Dr Melrose Stewart MBE has become the latest patron of national advocacy charity for vulnerable, marginalised and socially excluded individuals, POhWER.
Dr Stewart is a health and well-being specialist, having been awarded her MBE in the 2020 New Year’s Honours List for services to physiotherapy. She’s also a Chartered Physiotherapist, an Honorary Lecturer at the University of Birmingham and she appeared as one of the experts in the hugely successful Channel 4 programme, “Old people’s home for 4-year-olds”. She continues to promote the benefits of intergenerational activities, such as physical exercise, when improving social inclusion for the older generation.
Dr Stewart is also well-known for breaking down stigmas and challenging discriminatory practices, especially around the topics of racism and ageism. It was for her services in diversity and equality that resulted in her being the recipient of a Distinguished Service Award from the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy.
Speaking about her new role with POhWER, Dr Stewart said: “I believe my work as an educator, Chartered Physiotherapist, member of Her Majesty’s Judiciary and campaigner for equality of health and well-being aligns with the broad spectrum, aims and ethos of POhWER’s mission.
“Empowering people, giving a voice to the disadvantaged and improving lives is wholly consistent with the emphasis in the contributions I would like to make. It’s a real privilege to be joining Helen and the rest of the team at POhWER – I very much look forward to meeting more of its staff members, learning more about the work it does and throwing my support behind it in any way that I can.”
Helen Moulinos, the charity’s Chief Executive, added: “It’s such a pleasure to be welcoming Mel as our latest patron – her passion for health and well-being, as well as her drive to help those who might feel disadvantaged due to their age or race, naturally coincides with everything that POhWER stands for. For example, out of the 400,000 individuals we supported last year, 20% were over 75 years old and 12% identified as BAME.
“It’s an exciting year for POhWER too – we’re providing more services across the UK than ever before, launching studies and surveys to examine the state of British Human Rights in this country and turning twenty-five years of age – and I’m excited that Mel will now be joining us on this journey.”
Dr Melrose Stewart MBE joins POhWER’s other patrons, which include actor, presenter and documentary maker, Peter Duncan, and thriller writer Samantha Lee-Howe, in supporting the charity’s work.