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Benita Refson OBE Chief Executive and Founding Trustee of Place2Be

Benita Refson, OBE is Chief Executive and Founding Trustee of Place2Be, the award-winning national children's charity providing integrated, early-intervention support to 68,000 children in over 175 UK schools and offering training and advice for teachers and parents. Place2Be effectively prevents the downward spiral that can lead to low aspirations, poor educational achievement, truancy and exclusion from school. It helps improve attainment and academic progress and builds children's resilience.

In her role as Chief Executive, Benita has steered and developed Place2Be to become the leading provider of school-based mental health provision. She works full-time for the organisation in a voluntary capacity. Under Benita's leadership, Place2Be has been recognised for the strength of its scalable cost-effective model, the high quality and measurability of its results and demonstrable impact.

Benita is a qualified counsellor having trained at Regents College, London and The Westminster Pastoral Foundation.

In June 2007 Benita was awarded an OBE ‘for services to Children and Families' and in 2009 she received an Honorary Doctor of Law from the University East London. In 2010 Benita was awarded The Beacon Judges' Special Prize for Outstanding Philanthropic Achievement.

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