Management Team and Committee Members

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Chris Parapia


Before working at ASAS I was a qualified social worker and continued in this field for 37 years with the disabilities team within Leeds City Council.

I have been on the committee since ASAS started and was instrumental in setting it up. This was after realising that there was very little appropriate provision for children with additional needs in the area that was fun and safe. I have been proud to see ASAS expand over the years into the organisation it is today and of the commitment of all our staff and volunteers in helping ASAS to achieve this. Even now after so many years, I still get a thrill when I see the children and young people enjoying themselves. 

Outside of ASAS I enjoy being with my four grandchildren, going out and about, keeping fit and lots more.

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Sarah Lee


I knew of ASAS as many of the children and young people (and their parents) that I worked with as a community paediatrician benefitted from attending the playschemes and residentials. 

When I retired, I asked Chris Parapia if there was any way I could help and she suggested I become a trustee. It has been fascinating to learn all that goes into making the scheme work. 

I particularly enjoyed being part of the team at the Christmas Activity Day and seeing the happiness of the children and young people who attended. 

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Jo Galasso

Project Manager

I started working for ASAS in summer 1991, when my son was 6 months old. 

I absolutely love my work and have two philosophies that I stick to:

1.) Everything is do-able - We strive to fulfil this ideal when meeting the individual needs of the children we work with.

2.) Que sera, sera - What will be, will be. We can't always change things, but we can most definitely have a good try. 

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Siân Dempsey


My ASAS journey began in 2006 when I first volunteered for the charity. I went on to become a Junior Leader and then a Leader, and I loved every minute! The charity has always been very important to myself and my family, so I was thrilled to return to ASAS in the role of Administrator in January 2020 and have really enjoyed working so closely with all the parents and carers.


I am passionate about disability rights and the importance of safe and accessible opportunities for all. I am therefore proud to be part of making sure ASAS is an amazing place for staff to work and a safe and fun environment for children of all ages and ability levels to enjoy.


Don't hesitate to get in touch if I can be of any help at all!

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Zoe Cartwright

Volunteer Coordinator

I was a secondary school teacher for 16 years, but decided to take a break from my career after starting a family. I have been involved with ASAS as a parent of a child with additional needs for nearly 6 years, so I know first hand what an amazing charity it is, providing invaluable experiences for children and young people and giving us parents some much needed respite. 

I took on the role of Volunteer Coordinator in January 2020 and have loved getting to know all the fantastic people who make the charity work.


We are always on the lookout for new volunteer play workers and volunteer fundraisers to join the team, so if this is something you'd be interested in, drop me a line - I'd love to hear from you! 

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Andy Mosby

Committee Member

I was a social worker from 1984 until my recent retirement. At present, I am also a part-time learning assistant at Bradford College. 

I've been on the ASAS committee since 1989! I enjoy being on the committee because I've seen over the years how much the children enjoy themselves and the benefits to parents and siblings of having a much-needed break. 

Outside of work I enjoy listening to and playing music, walking, being with family, and worshipping and volunteering at my local church. 

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Jenny Jeffels

Committee Member

Being part of ASAS makes me feel alive and gives me purpose in my retirement.

I regularly volunteer during the playschemes . After each scheme I wash, dry and iron all the staff t-shirts. I also make sure that the First Aid kits are all in order and keep the Go-Bags topped up and ready for every scheme, activity day and residential short break.

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Emma Midgley

Committee Member and Treasurer

In 2018, I was invited to become a committee member and gladly accepted, having volunteered to help at a few local fundraising events. I simply wanted to do something more to help this wonderful charity. As a family we benefit greatly from the incredible work of ASAS. Becoming a committee member gives me the chance to help ASAS to continue their work in supporting children and families like ours.

Outside of ASAS I am a very busy mum of four. I enjoy being with my family and friends, reading and the occasional Saturday off. 

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Kathie Hunter

Committee Member

I have been involved with ASAS for over six years as a parent to a child with additional needs. I had always been really impressed with the activities  that ASAS offer and the dedication of their staff, and wanted to do something to support their work, so I was delighted to be invited to be a trustee and get more involved with the charity!


I work at the University of Leeds managing  projects and really enjoy being a member of the committee team and supporting the fantastic work that ASAS do.