Claudette Pretorius - ESR 4, ReachOut Ireland
Although I was originally born in Johannesburg, South Africa, I had the life changing opportunity to grow up in Botswana. The opportunity to grow up in another country allowed me to make friends from all over the world, develop a keen sense of adventure but also gave me an understanding for the importance of learning from those around you.
My interest in working with youth and promoting their mental health started through my work for non-profit organisation in South Africa that aimed to provide developmental resources for youth living in rural settings. This motivated me to become a registered counselling psychologist. I have worked with youth across a number of settings including in higher education.
With this background in mind, my current research will focus on developing an online referral system that will direct young people to the appropriate service based on their current concerns. This will build on information and resources already available through ReachOut Ireland, where I will be based as TEAM ITN early stage researcher.
I am excited about the opportunity to learn and grow in a new setting and develop a network with other professionals interested in supporting youth mental health through technology.