Over almost 20 years in the museums and heritage sector, I have developed an innovative approach to community engagement and participation, recognised by the Heritage Lottery Fund and Community Relations Council as a model for best practice. I have a high level of experience in working with diverse community groups, including delivering peace and reconciliation initiatives. I have developed and delivered learning resources and programmes for a wide variety of audiences, including exhibitions, workshops, heritage trails, primary and secondary curriculum resources, community archives and online resources.
With an honours degree in fine art and postgraduate degrees in cultural studies and cultural geography, I work in a number of fields, including research, writing and visual art practice. I have published writing in books, academic journals, artists’ publications and exhibition catalogues. I have been involved as a cultural geographer, and curator, in several visual art projects with exhibition outcomes. I also practise as an artist. The central concern of my research, writing and art practices is the relationship between identity and place.
I blend a background in arts and heritage facilitation with my work in counselling and issue-based practice, drawing from experience in the arts, education and charity sectors over the last 10 years. I design and deliver workshops, retreats and short courses, and have taught, mentored and tutored in education, community and private sector settings. I provide therapeutic spaces for people to explore and process individual and group issues at a range of levels, which includes one-to-one counselling and issue-based group work. These sessions and courses aim to support people to improve their mental and emotional health and to discover more about themselves and their communities. My work is trauma-informed and I specialise in supporting safe exploration of the impact of both community and domestic trauma.
I am an extremely passionate, creative, determined employee and an advocate of the arts in Northern Ireland. As evidenced by my career history thus far I have extensive experience working as a Producer, Project Manager, Events Manager and Programmer, primarily across the theatre sector but also within the visual arts and film / TV sectors over the past decade. I bring with me a wealth of knowledge, an extensive skillset as well as a wide-reaching network of contacts across the arts industry.