Friday, 19 April 2024
Friday, 19 April 2024

Paul Twynam celebrates 25 years at Hft

THE themes of learning and development, and how processes and governance can help to support people with learning disabilities to lead a more independent life underpin the stellar career of Bristol man, Paul Twynam, who is celebrating 25 years of working for a national learning disability charity.

Paul is Data Protection Manager at Hft, which supports adults with learning disabilities to live the best life possible

Before starting at Hft, Paul worked as a trainer where he had the opportunity to work with charity and learning disability clients. It was this link that he felt made him a good fit for Hft initially. So, in 1997, Paul started at Hft as a Management Trainer, making up one-half of the small team at the time.

Over the past 25 years, Paul has taken on a number of roles at the charity. In 2017, he worked on moving the organisation towards compliance with the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) that were coming into force the following year. After leading this project, Paul was offered the job of Data Protection Manager which he views as an extension of his first job at Hft; the themes of learning and improvement have continued.

When asked about how Hft has changed as a whole in 25 years, Paul said:

“Hft has improved immeasurably as an organisation and continues to have the heart and passion to do the right thing.”

He described the improvements he has seen in Hft’s processes, responsibilities and governance, which have all effectively moved towards giving the people Hft support a more independent life.

Over the course of his career, Paul has had some fantastic experiences including an opportunity to teach management training courses in countries such as the Netherlands, Ireland, Romania and Bulgaria. He shared a fond memory of running a management training course under a cherry tree on a farm in Budapest where he was later invited to ride (or attempt to ride) a black stallion belonging to the farmer.

Paul described these experiences as ‘hugely challenging but weird and wonderful’, noting that the good achieved in the end made it all worthwhile.

Looking to his future, Paul plans to keep doing what he has been doing for the past 25 years. His job is ever-evolving and he has always made an effort to ask lots of questions and go wherever the job takes him. He’d like to improve the utilisation of data and work on an integrated approach to policy as it evolves.

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