Dawn first entered the caring professions in 1983 as a residential care worker. She qualified as a professional social worker in 1990 and worked in the statutory Children and Families sector. During this time, she became a practice teacher and subsequently managed a Duty and Assessment Team. Dawn later went on to work within the voluntary sector (primarily within the fields of domestic violence and as a regional manager developing services for carers), and then in the education sector (as a Research Fellow at Warwick University). Latterly, she has been involved within the Survivor Movement as a service user. She now works as the MA Programme Director and as a Lecturer on the BA and MA qualifying Social Work programmes at the University of Birmingham. She also coordinates and curates the Department of Social Policy and Social Work's Survivor Arts Project and Exhibition.
Matka, E., River, D., Littlechild, R. and Powell, T. (Dec 2009), Involving Service Users and Carers in Admissions for Courses in Social Work and Clinical Psychology: cross-disciplinary comparisons of practices at the University of Birmingham. British Journal of Social Work, advanced online access 13 Dec 2009.
Humphreys, C., Regan, L., River, D. and Thiara, R.K. (2005) Domestic Violence and Substance Use: Tackling Complexity British Journal of Social Work 35, 1303-1320
Humphreys, C., Regan, C., River, D. and Thiara, R.K. (2004) "Mind the Gap: Domestic Violence and Substance Misuse Services" Interim Report, Home Office and Greater London Authority (Research Report).
River, D (2008), Review of 'Making an Impact: Children and Domestic Violence: A Reader Second Edition', in Journal of Social Welfare and Family LawVol. 30 Issue 3 pp 270-272.