Patron of Praxis Care and Chairperson of Praxis Care Research Committee
Nevin developed an early interest in mental health at the age of 17 whilst working in the school holidays on...Read More
Nevin developed an early interest in mental health at the age of 17 whilst working in the school holidays on a psychiatric ward. He continued this interest over several years working across psychiatric and learning disability hospitals while he attended university to study psychology. This included a year’s placement in London, looking at various aspects of mental health. Following the completion of his degree, Nevin worked for the Simon Community Charity, setting up a 10 bed unit for homeless people, many of whom had mental health issues. The fact that there was a deficit of community services for this service user group led Nevin to set up the Mental Health Action Research Team in 1980. This was to carry out evidence based research to drive the development of mental health services in the community. The Mental Health Action Research Team was renamed Praxis and Nevin fulfilled the role of CEO for the organisation from 1981, establishing services for children and adults with mental ill health, learning disabilities and acquired brain injury across 4 jurisdictions.
Nevin then retired in 2019 to become Praxis Care’s Patron and the Chairperson of the Praxis Care Research Committee.
Professor Gavin Davidson
Professor of Social Care
Gavin Davidson is Professor of Social Care and the first Praxis Chair of Social Care at Queen’s University Belfast. Gavin...Read More
Gavin Davidson is Professor of Social Care and the first Praxis Chair of Social Care at Queen’s University Belfast. Gavin moved to Queen’s in 2008 after working for 12 years in mental health services, in the Northern Health and Social Care Trust, as a Community Mental Health Team social worker, out of hours Approved Social Worker, project manager and team leader in assertive outreach and rehabilitation.
His main research interests are in the area of mental health, specifically: the effectiveness of mental health services; the social determinants of mental health; human rights and mental health/mental capacity law; and the associations between adverse childhood experiences and mental health. He was appointed as the Praxis Chair at Queen’s in 2018 and his work with Praxis is focused on: ensuring Praxis Care’s services are evidence based; developing innovative and participatory approaches to research; evaluating the effectiveness of services; and identifying possible service developments to achieve the best possible outcomes for service users.
He is also the Queen's coordinator for the Northern Ireland Approved Social Worker Training Programme; and one of the social work representatives on the Department of Health's Reference Group for the Mental Capacity Act (Northern Ireland) 2016.
Coincidentally his first job, after qualifying as a social worker in 1995, was with Praxis Care in Kimberley House.
Head of Research
Paul works as Head of Research for Praxis Care where he has conducted a number of internal and externally contracted...Read More
Paul works as Head of Research for Praxis Care where he has conducted a number of internal and externally contracted research projects in the areas of supported living, employability, advocacy, supported decision making and transitions and outcomes for care leavers.
He also has interests in research methodology with a particular focus on reproducible research methods. Paul serves as a member of the editorial team of Research Matters magazine and enjoys blogging about social science. Prior to working for Praxis Care, Paul worked as a Research Officer for the Northern Ireland Association for the Care and Resettlement of Offenders (NIACRO). He is a nurse (adult) by profession and has worked in community and hospital settings. Paul is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and a Fellow of the Royal Anthropological Institute.
Dr. Anne Johnston
Anne works as a Research Officer for Praxis Care. Anne has previously worked as a Research Associate as part of...Read More
Anne works as a Research Officer for Praxis Care. Anne has previously worked as a Research Associate as part of the Children’s Sport Participation and Physical Activity (CSPPA) study – an all-island physical activity survey in children and young people after completing a PhD in physical activity and intellectual disability at Ulster University. Her PhD research involved development and testing of a school-based multi-component walking intervention for children with intellectual disabilities.