Angela Kirwin grew up in Manchester. One of her earliest childhood memories is having a placard balanced on her lap, being wheeled along in her pushchair, as her mum protested the closure of the local children’s hospital. Along with her mum and sister, she became a teenage carer for her grandmother who suffered with dementia. It was this experience that propelled her, aged 16, into her first social care job. She was tasked with supporting a younger wheelchair user.
From there, she found that her passion lay in working with people. Her jobs included supporting young people not in education, employment or training (NEETs) to find apprenticeships, running English Literature classes for teenagers deemed too disruptive for the mainstream classroom and, of course, caring for her grandma as she deteriorated.
Angela received the Educational Maintenance Allowance (EMA) to attend sixth form college and then secured a bursary to study Politics & Modern History at The University of Manchester. She went onto to gain an MSc in Social Work from The University of Bristol, before beginning to work within the mental health and substance misuse fields in the community.
In this role, she went behind prison walls for the first time and a move to London followed. From prison, she ran Through the Gate services, Dual Diagnosis services and supported Anger Management and Hearing Voices groups. She guest lectured on these topics at The University of Bristol.
Angela received a Winston Churchill Memorial Trust Fellowship that allowed her to travel to Norway and America to research their criminal justice and prison systems.
She left social care at the end of 2016 to focus on writing. She is represented by Literary Agent Matilda Forbes-Watson at WME and her debut is due to be published with Orion on May 26th 2022.