Born and raised in South Africa, Ashling McCarthy is a creative working in the field of social development and social change. Ashling began her career as a graphic designer, then transitioned into the craft development sector, living and working with rural women of craft. This led to a master’s degree in social anthropology and changed her life’s course. Her line of work has enabled a better understanding of, and interaction with, the complexities and inequalities prevalent in South African society.
In 2010, Ashling founded I Learn to Live – Ngifundela Ukuphila an education non-profit based in a rural community in Zululand. It provides children and youth with opportunities to expand their horizons, through relevant and creative programmes, encouraging problem-solving and personal accountability.
Ashling believes art is a powerful medium to convey social change messaging.