Guidance Practitioner MA (Hons)
The starting point for my career – an MA (Hons) in Psychology – was chosen based on an intense curiosity of human behaviour and with a with a view to becoming a psychologist in the prison service. Specialising in cognitive, social and developmental psychology, I believe that whilst structural factors play a part in the development of negative patterns of behaviour, one-to-one personal relationships hold the key to all understanding and healing.
I spent 15 years researching and developing behaviour change projects with NHS Health Scotland; Police Scotland; Scottish Prison Service; the Scottish Government and Rape Crisis Scotland, working with ‘at risk’ groups to identify the behavioural hooks which could challenge destructive lifestyles and support harm reduction projects. This covered a wide variety of areas including knife crime; sexual violence; adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse; drugs; alcohol; child sexual exploitation; gun crime and domestic abuse.
My current projects are focused on the advocacy of constructive policies of crime prevention and rehabilitation, with the aim of aiding reintegration, reducing and minimising the likelihood of re-offending behaviour.
As a coach and mentor, I work on a group and individual basis with a group of vulnerable people, including those with drug and alcohol dependencies; and mental health difficulties. All work is underpinned by the (re)building of confidence in their own abilities, learning to trust their own judgement and doing so in a way which is true to her, him or their self. The foundations of this often stem from a creative understanding of their own likes and dislikes, in order to find a place of solace from which to enable emotional healing.