Specialist Team

Our team is made up of specialists all of whom have a range of skills and are able to offer support and expertise to the network, we will proactively engage with Local Safeguarding Children Boards (LSCB’s) and their partner agencies, researchers and policy writers promoting Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE), training, prevention work, disruption, prosecution and therapeutic care for victims and survivors by sharing effective practice, developing according to need, and actively seeking effective practice from other countries tackling sexual exploitation and trafficking within the UK.

Sheila Taylor MBE:


27 years experience in the voluntary sector empowering young people to achieve against all odds.

15 years understanding and tackling the issues of Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) and internal trafficking within the United Kingdom. Previously managed projects working with sexually exploited young people, young runaways, several years volunteering with the Princes Trust and the Guide Association.

In 2010 Sheila was made a Member of the British Empire (MBE) for her work with Sexually Exploited Children. In 2012 she was awarded an Honorary Masters Degree from Derby University.

Phil Ashford:

Response Unit Operational Lead

Phil’s background is community safety, where he spent 7 years in a role working with communities, the police and other agencies to prevent crime and anti-social behaviour. During the last 4 years of that role Phil worked in Sheffield city centre and became involved in the city’s response to child sexual exploitation. Prior to joining the NWG, Phil spent 3 years managing Sheffield’s multi-agency Child Sexual Exploitation service, overseeing the implementation of a new model of working and the integration of new agencies to the service.

Phil can be contacted on 07399 449035 or Phil@nwgnetwork.org

Kevin Murphy:

Response Unit Safeguarding Sport Lead

Kevin has worked within the children’s workforce in a number of roles for a significant number of years. He has been a front line practitioner and worked his way up through the ranks to becoming an operational manager and finally was a Head of Service for a local authority children’s services department.

Kevin has a wealth of experience working with vulnerable children and their families and he has a unique perspective and understanding of special educational needs and disability (SEND).

Kevin can be contacted on 07399 449 045 or Kevin@nwgnetwork.org

Steve Baguley:

Response Unit Community and Education Lead

Steve has a wealth of experience in Children’s Services, at both operational and managerial levels. He has been a Head of Service for Integrated Safeguarding and Early Intervention, as well as leading on the development of integrated services, including health, social care, and education. This included the implementation of locality vulnerable children meetings, which have been nationally recognised as good practice by OFSTED and the Local Government Association. Steve has also previously worked as an assistant head teacher.

Steve has recently been working as a consultant for the NWG, focussing on work with 16 and 17-year olds and the preparation for transition into adulthood. Steve has authored a report regarding this key area of learning, as well as developing a benchmarking tool for services and a training package for operational staff.

Steve has a track record of addressing cultural change at a strategic level to better inform service delivery and design.

Steve can be contacted on 07399 449034 or Steve@nwgnetwork.org

Kay Wallace:

Response Unit Police and Justice Lead

Kay is an experienced Child Protection Manager, having investigated and managed child abuse investigations for over 25-yrs of her police service. She has managed many serious and complex CSE investigations (Online and Offline).

In October 2015, she took became the CSE regional coordinator for the West Midlands region gaining extensive experience and knowledge about approaches to investigating and disrupting CSE from learning around the country.

Kay took up the post of Police and Justice Lead for the NWG Response Unit in May 2018


Aunika Blake:

Youth Participation Lead

Aunika is a JNC Qualified Youth Worker and Trainer with over 10 years of experience working in the voluntary sector. Having worked for a number of National Children Charities, Aunika also possess International Youth Work experience gain from through Erasmus funded Youth Exchange Projects and Girl Guides. Inspired from her Research Study trip to Holland, where she compared UK’s Sexual Health Education to the Netherlands; Aunika went on to study further a Masters in Sexual Health. Later Aunika was active in delivering Sex and Relationship Education to young people and professionals across England.

In one of her recent roles Aunika provided support, safeguarding and advocacy to children and young people who were going missing from home and care in Birmingham. Competent in strategies, policies and procedures in tackling Child Exploitation; Aunika is devoted to identifying and breaking barriers that impact adolescent development.

Aunika joined as Youth Participation Lead in September 2018.

