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Baroness Jowell and empowerment

01 February, 2018

Baroness Jowell; fighting the effects of a brain tumour

• BARONESS Jowell has operated on the big stage for a long time and is one of the rare people who changes attitudes, and makes history.

The recent publicity concerning her fight against a brain tumour (Tessa Jowell: ‘I want to take risk with treatment’, ex-minister with brain tumour… January 25) takes me back several decades when she made history for me.

It’s a simple story but one we, especially women, can perhaps learn from. I was an unconfident young woman sitting next to Tessa at a Gospel Oak ward meeting.

The chair invited people to put themselves forward as school governors, heady heights to which I wouldn’t aspire. Tessa nudged me and said “You can do that”. So I did, and then another school and vice-chair of another, charities and a hospital trust council.

It started with that moment, that encouragement on that day.

Let’s never forget individual empowerment and not be so focused on big changes that we forget to look sideways and say to small people: “You can do it.”









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