Cath started as a Practice Learning and Development Officer in December 2018 with Learning Network West and remains an active practice teacher. Cath has 15 years of experience as a local authority social worker and has a good knowledge of the social service sector through working in community care, hospital social work, substance misuse, emergency social work services and latterly justice services.
Within these areas, Cath championed specific interests. She completed MSW research on alcohol misuse and older adults having noticed gaps in service. Working with others, Cath tried to improve these gaps and published an article linking the value of research to practice improvement (Practice: Social Work in Action-https://strathprints.strath.ac.uk). This work was also highlighted as an example of effective leadership amongst front line practitioners (Stevenson, H in Van Zwanverg, Z, 2009).
Cath has delivered the Treatment Process Model in substance misuse services using strengths based psycho-social interventions designed to promote individual recovery. In her most recent social work post within justice services, Cath championed trauma-informed practice. This included guest lecturing to students highlighting the value for service users of using a trauma-informed mindful approach in practice.
Cath is a strong advocator for practice education and as a practitioner was involved in local authority practice teaching forums, recognising the value of peer support and shared learning. Cath is motivated to support practice teachers to have the support and resources to be able to practice teach effectively. This includes her role within Learning Network West in developing rolling workshop programmes for practice teachers/ link workers, supporting independent practice teachers and also in becoming a SCOPT Trustee.