Our Team

Sonia Shaljean

Sonia Shaljean

Managing Director and Founder - Director of Operations

Prior to founding Lads Need Dads, Sonia has worked within the statutory and voluntary sector in the field of criminal justice, drugs and alcohol, domestic abuse, anger management, homelessness and complex families for over 20 years.

She studied Criminology at Birkbeck University, London and is a trained and experienced alcohol and drugs counsellor, anger management specialist, group-worker and PTTLLS level 4 trainer, level 3 Designated Safeguarding officer, trained restorative practitioner and emotion coach. She is an experienced Funding and development manager, with a track record of successfully devising and setting up innovative projects both in London and Essex.

Sonia identified that many of the male clients she worked with over her career seemed to share a common factor of an absent father and wanted to do something about this so set about devising Lads Need Dads.

Sonia has a heart for prevention work. She is a fellow with the School of Social Entrepreneurs and is a Shackleton Foundation leader.

Sonia holds a Certificate of Education in Managing Charities and Social Enterprise with Anglia Ruskin University. She is also a Trustee with the Men and Boys Coalition which highlights and tackles issues where the needs of men and boys are unmet.