My background is in Law and in modern foreign languages and I have experience of teaching in both mainstream comprehensives and Special Needs education. During my degree course I spent a year teaching and studying in Celaya, Guanajuato, in Mexico, a society with a radically different perspective on family and community life from the one I had been used to. I experienced a profound culture shock but also felt great joy at being surrounded by people who unashamedly lived the faith through their own prayer life and in community, who by and large valued people over material possessions and where children were regarded as a blessing and were at the heart of any social gathering, whatever the occasion or hour of the day. This experience made me realise that the English way was not the only way of doing things. It gave me the chance to reflect on the expectations of English society and to see how very often our faith and family life in this country are undermined by the constraints of social expectation here. In 2002 I obtained a Certificate in Parish Catechesis from the Maryvale Institute in Birmingham and have been working since then in our Parish, organising and helping run groups for families with young children.