Melanie joined Aberdeen Play Forum in August 2017.  Melanie for many years worked as an Early Years Practitioner within Childcare settings across Aberdeen.  Melanie also specialises in working closely with children with additional support needs.  Melanie is a qualified Fitness Instructor and Personal Trainer and enjoys keeping fit.  She strongly believes in the benefits of free play and risky play and would like to see other youngsters having the experiences she did as a child. Out of work, Melanie enjoys Hill walking, Socialising and Travelling. 

Stuart has been involved with Aberdeen Play Forum for many years and for the last 3 as chair. Stuart's key priority for Aberdeen Play Forum is to ensure that all children in Aberdeen have access to high quality play spaces and opportunities.  Stuart's day job is Early Years Manager with Aberdeen City Council.  Previous to this Stuart has worked in a number of communities throughout Scotland, in a variety of roles.  His work has most significantly involved building community capacity, facilitating the involvement of children in the life of their own communities, and seeking to improve the life chances of disadvantaged, disengaged or vulnerable children and families.

Karen started her post at Aberdeen Play Forum in 2016. Prior to becoming a Development Worker, Karen worked with many schools throughout the city, specialising in additional support needs and inclusion. Before officially joining Aberdeen Play Forum, Karen worked with us on our Woodland Play Scheme in 2014 and 2015, and is looking forward to taking a more active role this year. Away from the office she enjoys getting outdoors whenever possible, including travelling and walking her dog.

Stuart Patterson - Chair

Mary Crear - Vice-Chair

Claire joined the Play Forum in 2015 as a Play Development Worker.  Claire is now on our relief pool, having left the role of Play Development Worker in 2017 when she became a mummy to her wee boy.  Claire has many years’ experience in the Early Years Sector, and also works part-time as  Forest Schools Practitioner.

Claire loves to see children playing outdoors, embracing nature, getting mucky and enjoying good old fashioned play experiences.

Out of work Claire enjoys spending time with her family, exploring outdoor spaces with her husband and introducing her wee boy to these spaces.  Claire is also partial to doing some home baking and decorating cakes!paragraph here.

Karen Shepherd - Play Development Officer

Mary has supported Aberdeen Play Forum in the capacity of chair and vice chair for almost 15 years.  Mary firmly believes that children should experience the same freedom to play as she did as a child.  The evidence is clear that children today have less opportunity for outdoor play than previous generations.

​The Play Forum is therefore vitally important to improving play environments and opportunities for free play in Aberdeen.  In her day job Mary is the Service Manager for Aberlour Futures.  As a member of the Play Forum, Aberlour (Scottish Children's Charity) provides the employment and line management of the Play Development Worker and Play Ranger posts.

01224 518 578 

Christina Davis - Play Ranger

Melanie Jaffrey  - Play Development Officer

Rebecca Smith  - Play Ranger

Claire Lawrence  - Relief Play Development Officer

Rebecca Joined Play Forum In November 2018. Prior to joining Rebecca attained a level 6 in Health and Social Care at North East Scotland College and has experience through being a Befriender working with children who have additional support needs and mental health issues. Rebecca is very interested in working with children and providing support for families.

Rebecca has been seeing the benefits of free and risky play within her working day and believes that all children should have access to this and be given the chance to develop their mental health, social and cognitive development through loose parts in order to give them the best chances in life. Outside of work Rebecca volunteers, socialises with friends and spends valuable time with her young son.