Kathi has worked for people with disabilities for 20 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.