Who we are

Principal Volunteers

  • Willie Patterson, BSc (Soc. Admin.), Diplôme en Sociologie, Dip. App. Social Studies, Cert. Adv. Social Work, CQSW
    • Willie Patterson resigned as Assistant Director (Family & Child Care), Causeway Health and Social Services Trust after 30 years in child protection and family focussed social work to start the Family Spectrum ministry. By this time he and his wife Hazel had been asked to provide a Christian perspective on family issues in many church contexts, and this has developed into the various strands of work in which Family Spectrum is involved.
  • Hazel Patterson, BA, PGCE, Cert Counselling, Assoc. BA (Fine Arts)
    • Hazel Patterson is an artist and former special needs teacher. With her husband, Willie, she has been involved over many years in providing pastoral care for individuals and families in the context of local congregations. Their work has led to involvement in Russia, Kosovo, South Africa and Morocco. Willie and Hazel have been married for over 47 years, and they have four children and nine grandchildren.


  • Stephen Knox, BA, Dip Social Admin & Social Work, CQSW, CASW, AASW
    • Stephen Knox worked as social worker in child protection and Looked After Children for 36 years as practitioner, trainer and manager. He held posts of Assistant Director, Northern Ireland Guardian ad Litem Agency, and Assistant Director, Barnardo’s NI. Stephen was chair of the Knock Child Contact Centre and has provided child protection advice to a number of Christian organisations. He has been involved with Youth for Christ Eastern Europe for nearly 20 years, training social work and social care staff in Moldova and Ukraine.
  • Paul Paynter
    • Paul Paynter is married to Kerry and they have two sons Noah and Ezra. Paul is the Leader of Connect Christian Fellowship in Ballymoney, a non-denominational church. Also, together with his wife, he leads the Christian Family Centre (NI), a residential facility in Armoy, County Antrim, helping families facing various challenging issues, often involving addictions. Paul contributes to the Family Spectrum Board particularly through his experience in management of various registered charities in Northern Ireland, as well as his pastoral work with families.
  • Brian Taylor PhD, CQSW, AASW, FAcSS
    • Brian Taylor is qualified in social work and teaching. After ten years in practice and management he spent fifteen years in training and organisation development in health and social care, and is now Professor of Social Work at Ulster University. He and his wife Mary have four children (now all married) and ten grandchildren. They are involved in various activities in the Catholic Diocese of Down and Connor, including leading Alpha, Marriage and Parenting Courses, as well as being involved in inter-church and cross-community initiatives.
  • Helen Dunn, BA(Hons) Social Work, CQSW, CASW, M.Sc. Advanced Social Work, AASW
    • Helen Dunn worked as a social worker in child protection and family support for 40 years as a practitioner, trainer, senior manager, implementation officer and professional adviser. She held posts in the Northern Health and Social Care Trust, Barnardo`s, Action for Children, the Health and Social Care Board and the Department of Health NI. Helen is also chair of Carrickfergus YMCA, a Board member of Prison Fellowship (NI) and a member of the Advisory Board of Home for Good (NI).

Council of Reference

  • Niall and Sue Barry
    • Bishop Ken and Mrs Helen Clarke
    • Pastor Roy Kerr
    • Rev John Kirkpatrick