You can contact Aunika on 01332 585371/07852 576119 and aunika.blake@nwgnetwork.org

Maria Cassidy:

Response Unit Parental Engagement Lead

Maria has worked as a youth and community worker for 15 years delivering informal education and participation work with young people in statutory and voluntary sector settings.

After graduating with a Masters in Anthropology Youth and Community Work from Goldsmiths University, Maria went on to become the Senior Training and Curriculum Worker for Bristol City Council Youth Services as well as representing the service on sexual health.

Maria can be contacted on 07399 449 041 or Maria@nwgnetwork.org

Sarah Brown:


Since gaining a degree in Youth Studies from Nottingham Trent University Sarah has worked within a variety of backgrounds supporting vulnerable young people and their families, including the role of Pastoral Manager in a secondary school and as a Family Resource Worker.

After volunteering as a counsellor for several years at Childline, Sarah was employed as a supervisor.

It was at Childline she developed as a trainer, working to increase the skills, knowledge and empathy of volunteers in areas such as bullying, abuse, neglect, domestic violence, self-harm and suicide to ensure young people received the best possible support available. Sarah’s time at Childline also involved managing and assessing both safeguarding issues and immediate life threatening situations presented by young people within the counselling room.

Sarah joined the NWG team in 2016

Sarah can be contacted 01332 585 371 / 07949446769 or Sarah@nwgnetwork.org

Cheryl Stevens:

Network Lead & Deputy Manager

Cheryl has over 22 years’ experience of working in the area of child sexual exploitation within the voluntary sector.

Cheryl has worked as a trainer and community awareness raiser, led a young person focussed outreach team, recruited and managed volunteers for a vulnerable young person focussed charity and worked as a parent support worker.

Cheryl joined the NWG in 2012 as the network coordinator and has seen that role grow as the network has grown.

Cheryl can be contacted on 01332 585371 (office hours only) or network@nwgnetwork.org

Sophie May:

Network Assistant

Sophie is our Network Assistant and joined the NWG in March 2017

With over 7 years of office administration experience predominantly in the care sector Sophie’s role at the NWG includes assisting with the growing membership, overseeing our online chat system and inputting and updating the website and social media channels. She is currently studying for a Level 2 Certificate in Awareness of Mental Health Problems and is due to finish the course by the end of 2018.

Sophie can be contacted on 01332 585 371 or sophie@nwgnetworrk.org


Natalie Grainger:

Business & Executive Administrator

Natalie joined the NWG in 2015 after working in a voluntary sector CSE project for 13 years.

Prior to that she had worked for a major financial institution in the HR & Training field since leaving school.

Natalie has bought considerable skills, knowledge and experience of administration, office management, finance and CSE to the organisation.

She acknowledges the huge steps forward which have been made since she first started working in this sector in 2002 in relation to awareness of this form of child abuse and the outcomes for children and young people.

Natalie can be contacted on 01332 585 371 or Natalie@nwgnetwork.org

Katie Elam:

Business Development Manager

Katie has come to NWG to be Business Development Manager from 4 years managing a charity working with women affected by the sex industry; bringing restoration and enabling women to make life changing informed choices. With 13 years experience of leadership in the voluntary sector Katie has a background of project management, international development and fundraising.

In 2015 Katie obtained an MSc in Poverty Reduction and Development Management and went on to work for Results UK and Skillshare International, working to reduce poverty, injustice and inequality in partnership with people and communities. Having also worked to support vulnerable young people and children in Brazil and Russia she is passionate about protecting young people and tackling CSE and trafficking.

Katie can be contacted on 01332 585 371 or Katie@nwgnetwork.org

Bina Radcliffe:

Response Unit Safeguarding Lead

Bina graduated with a law degree from the Nottingham Trent University and has always had a keen interest in child protection. Bina has a background of working in forensic science for Nottinghamshire Constabulary and then moved to Derbyshire Constabulary as a forensic intelligence analyst, assisting the Operation Retriever investigation team.

Bina spent 2 years as a CSE coordinator for the Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland safeguarding children’s boards, developing and delivering the multi agency response to CSE, before moving to the NWG to continue to raise the profile and awareness of CSE at a national level.

Bina can be contacted on 07415 897725 or Bina@nwgnetwork.org