Meet the team

Our dedicated team have a wealth of experience working in health and social care.

Rikki Garcia

Interim CEO

My role is to support the team with their projects and participate in strategic and operational meetings with partners across North West and North Central London. I work directly with the Board of Trustees to ensure the organisation is well run, financially stable, and achieving our primary objective to amplify the voices of local people, patients, and service users to decision makers and service providers.

In my spare time I am a trustee of a charity providing care homes to older people and Chair of the Healthwatch Bexley Advisory Board. The rest of my time is spent making a mess with, then tidying up after, my nine year old.

Email: rikki.garcia@healthwatchcentralwestlondon.org

 Tsveta Todorova

Finance and Office Manager

My work involves helping the team and keeping the organisation running behind the scenes, by overseeing all admin, finance, facilities, IT and HR. However, I do get involved with our project work from time to time. Before I joined Healthwatch CWL, I worked in the charity sector in operations and finance.

My interests include arts in their varied forms and discovering the marvels of the earth!

Email: tsveta.todorova@healthwatchcentralwestlondon.org

Odeta Pakalnyte

Engagement Manager

I work with patients to improve community health services. My job involves working with GP practices and their Patient Participation Groups, Primary Care Networks, and other service providers, to build good patient engagement that will help improve local health and social care services.

Working in the environment of an ever-changing NHS is a challenge but this is what I like about my job. Having a wonderful Healthwatch CWL team to work with is another reason why I love what I do.

Email: odeta.pakalnyte@healthwatchcentralwestlondon.org

Jill Prawer

Dignity Champions Project Coordinator 

As Dignity Champions Project Coordinator, I am responsible for ‘enter & view’ visits and for managing the Dignity Champions, our team of trained volunteers.

After qualifying as a counsellor, I worked in the voluntary sector for many years before becoming a full-time carer for my son.  I previously worked with Patient Participation Groups in Westminster at Healthwatch CWL.

I'm a big fan of women’s football, and I founded and chair the charity Action FCS, which works on behalf of patients with the ultra-rare disease familial chylomicronaemia syndrome.

Email: jill.prawer@healthwatchcentralwestlondon.org

Alex Weston

Youth Engagement Manager

I am responsible for youth engagement at Healthwatch CWL. I manage our group Young Healthwatch Westminster, and collaborate with professionals, community groups, and organisations working with young people, to ensure that youth voices are listened to by those in power.

I have a mixed professional background. I studied Psychology and went on to roles in customer service, teaching English as a foreign language, and marketing before arriving at Healthwatch CWL.

I feel at home in nature so I'm outdoors as much as I can be, playing sport or exploring. I also like to read, listen to music, write, and cook.

Email: alex.weston@healthwatchcentralwestlondon.org

Sumita Ahmed

Engagement Lead

I plan, organise, and lead engagement activities across Kensington & Chelsea and Westminster. As Engagement Lead, I build relationships with key stakeholders, from service commissioners to local voluntary organisations. As part of this, I run projects aimed at tackling health inequalities in seldom heard groups, by listening to and amplifying community voices.

Often my role involves influencing policy and governance and I have a special interest in promoting community engagement in our communities.

My hobbies include cooking (I would like to write a cook book one day!) and staying fit and active. I also enjoy designing clothes and homeware on the side when I can find the time.

Email: sumita.ahmed@healthwatchcentralwestlondon.org

Nina Flowers

Communications & Marketing Manager

I have spent 15 years helping businesses to grow, working with global charities, and more recently, with creative agencies and start-ups to transform and re-align their brand and business direction.

As well as evolving and raising awareness of our charity brand, I do a fair bit of writing and editing, and I´m currently helping the team with their Communications Strategy.

When I get a bit of free time, I take to the kitchen laboratory to formulate natural skincare, paint abstracts and experiment with Asian and Indian cooking. To burn off all the Asian food, I run, walk and explore the outdoors with our Labrador, Grina.

Email: nina.flowers@healthwatchcentralwestlondon.org

Shukri Xalane

Research and Project Officer

I coordinate our Health and Digital Engagement research project. This involves listening to the local community and working with third sector organisations and both Councils to ensure that local people's views and experiences are heard by decision makers.

I am passionate about reducing health inequalities by amplifying the voices of local communities to ensure that local health services are working well for everyone.

I like going for walks by the river, crocheting and learning how to programme.

Email: shukri.xalane@healthwatchcentralwestlondon.org

Conor Carleton

Research and Project Officer

As part of the Communications team, I develop content for our website, newsletters, and social media about our work and what we're up to. Alongside this, I write reports based on our research and engagement findings and help develop recommendations to share with decision makers. I like to get involved with our public events and projects, too.

Our work can often involve a lot of confusing acronyms. I'm particularly passionate about making conversations around health and social care services accessible and easy to understand.

Outside work you can find me scratching at my violin, off on a cycle, or being disappointed by Queens Park Rangers.

Email: conor.carleton@healthwatchcentralwestlondon.org

Laura May

Voice Exchange

The Voice Exchange is a project that listens to people’s experiences of inpatient and outpatient mental health services. My role is to coordinate all of the meetings and learning from the project.

I have over a decade of experience leading lived experience projects around health and social care issues. I have a particular passion for mental health engagement projects. In my day job, I run a marketing consultancy which works with charities across the UK.

I spend my spare time reading, writing, and trying to resist adopting more pets!

Email: laura.may@healthwatchcentralwestlondon.org