With a background in education, Vera Waters’ diverse and fascinating career really began when she became the first teacher in a Home Office teaching establishment to insist that she be allowed time to address the problems of delinquent teenagers, tremendous changes resulted nationally.
She was appointed as the first Voluntary Service Co-ordinator within the Health Service in the second largest psychiatric hospital in Europe, and it was during this time that she was appointed as a Government ‘Watchdog’.
After in-depth training at the NHS Kings Fund ‘think tank’ Berkhampstead, she became the first non-medic with her own patient list, at the same time becoming one of the country’s 12 leading Health Service Trainers. Pioneering new and futuristic work with institutionalised patients involving preparing people within the community to accept the difficulties experienced by the mentally ill.
During this time she became Chairman of the National Association of Voluntary Help Organisers having direct contact with the Minister for Health. She believed that many patients in psychiatric hospitals were suffering from post traumatic stress disorder as a result of military service in wartime. She established the only British Legion Club for veterans within a psychiatric hospital.
After leaving the NHS to set up her own consultancy in the private sector, she became the first counsellor to be appointed by a police force. At the same time as being retained by the Lancashire Constabulary, she was also a counsellor and trainer to a local hospice. Among her remarkable achievements, Vera was the only civilian to receive a Research Grants award from the Department of Science and Technology (Home Office) in 1987.
“Leaving the NHS gave me the freedom to help people from all walks of life. To offer guidance and advice to other organizations and individuals.”
Whilst retained by Greater Manchester Police she trained officers in other forces throughout the country, including Scotland Yard. In 2000, the Chief Constable awarded Vera with a Commendation. A rare award for a civilian.
During her phenomenal career she has trained nurses, doctors, actors, dancers, airline crews, international sales teams and burnt out media presenters, to name but a few.
In the USA she has pioneered her own special life coaching programme, now embraced by several companies who believe that her presentations bring inspiration and spirituality to the workplace. 2000 to 2012 saw Vera speaking regularly in Chicago and Florida and in 2007 She was invited to address the staff of the state department in Oklahoma. Speaking engagements throughout Virginia, Iowa and Florida have increased her insight into the American way of life and even feature in her after dinner talks. She has spoken in Australia, Berlin, the Isle of Man and Ireland. A seasoned broadcaster she was chosen to be part of the BBC R.A.W. campaign. In 2010 she was a member of a small group who met with Princess Anne as recognition for her work with Booktrust and Bookbite.
She continues to appear on radio and has enjoyed guest appearances on Good Morning Sunday (Radio 2) as well as frequent appearances on Radio Lancashire.
She is a member of the Authors Society and also of the Association of Freelance Writers.
Now concentrating on writing and public speaking, she believes that the importance of our interaction with those around us is immeasurable. Vera talks about everyday experiences and happenings in a positive style. She is a great believer in humour and the important part it plays in our lives.