Meet the Author
In her late forties, Vanessa trained in and started teaching English as a Foreign Language at Goldsmiths College, University of London. She developed a parallel line of work teaching English as a Second Language in Adult Education classes across several London boroughs at a time when classes of all kinds were easily accessible to all Londoners, both day and evening. She no longer had to earn her living as a secretary for which she had trained at sixteen.
In due course, she obtained an MA in Adult, Professional and Continuing Education and began to focus on Older Learners, her Dissertation featuring Care Homes. She added Adult Literacy to her teaching work. She went on to study the Teaching of Adults in Higher Education at Birkbeck College to deeply inform her last few years of practice.
Coinciding with retirement, it was necessary to become her mother’s carer in a country village in Dorset, entering the ‘field’ of Alzheimers. During a period of nearly fourteen years, the poet, artist and musician parts of her broke through bit by bit. At the end of this time, she was in her mid-seventies with bodies of work consisting of hundreds of poems, performances of her songs* and musical pieces, and a new line of artwork involving images on stones she calls sea life, with an eye on climate change.
With the support and expertise of the publisher, Inklemaker, Vanessa has now been able to publish Precious Work.
Precious Work is for
all front-line carers and medical staff, and other specialist workers who use this unusual guide, among whom are
community and social workers, architects, gardeners, trainees, curriculum advisers,
health and safety officers, building consultants, journalists, planners, podiatrists, receptionists, dieticians, librarians, building designers,
lecturers, civil servants, shareholders,
government inspectors, charity workers,
cleaners, cooks, legal representatives
* One of the songs on Vaness's CD - Sweet Osmington - recalls her mother's words of love for her father, whenever she looked at a pencil portrait hanging on the wall, while Vanessa was caring for her.