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Our grateful thanks...

Date posted: 01/07/2020

Dear Members,

It is with great appreciation and some regret that we extend our good wishes to two special, highly talented people who have done so much to promote HGI and to make us so much more effective and efficient as an organisation: Declan Lyons, now standing down as chair of HGI, and Sue Saunders, stepping back from all her many roles within HGI and the college.

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Declan, who has been chair of HGI since 2015, brought enormous commitment to his role heading up the institute. He enthusiastically promoted human givens in Ireland, through public lectures, broadcasts and seminars, and in his practice as a consultant psychiatrist at St Patrick’s University College Hospital, Dublin. No one who attended the HGI biennial conferences that he chaired in 2016 and 2018 could have failed to enjoy his glorious wit or appreciate his wide knowledge and genuine desire to give everyone the chance to be heard – he will be much missed in that role at the next one. Those HG practitioners living near to him in Dublin had the privilege of getting presentations from him at peer groups and he was always ready to offer phone support whenever needed. Colleagues and patients alike comment on his tremendous warmth as an individual, his generosity with his time and his caring nature ­– besides supporting the spread of HG ideas, he has also strongly been committed down the years to the cause of global human rights. Pressures of work and family in these extra demanding times have required him to relinquish his post, so HGI board member Julie Lawrence is standing in as acting chair until a successor is in place.

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Sue Saunders’ contributions to human givens are innumerable. She, together with Ian Thomson, did the lion’s share of the massive amount of work (all unpaid) required for HGI to achieve accredited register status with the Professional Standards Authority in the UK. As chair of the Registration and Professional Standards Committee, she worked tirelessly to raise standards and deal fairly and efficiently with the concerns of, and complaints against, HG practitioners. She rose to Head of Education at the Human Givens College in acknowledgement of her inspired work in creating the current synergy between Parts 1 and 2 of the Human Givens Diploma, including the development of the highly successful 'Week 3', helping standardise the eight core subjects covered in Part 1 and bringing on new trainers. She, too, has promoted human givens wherever she can through talks and lectures, leading most notably, in one case, to bringing the teaching of the core HG subjects to the US. Just recently she was one of a stellar line up presenting at the international Trauma Summit 2020 in Belfast. Those who know her will have enjoyed equally her wisdom and her wicked sense of humour, and appreciated her willingness always to go the extra mile and to help anyone in need. Although standing back from teaching and her other roles, she will continue to offer counselling at the Dublin Human Givens Centre, which she founded. 

We would also like to take this opportunity to thank Avril Bailey, who stepped down from her position as Co-ordinator for the RSPC at the end of her contract last month, for her considerable hard work over the last year, and to welcome Lyndsey Poustie, who has recently taken over Avril's position.

We welcome too long-standing HGI member Trevor Bailey, who has kindly agreed to join the RPSC as Co-chair, and new committee members Kim Hood, Colin Mawhinney, Elaine Curtin and Lucy Hamilton-James. We are very grateful to everyone who volunteers their time to the RPSC and the EOC, they play an extremely valuable role in maintaining our standards of professionalism.

With all our best wishes

from everyone
on the HGI Board

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