After struggling with the symptoms of a bleeding disorder all her life, Jo was diagnosed with Type 2 Von Willebrand Disease (VWD) fifteen years ago. Jo lives in York with her husband and has three children, two of whom also have the condition.
Jo became a trustee 2 years ago, because she wanted to offer support to the bleeding disorders community which had done so much in the past to support her and her children. In particular Jo is passionate about encouraging more women who feel they may be affected by a bleeding disorder to recognise the symptoms and come forward for testing.
“I was 37 years old before my VWD was finally diagnosed”, says Jo. “We need to raise awareness of Von Willebrand Disease among medical services and the public. There’s a particular need to support women and children who struggle daily with bleeding conditions which are still largely misunderstood and at times unknown.”
Jo is a Doctor of Education and Early Childhood, working as a lecturer and researcher at the University of Hull in East Yorkshire, where she is employed as Programmes Lead for Education, Childhood and Youth Studies. Jo has worked with children and young people for over seventeen years in a variety of contexts before entering academia twelve years ago. She is a senior fellow of the Higher Education Academy and Institute for Lifelong Learning and is passionate about making a difference to the lived experiences of children.
When she can find some free time, Jo enjoys yoga and long walks with her dog.