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      Research Interests

      My background is in psychology and counselling, and my research largely focuses on children and young people's rights and participation. I am an active member of the Maternal and Child Health research theme at the School of Nursing and Midwifery were my work focuses on relationships, sexual health, gender and parenting in adolescents' lives, and The Centre for Children’s Rights at Queen’s which has pioneered an innovative methodology for conducting rights-based participatory research with children and young people. I have extensive practical experience of applying this methodology with children and young people in my research in diverse social and geographical contexts, and a particular interest in facilitating the co-production of contextually relevant health and education interventions.

      A further practical application of this methodology is the production of youth-friendly versions of legal texts, research documents and reports etc., to make information accessible to children and young people, and the development of innovative public dissemination and engagement strategies. This work has included child-friendly versions of the Council of Europe’s Lanzarote Convention on child sexual exploitation - ‘Tell Someone You Trust’; the EU Recommendation on Investing in Children, for Eurochild; a sexual health education animation co-produced with young incarcerated men within the Northern Ireland Prison Service; and the UN Special Rapporteur report (2017) on children’s rights and the environment, for The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.

      Current projects include: the development of a ‘Relationships and Future Fatherhood’ programme with young incarcerated men, funded by the Medical Research Council; a study of disabled children’s experience of their digital rights for the Council of Europe; and, a consultation with children in the five UN regions in a project to develop a set of indicators for monitoring the implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, led by GlobalChild. 

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      Contribution to conference papers, events and activities

      ID: 18268281