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About us

Kathi Connick

Head of services

Kathi has worked for people with disabilities for 32 years, from the ground up, starting as a volunteer support worker. As her skills and aptitude became locally and nationally recognised, her career path gained momentum. She has had a wealth of experience in supporting people to move on from traditional hospital and residential care settings into their own homes in the community and is an expert in Community Bridge Building, supporting communities to recognise the gifts individuals can offer in order to be recognised and valued citizens. Qualifying as a creative therapist, specialising in music in 1999 (and managing day services in Derbyshire in order to pay her way through University), Kathi then went on to run specialist supported living services in Derbyshire and a Supported Employment and Social Firms initiative in Leicester.

Publication of “Valuing People” in 2001 gave her the permission to further the development of person centred approaches, firstly within the voluntary/independent sector, and then as a senior manager for Devon County Council Learning Disability services, working hard to ensure that the commissioning of services for people with learning disabilities became increasingly person centred, and driving the personalisation agenda. Kathi was also instrumental in the formation of the Learning Disability Health and Social Care Partnership in 2004.

She has skills and interests in many areas including the application of the Social model of disability to people with learning disabilities; Effects of learnt behaviour on pathology; Person centred planning and the evidence base for positive outcomes; PCP and commissioning changes and responses; Overcoming the barriers of SOVA in relation to gentle teaching and intensive interaction.

Kathi’s role includes being the “clinical lead” for services, offering support and advice to the teams in relation to their approach and also chairing regular team meetings. Kathi is also the main liaison with health and social care professionals, and family members.

Matthew Bowern

Business manager

Matthew originally trained as a Chef and worked in restaurants and hotels both here and abroad. This lead to a role in product development.

After 5 successfull years in product development, Matthew moved into a commercial role. This led to senior roles in several food manufacturing companies, laterly as Commercial Director working with Tesco.

Matthew developed and manages our Support Hive system and looks after our business interests, including wages and invoicing.

Jay Hadland

Operations manager

Jay began his career in social care over 20 years ago, working in mental health secure hospitals. He managed transition teams to assist individuals to return to their communities, rehousing them and building support teams around them to help their rehabilitation.

He has also Managed residential care homes, day services, supported living services and before joining Evolve was the area manager of Specialist Support Services for the largest social care company in the UK. He specialised in Autism, Mental Health, and Challenging Behaviour.

In his spare time, Jay is a fan of music, football and motorsport and enjoys extreme sports including skydiving and karting. He also breeds pigs and grows fruit and vegetables on a smallholding.

Jay is responsible for team member welfare, rotas, and the day to day running of the company.