I have been a practising artist for over thirty-five years. I have also used my creative experience to support people with a wide variety of additional needs. These are the roots of my interest in Art Therapy.
During the 1980's I worked as a community artist facilitating workshops and residencies with disadvantaged communities across London. In the 1990's I joined a disability organisation. I became the senior manager in a team responsible for developing a Centre for Independent Living for disabled people of all ages. Between 1995 and 2010 I worked closely with local agencies in developing children's services in Hammersmith and Fulham (a London borough). I was responsible for the delivery of the borough's disability youth programme, helping young disabled people meet the challenges of transition to adulthood. This work has been used as a model of good practice. I sat on local and national advisory panels for disability and youth work. These roles have given me a lot of experience with child protection and the issues facing vulnerable adults. This has also developed my interest in working with young people experiencing anxiety in relation to disability and additional needs.
I moved to Ireland with my family in 2010 and returned to study. I graduated with a First Class Master's Degree in Art Therapy from the Crawford College CIT Cork in 2014; I made a particular study of how clients use "mess-making behaviours" to challenge boundaries and explore the world. Since graduation I have taught on the Masters course and in 2019 delivered a group workshop programme on the departments Art Therapy Summer School.
I have provided Art Therapy in Cork schools and the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS). My practice is registered with the HSE and I have received referrals from TUSLA, Cork Children and Family Services since 2015. In 2016/17 I spent a year working in the Art Therapy Department of the Psychiatric Unit at the Mercy Hospital in Cork. Alongside my private practice, I am also currently working for Barnardos Children's Bereavement Service.
My integrative approach to art therapy is informed by a wide range of psychoanalytical theory and careful reflection on my own creative process.
I am an active member of the Irish Association of Creative Art Therapists (IACAT). I have delivered training and workshops on a number of programmes including the Masters Course at CIT Cork.
I work within Children First Guidelines and have been Garda checked by the Barnardo's vetting service.