.

Paul has over 20 years’ experience with a number of councils in the North East and has worked for the Health Authority as an Occupational Therapist in a range of acute psychiatric services. He has also worked for the NSPCC and other voluntary organisations.

Shelley Thornton, Non-executive Director

Shelley is a Chartered Public Finance Accountant, a graduate in economics and social policy and a Fellow of the Institute of Consultants. She chairs the Trust’s finance and infrastructure committee, and its Audit & Risk Assurance Committee.

She has over 25 years’ experience in management consultancy, interim management, auditing, policy-making and both executive and non-executive experience, gained in the public, not-for-profit, and private sectors in the UK and overseas.

She is a director of her own consultancy company and has previously held senior positions with Zurich Financial Services, the Audit Commission and the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA). She is also a non-executive director of Cornwall Housing Ltd, where she chairs the Audit Committee, and is a Trustee of a Surf Life Saving Club. In the past she has been an independent member of a local authority standards committee and was a non-executive of the charity Scope where she chaired the Audit Committee. Shelley hails from Doncaster and has family connections around the town.

Rukhsana Yaqoob, Non-executive Director

Rukhsana is an independent educational consultant and the President of the Muslim Teachers' Association. She has been deputy head teacher and is a school governor having taught in four east London schools. She was a mentor for the Black Professionals Network and the Managing Director for the Kiran Project which runs a refuge for abused women and their children.

Rukhsana is a tutor on the Investing in Diversity programme at the Institute of Education and a Board member of the European Initiative for Muslim Social Cohesion. She has previously worked as a regional advisor for National Strategies, one of the most ambitious change management programmes in education, and also contributed to programmes aimed at raising the attainment of vulnerable children and those from ethnic minorities in the UK.

Dr Rupert Suckling, Non-executive Director

Rupert is Doncaster’s Director of Public Health. He is a qualified medical doctor who trained in general medicine and psychiatry before public health medicine.

Rupert has experience in management, team building and network creation. He has gained national recognition for his public health work in Doncaster, including on implementing the Doncaster Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) programme. The programme offers interventions approved by the National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) for treating people with depression and anxiety disorders.

Rupert also led the ‘3 week cough’ programme that used social marketing techniques to improve the earlier diagnosis of lung cancer. More recently he leads the Well Doncaster programme part of Well North.

Previously he has been a consultant in public health and was the lead clinician for the North Trent Cancer Network. He is also a trustee of Club Doncaster Foundation.

Jackie Pederson, Non-Executive Director

Jackie Pederson is the Chief Officer at the NHS Doncaster Clinical Commissioning Group (DCCG) which commissions the majority of health care for the borough including acute hospital, mental health and community services. Her role is to ensure the funding allocated by the Department of Health is used to deliver effective and safe healthcare in line with patients’ needs and expectations.

She has worked in the NHS since 1994 and has held a number of roles across Yorkshire and Nottinghamshire although she has predominantly focussed her career on improving services in Doncaster. Jackie’s experience and knowledge covers a range of disciplines including commissioning services across whole systems, service transformation and primary care.

Before taking on the role of Chief Officer, Jackie was the Chief of Strategy and Delivery at the DCCG and she completed her Masters in Business and Administration in 2007.

Jackie was born in Doncaster and still lives here. She is passionate about improving public services and working in partnership to achieve the maximum impact with the resources available to Doncaster people.

Riana Nelson, Non-Executive Director

Riana Nelson, Assistant Director for Partnerships and Operations in the Learning and Opportunities Directorate of Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council has over 20 years of experience in the public sector. She is an active contributor to the setup of the Expect Youth and secured the upfront investment for this initiative. Highlights of her career include the management of a multi-disciplinary Substance Misuse Service for young people, the set-up of a mental health service for looked after children and most recently the transformation of children centres into Family Hubs, Early Help. She is currently leading on major transformation programmes, for example, the Inclusion Programme in education. She is passionate about families and communities, creating opportunities to improve outcomes and life chances for all.

Ben Brown, Staff Director

Ben Brown is the Training and Development Manager for Doncaster Safeguarding Children Board. Prior to this he worked as a Team Manager in both Child Protection and Youth Offending Services. Ben has worked for Social Care since 1991 and has worked in a range of different roles including Children’s Residential Homes, 'Edge of Care'; Fostering and as a Children’s Social Worker. Ben is also a Trade Union representative.

Louise Wright, Staff Director

Louise Wright is one of the Team Manager for the Referral and Response Team within Doncaster Children's Services Trust, which forms part of the Multi-Agency Access Point (M.A.A.P). She is extremely passionate about supporting children and their families and proud to be part of Doncaster Children's Services Trust, offering an innovative approach to promoting positive changes.

Louise joined Children's Services as a Qualified Social Worker in 2005 and has worked across Nottinghamshire, Norwich and Doncaster. Her experience has included working directly with children and families and also managing social workers in order to support them to achieve the best outcomes for children.

She has always been passionate about children being able to reach their potential and prior to coming to Doncaster in 2015, spent some time in Ghana, West Africa supporting families and communities to gain access to clean water and medical treatment.

During her time with the Trust, Louise has won the staff 'Star Award' for her work to 'Change People's Lives'. She continues to strive to keep the children of Doncaster at the heart of everything we do.

Steve James, Staff Director

Steve James has worked within Children Services since 2002. He is currently the Court Liaison Officer and Youth Justice Worker based within the Youth Offending Service. Prior to this, he worked as a team manager in the Court and Case Management team and I’ve previously worked in a variety of roles within Children’s Residential Care Homes.

During his time as a Team Manager, he has worked as part of the team which implemented improvement plans for the service and supported his team through this process.  As a result of this work, the service is now rated in the top ten Youth Offending Services in the country, something he is very proud of.

He lives the Trust Values of being excellent, being respectful and making a difference through his day-to-day work, to help ensure all children and young people of Doncaster are safe and reach their full potential.


The Trust Structure 

You can view the Trust Structure by downloading the PDF below. 


“I wanted to acknowledge the significant improvements made in the past year. The turnaround has been remarkable.”

Head of service from the NHS

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