POhWER has four Patrons who have a wide range of backgrounds and experience but all take a real interest in the work we do. They are our first Patron Lord Michael Cashman CBE, Professor Deirdre Kelly CBE, Peter Duncan and Nitu Shah.

Peter Duncan

POhWER Patron Peter Duncan portrait

Actor, presenter and documentary maker, Peter Duncan has long had a ‘daredevil’ image which he first fashioned while he was a presenter on Blue Peter. Today he continues to excite, whether it is competing in Celebrity Total Wipeout in Argentina or walking across a tightrope in his one man show.

His film, television and stage career spans four decades.

Peter was the former Chief Scout and has a real concern for young people. In 2012’s London Marathon he ran for POhWER, having taken part in the first ever London Marathon, running for Blue Peter and being cheered by thousands along the route.

Professor Deirdre Kelly

Professor Deirdre Kelly

Professor Deirdre Kelly is Professor of Paediatric Hepatology at the University of Birmingham and Consultant Paediatric Hepatologist at Birmingham Children’s Hospital. (Hepatology is the study of diseases that affect the liver, gallbladder, biliary tree and pancreas.)

She is a Council Member of the General Medical Council and a Non-Executive Director of the Health Research Authority.

She was a Commissioner on the Care Quality Commission since its inception in 2009.

Professor Kelly was the Care Quality Commission’s champion of older people’s services and children’s services - two causes close to POhWER’s heart.

Lord Michael Cashman

Lord Michael Cashman

Michael Cashman had a highly successful career as an actor, singer, writer and director.

He was a Member of the European Parliament for the West Midlands (Labour) from 1999 to 2014 and has played a key role in promoting equality and human rights and opposing discrimination.

He was joint founder of Stonewall and in 2007 Michael was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Staffordshire for his human rights work.

On 23 of September 2014 Michael was elevated to the House of Lords where he sits as an independent member.

We were delighted that Michael referred to POhWER’s concerns about proposed legislation changes in the Mental Capacity (Amendment) Bill Committee meeting in the House of Lords.

Nitu Shah

Nitu is a professional Indian singer and is well known and well liked for her tremendous voice and her charitable work.

Nitu was born in Nairobi in Kenya. She has always been very passionate about singing and has been performing for nearly 30 years. She has performed in parts of Europe, Africa, America and all over the United Kingdom. She has released 5 Albums of devotional songs and Bhajans.

She is a passionate fundraiser for many great causes and has collected funds for water wells in Kenya, food for life, Children's homes, Children with disabilities and children with Cerebral Palsy.

Nitu hopes her work with POhWER will help to ensure that Gujarati people living with dementia, disability and mental ill health can get the care and support they need.

"Many in our community are living in silence, ignored or not knowing how to get the right care or to access other essential services." says Nitu. "I am honoured to be a patron for POhWER. As a team we can help people with disabilities who are living in silence."