Get in touch

  • 0161 212 4981

  • Empowered Conversations
    Six Degrees, Southwood House,
    Greenwood Business Centre,
    Regent Rd, Salford
    M5 4QH


Monday – Friday 9:00 – 5:00

Our Team

Phil McEvoy (PhD, RMN)Managing Director Six Degrees Social Enterprise CIC
I am the Managing Director of Six Degrees Social Enterprise, a Community Interest Company based in Salford. In 30 years of work as a Mental Health Nurse and I have worked across the full range of services in primary and secondary care, as a front line clinician and manager. Throughout this time I have maintained active research interest, which focuses upon the development of relationally centred approaches to service delivery, based on the psychodynamically informed principles care.
• Member of INTERDEM pan-European network of researchers collaborating in research on and dissemination of Psychosocial Interventions in Dementia
• Member of the Greater Manchester, Lancashire and South Cumbria Clinical Senate
• Trustee of charity the Transform Research Alliance
• Author of more than 30 published articles and book chapters
Emma Smith (MSc, BA)Project Manager
I have over 15 years’ experience of project start-up, management and delivery gained across the environmental and health and social care sector in Manchester and Salford.

I am passionate about investing my energy, time and enthusiasm in to the social enterprise sector and I’m proud to work and live in Salford. For the past 4 years I have directed my career towards working more and more with people living with dementia and those affected by dementia.

Director – Empower You – supporting disabled people and those around them to lead more active lives.

Director – Adventure Awaits – Rock Over Climbing 

Lydia Morris (PhD, ClinPsyD)Research Fellow and Clinical Psychologist
I have over 10-years experience of clinical practice and research in Salford and Greater Manchester. I trained as a Clinical Psychologist (ClinPsyD) and then pursued my increasing interest in research by doing a PhD (both the ClinPsyD and PhD were at the University of Manchester). In the past 6-years I have focused on research developing psychological interventions.
I am committed to developing helpful interventions that improve services and better meet peoples’ needs. I am excited by the opportunity to use my skills to develop and evaluate the Empowered Conversations approach to meet the needs of those living with dementia and their carers.
Angela RyanProject Support
I started working with Six Degrees over 3 years ago as an Admin Assistant and after 12 months I began working with the Empowered Conversations Team.
Since then I have completed the online Understanding Dementia Course and have attended the Empowered Conversations Carer’s Course.

I feel privileged to be a part of the Empowered Conversations team who all show their enthusiasm, dedication and professionalism in whatever they are doing. Empowered Conversations has developed so much in the last two years, I’m excited to see where it goes next!

Dr Margaret Garner (MRCGP, MMedSci child health, MMT (Nordoff Robbins) Music, Health, Society)Facilitator
I trained as a doctor and have worked in Greater Manchester and Salford for 35 years as a community paediatrician and as a GP, before graduating as a Music Therapist in 2015.

I now work as a Music Therapist with Aspire at the Humphrey Booth Resource Centre in Swinton, Salford, with carers and people living with dementia. I am supported by a grant from Booth Charities.

I facilitate courses for Empowered Conversations with Six Degrees Social Enterprise CIC. I am also developing a related, music–centred course. Qualities of music- pulse, dynamics and phrasing- are also inherent qualities of spoken language. ‘Playing’ with these qualities within music making can illuminate our understanding of other forms of communication, both verbal and non-verbal.

I want to help carers and people living with dementia enhance their communication with each other and sustain their relationships; key factors in improving their quality of life.

Clare TallisFacilitator
I am passionate about movement and wellness and to this end taught Physical Education in secondary schools for eight years and led outdoor adventure activities for teenagers in the UK and abroad. More recently I retrained as a Physiotherapist and have worked for the last ten years within the NHS in Stroke rehabilitation. This has allowed my interest and passion for wellbeing in dementia to develop and also made me keenly aware for the need for supportive training such as Empowered Conversations.

I first discovered the Empowered Conversations course when I took part as a participant in 2017 to support my professional role and also my communication with my own mum who was diagnosed with vascular dementia in 2015. I immediately understood and experienced at a practical personal level the value of the course. I was delighted to be invited to complete training in order to join the team and deliver the course to others across Greater Manchester.

Barbara Lewis BA(Hons), PGCEFacilitator

Barbara Lewis has successfully pursued a number of careers – fashion buyer, Further Education teacher and music teacher – all of which have good communication at their heart. However, she says the two most important jobs she has had are bringing up her two, now grown up, children and caring for her mother after she developed dementia.

