Meet some of the Whirlwind Community

Martin Sloman

Martin is co-founder of Whirlwind, as well as a trained counsellor (MNZAC and BACP accredited).

As Clinical Director of Whirlwind, Martin brings with him a wealth of experience, genuine empathy and a real passion for the cause.

His oft repeated refrain that “sometimes, it’s ok not to be ok” has become a mantra for the work Whirlwind do in the community as we seek to help more men accept that asking for help is a sign of strength, not weakness.

Ryan Edwards

As co-founder and Creative Director, Ryan’s considerable talents lie in storytelling and forging connections, through compassion and authenticity.

A talented singer songwriter of over two decades, Ryan released his second solo album ‘Whirlwind’ in 2009 to coincide with the launch of his charity of the same name.

His soothing tones and honest, resonant lyrics demand attention (particularly noticeable at community outreach performances) – Ryan is an invaluable boon to Whirlwind as we seek to grow, reach other men in our midst and promote positive mental health.

Goose Sisson

Goose (who even signs his name that way!) has the biggest heart. With his hulking 6 foot 1 frame, shiny pate and eye catching piercing, Goose would be terrifying if he wasn’t constantly beaming.

There are those in this world who are happy to do anything for anyone: Goose falls firmly into that category. Be it his time, his advice or his wallet, Goose is never far from the front of the queue when it comes to giving, freely and without a hint of self aggrandizement.

A compelling speaker, joker and all round good guy, Goose is one of us!

Joe Simmonds

An established and respected web developer, strategist and consultant, Joe’s importance to the Whirlwind cause reaches far beyond his extensive skill set.

His natural proclivities to truly listen, love and empathise are rare gifts that we are truly fortunate to have amongst us. Joe doesn’t do things by half and when he talks, people listen, as well they should, to the wisdom he imparts.

In early 2015, Joe agreed to design and implement a new website for Whirlwind through his business SEO Success. The satisfaction we felt with the resulting project was matched only by our delight as Joe also agreed to join the Whirlwind board.

Jo Jenkins

His prodigious talent matched only by his fierce modesty, Jo is a wise head on young shoulders.

Excelling in too many areas (academically and artistically) to list, his value to Whirlwind, like all the men in our midst, comes through his honesty.

Jo bought in to the “no bullshit” ethos of Whirlwind from the get-go, and brightens the room with his presence, as well as regularly displaying introspection and wisdom beyond his years.

Jo’s credo of “be true to yourself and make good decisions” is reflected in both his actions and authenticity.

“Being introduced to and becoming a part of whirlwind has helped me with a sense of belonging to a community and network of men that are doing a huge part in this small corner to help change attitudes toward mental health stigma and discrimination.

“The support and encouragement the guys in whirlwind give truly does make a difference to wider community, not just the men involved but also trickling down to their families.”

– Andrew McGregor