Lizette is a registered clinical psychologist and family therapist, who started her career as an occupational therapist. She has 30 years’ experience of working alongside people facing mental and physical health challenges, first in South Africa and later in the UK National Health Service. More recently she has moved to academia and lectures in clinical psychology at University of Hertfordshire.
At the University of Hertfordshire Lizette has pursued a number of research areas, what someone once called a ‘spiderweb’ of interests, which includes, housing and experiences of homelessness, parenting within the context of experiences of psychological distress, experiences of families where children have been taken into care; and diversity within the profession of clinical psychology. What binds these areas together is a commitment to social justice and inclusion.
Lizette’s current passion is for re-humanising of helping relationships. A personal, kind connection between practitioners and those meeting with us is constantly challenged and eroded by the bureaucratization of services, the manualization of help, constant under-resourcing of health, social care and education, and austerity – this is demoralising and dehumanizing to both practitioners and those who consult with us. Lizette is committed to research that highlights the impact of current practices and identify and promote counter-practices.
Lizette lives in Hertfordshire, with her partner Pieter, and their teenage sons Jacques and Liam. She treasures long walks in woodlands or by the sea, time with friends, books, and visits to her country of birth, South Africa.