My career began in 1998 when I first found employment within a residential care home for adults with learning disabilities, within this work I found great satisfaction in helping people to develop independent living skills and also find opportunities to be active in the local community. Significantly, I also developed an interest in facilitating crafts and art activities to these residents, combining my experience of care work with my passion for all things creative and expressive.
After further employment in residential care environments, performing in children`s theatre and travels to Australia and South America in 2002 I decided to embark upon studies in Creative Therapy. These studies have been the foundations to my career as an arts engagement practitioner,enabling me to facilitate creative arts sessions and projects within charities and organisations.The majority of my work has been working creatively with adults with complex needs from socially marginalised backgrounds and those experiencing mental health issues.
Projects have included a reminiscence project with older people about toys and games, sensory collage for adults with visual impairments, a shadow puppetry show with refugees, collage portraiture with homeless people and recently a photography and collage project with street based sex workers in Manchester. I have been successful in securing Arts Council England and Awards for All funding for a number of these projects. Past partners include Stockport Council, Refugee Action, Centrepoint, Manchester Action on Street Health, Arts Recovery in the Community, WomenMatta and The Wellspring.
Below are a selection of sample images taken over the years, a CV detailing my freelance employment can be emailed on request
I truly believe that art has many therapeutic benefits on a personal level helping the individual gain self esteem,explore issues and enhance wellbeing. I also have witnessed over the years how engagement in art can instigate social change, connecting people and enabling people who are often overlooked by society to become visible.
Alongside freelance arts engagement work in previous years I have supplemented my income with part-time employment within colleges as a learning mentor and support worker to young adults with learning disabilities and additional educational needs.
In 2005 I gained a Certificate in Education which has enabled me to work as a sessional adult tutor. I design and deliver sessions and courses in basic art skills, collage making, drama, creative writing, wellbeing and nature arts. Since 2012 I have taught for Manchester Adult Education Service at Back on Track, Manchester, an education provider for adults from disadvantaged backgrounds. Over the years I have created and collated an extensive portfolio of creative activities that can be facilitated to groups with diverse abilities and needs.
I have a passion and on going interest in holistic wellbeing and art as therapy. In 2019 I gained qualified status as as Integrative Counsellor. It is my vision to use this qualification to develop my career in the future facilitating eco arts therapy, therapeutic story making and 1;1 creative counselling sessions.
I am insured with public liability / indemnity insurance and have an up to date D.B.S certificate. References can be obtained on request
many thanks for your interest