By Catherine Shaw
It is with great sadness that we are bidding farewell, to one of our valued board members, Louise Valsinger. Louise joined the board in 2019, shortly after having co-hosted a very successful One Small Step Walk in Scotland.
Louise, who is Mum to Mariella and Albie (PWS), was a huge asset to the FPWR UK team. Not only did she have the drive that most PWS parents have – to change the future for her son and others, but she also had the scientific knowledge to fully understand all the research and to be able to unpick and translate it into layman’s terms for the rest of us. Louise worked as a liaison between us and FPWR in America to keep up to date with all the latest research information.
While on FPWR UK’s board, Louise gave us a huge injection of enthusiasm, bringing fresh blood, and positivity. She worked on building relationships with the PWS clinics, was a contact for Soleno to help promote their clinical trial and was instrumental in raising our profile amongst the endocrinologists in the UK, with much communication and attending conferences.
For now, Louise has decided to take a step back. As with all our volunteers, she has a job, a family to care for, and other commitments, and has worked for FPWR UK in her free time out of the goodness of her heart. It is time now for her to concentrate on her family more. She will however continue to be a fundraiser, and advocate for FPWR UK, as she continues to believe that research is the way forward. She is passionate about seeing more clinical trials in the UK and will continue to fight for this.
We must also thank Joakim, Louise’s husband, who has been at her side supporting her FPWR UK journey. He has also been a keen fundraiser, and through his company, Balans Pilates, has travelled the country doing pilates sessions for people with PWS and their caregivers, whilst raising funds for FPWR UK. Joakim continues to give video pilates advice to PWS families and use his skills to help raise funds.
This is “See you later” to Louise, not “Goodbye”. We are incredibly grateful for everything Louise has done for FPWR UK. We are sad to see her go but wish her well in all she does.
FPWR UK are always on the look out for keen and enthusiastic volunteers to work along side us which may ultimately lead to a place on the board. Please get in touch if this sounds like something you might like to do.