Cathy Hird, BSW, MSW, BEd

Community Research Associate

Holy Cross Catholic Secondary School

Cathy Hird is an educator with the London District Catholic School Board and has over twenty years of experience in violence prevention. Prior to entering the teaching profession, Cathy was a certified social worker with experience in the fields of child welfare, children’s mental health, and school social work. Since 1989, she has been actively involved in developing and implementing school-based violence prevention programs. Consultations are provided to school communities for training staff in violence awareness and evaluating violence prevention initiatives and plans. She is a recipient of two community awards for her contributions to violence prevention: The Francis Brennan Award (London Family Court Clinic) and Crime Stoppers Award (London and District Crime Stoppers Program).

Her current teaching assignment as a secondary teacher involves working with students with learning differences and at-risk youth. She engages actively in facilitating peer-support learning through the introduction of peer tutoring, peer mediation and peer helping. She serves as a Board of Director for two community agencies: St. Leonard’s Community Services - London Region and the Children’s Aid Society of London and Middlesex. Her connections with the Faculty of Education at Althouse College includes being a mentor for teachers enrolled in Additional Qualifications courses and participating in the Transition to Practice seminars for new teachers.

Her involvement with the Centre for Research on Violence Against Women and Children has included advisory roles on research projects and accessing research grants to evaluate the forms of interpersonal violence experienced by youth. Her current involvement in the Tools for Change project has allowed her to continue her area of interest in curriculum writing and evaluating violence prevention programs for use by educators in elementary and secondary schools.