She is currently an entrepreneur developing the range of clothing she designed for her mother to maintain her dignity.

She came across Empowered Conversations when she was introduced to Emma by a colleague. She related to the philosophy of the Empowered Conversations communications course as it was very much akin to the approach she had taken during her own caring experiences.

She was absolutely delighted to be approached to train to facilitate the course. She wants to help carers and people living with dementia maintain their relationships through good communication, understanding and empathy.

As a fellow musician she is also helping Margaret Garner develop the music-centred course, as she used music in many ways with her own mother and is very much convinced that music has a great role to play in communication.

Natalie WarrickCo-Facilitator
I started with Six degrees as a volunteer 18 months ago on the Empowered conversations project. During this time i had the opportunity to become a permanent member of the team in the admin department for Six degrees and Empowered Conversations as a co facilitator.

I have completed an online Understanding Dementia Course and now volunteer for Dementia Support Services – Age UK Salford. Volunteering has built up my understanding of how dementia affects people – those living with the disease and their family and friends. I am thrilled to be part of this project and excited to see what the future has in store for Empowered conversation.

Rachel Yates
Rachel Yates Hoyles (BSc. Hons, PGCert Dip.)Project Manager
I am the project manager for the Empowered Carers project at Six Degrees. I have worked in the voluntary sector for the last 15 years supporting people living with dementia and people who care for them. I have gained many skills, knowledge and experience. This has fuelled my passion to develop and share best practice in dementia care so that each one of us receives genuine compassionate care that enables us to live the best life we can.

I am qualified to post graduate level and I am known for my professional, approachable and practical style that is person focused and underpins my compassionate and community values. My special interests are in meaningful activity and End of Life care.

Amanda Barrell
Amanda Barrell (Dip Cons, Dip HYP, SNHS Dip – Stress Mgt)Project Facilitator
I have 30 years’ of professional and personal experience supporting people with various needs and their carers. I am passionate about well-being and ‘living well with dementia’ for both carer and the person living with dementia. I joined the Empowered Conversations team in May 19.

I am a qualified counsellor and Hypnopsychotherapist. I have worked in a range of settings providing therapeutic interventions in areas such as stress management, weight management and bereavement. I’ve been a team leader for Dementia advisors in Oldham for the last 5 years, providing activities within the community for people living with Dementia and their carers. I was also the co-ordinator of Oldham Dementia Action Alliance. I have lived in Salford all of my life and am very proud to be part of the team and to now both live and work in my home town.

Jen Earl
Jen Earl (BA (Hons), MA, PGCERT, Fellow of the HEA)Facilitator
I am a Health librarian, working at Salford University teaching students and staff how to find and assess the best evidence for research and assignments. I helped care for my mum when she was diagnosed with dementia a few years ago. This led to me trying to find information and support to help me find better ways of communicating.

I attended the Empowered Conversations course which I found incredibly helpful in both finding better ways to communicate but also in meeting other people in similar situations. I was then really excited to become part of the team, training to become a facilitator whilst proving support to the team delivering the courses. I feel very passionate about Empowered Conversations and the work they do to help support those caring for family living with dementia. The course gave me the opportunity to improve communications with my mum, making our time together much easier and creating a more positive relationship between us. I believe very strongly in the work we do, the help and support we provide and I feel honoured to be part of such a vibrant, passionate and dedicated team and look forward to supporting future courses.

Paul Earl
Paul Earl (BSc Hons, PG Dip, ITiL Man)Facilitator
With an initial background in Mathematics, I spent over 20 years working within both higher education and social housing in various management and project roles. Having lost nearly 4 stone in 2015, I now run my own Slimming World groups in Swinton, helping and supporting others as they transform their lives.

My mother-in Law Nancy was diagnosed with both vascular dementia and Alzheimer’s. To say I was struggling would be an understatement but in 2016, along with my wife we attended an Empowered conversations course. While not giving me all the answers, it did enable us to improve our communications and ultimately the whole relationship. It is now a total privilege to work within Empowered Conversation as a course facilitator. I am honoured to be part of an amazing team who are 100% committed to supporting both family carers and people living with dementia improve their relationships.

The University of SalfordInstitute for Dementia
The University of Salford’s Institute for Dementia is an international research institute engaged in research, innovation, enterprise, education and engagement work. The focus of this work is enabling people whose lives are affected by dementia to live well.
The University of Salford is a key research partner for the Big Lottery project – Delivery of emPoWereD conversations course for family carers affected by dementia across Greater Manchester and we also have a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) funded with the University by Innovate UK.