Originally from South Africa, Cathy has worked both in academic and practitioner settings. She joined Christian Aid in 2019 from Youth Link:NI, where she designed and piloted a peace-building education curriculum aimed at young people living in Northern Ireland/the North of Ireland.

Prior to that she worked as an independent consultant on peace-building research, as an online education manager at the University of Bradford, and in South Africa and Sri Lanka in peace-building and reconciliation. 

She holds a PhD from the Transitional Justice Institute and INCORE at Ulster University, and published Reconciliation and Building a Sustainable Peace: Competing Worldviews in South Africa and Beyond, a book on building a sustainable peace in culturally diverse societies.

Selected as a Rotary World Peace Fellow, Cathy also holds an MA in African Peace and Conflict Studies from the University of Bradford, and an MA in Theology from Ghana.