Helen Culhane

CEO

Helen’s work over the years has allowed her to build up a wealth of experience in working with children and adults. She has explored and examined many examples of good practice in relation to services for children and young people experiencing loss and grief.

In 2006, she had direct contact with children’s bereavement services in Australia, and especially with the National Centre for Childhood Grief (also known as The Friend’s Place) which is based in Sydney.

Helen worked for thirteen years as a social worker with TUSLA in the area Child Protection and Child Psychiatry. In 1991, she obtained an advanced diploma in child protection from Trinity College.

In 2001, Helen moved as Senior Social Worker to Milford Care Centre where she set up and facilitated a group work support programme for bereaved children.

Helen qualified as a Counsellor and Psychotherapist with the Dublin Counselling Centre in 2015.
Email: info@childrensgriefcentre.ie

Theresa Kavanagh

Senior Support Worker

Theresa joined the Children’s Grief Centre in 2014 as a Volunteer, before working as a trainee Psychotherapist in the Student Counselling Service at the University of Limerick, in 2016. She was delighted to return to the Children’s Grief Centre in June 2018 joining the team as a full-time Support Worker.

Theresa has worked with children and young people over the past 25 years – beginning her professional life as a nurse in St. James’ Hospital, Dublin and then moving onto Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin, Harcourt St. Children’s Hospital and Temple St. Children’s Hospital.

Having an interest in behaviour as language, and early child development, Theresa obtained a degree in Psychology.

Theresa’s focus is on the relationship with the child/young person and she offers a gentle and developmentally appropriate approach to help them talk about their experiences and feelings.

Theresa works with children through play and creative media and she is a strong believer in empowering the voice of the child whilst working within the context of the family. She passionately believes in advocating for, and promoting the rights of, children and young people.

Email: theresakavanagh@childrensgriefcentre.ie

Carol Fitz-Gough

Fundraising Assistant

 

Carol joined the Children’s Grief Centre in 2018 as a volunteer and now works as part time Fundraising Assistant.

As part of the fundraising team her role involves communication with our sponsors and corporate partnerships, administrative support to our Financial Officer and helping to
organise and co-ordinate events while raising awareness of the work we do at the Children’s Grief Centre.

Since joining the team Carol has always been overwhelmed and truly grateful for the generosity, warmth, and kindness of the people within our community and nationwide that help us to support Children and young people who have experienced loss.

Ciara Ni Nuallain

Part-time Support Worker

Ciara qualified with an MA in Humanistic and Integrative Psychotherapy in 2016.

During her development as a Psychotherapist, she has been a facilitator of various support groups and has also facilitated WRAP groups (Wellness Recovery Action Planning) with Le Chéile.  She is engaging in her professional training to specialise in play and creative approaches.  Ciara is also undertaking a Postgraduate Diploma in Play Therapy and a Masters in Creative Psychotherapy (Humanistic and Integrative Modality).

Ciara works from a child-centred/person-centred approach and her main aim is to be empathetic, understanding and present to the child’s needs.  She meets the child where they are at and offers support as they work through their difficult feelings and emotions.

Fiona Sullivan

Finance Officer

Fiona joined the Children’s Grief Centre team in 2020 having worked as a Chartered Accountant for 25 years.  As she has enjoyed various forms of volunteering and fundraising in the past, she was delighted to be able to combine her finance & accountancy experience with working in an altruistic organisation.  She finds it very fulfilling to see the comfort and support that is given to children and young people who are going through a tough period in their lives.

Helen McInerney

Administrator – Part Time

Helen joined the Children’s Grief Centre team in 2018, as part time administrator. Her role involves general office administration, administration support and maintaining accounts. She has initial contact with the families and professionals who approach the charity, and also assists with the organising of key events.

Helen believes that the service the Children’s Grief Centre provides is a vital and necessary one. She wants every parent to know that when their child is suffering we are here to support.

Email: reception@childrensgriefcentre.ie
Tel: 087 985 1733

Olive Foley

Ambassador to the Children’s Grief Centre

Olive Foley is the wife of the late Irish and Munster rugby player legend, Anthony Foley.

Olive’s experience has shown her the importance and value of family and community. She believes they are truly worth celebrating – because it is they who are there for you when you need it most. Through her difficulties she has seen family at its best: her own family, the sporting family, the family of community and friends.

Olive is a former banker but is now working closely with The Children’s Grief Centre Limerick in her role as Ambassador.

Ita Hannan

Volunteer Support Worker

Ita is a Mater nurse, worked in the hospice as well as other hospitals during her nursing career.

She ran a preschool playgroup when her family were growing up. She then went on to train as a counsellor and psychotherapist.

She joined the HSE in 2000 specialising in the area of addiction counselling. Ita is very fulfilled her voluntary work with the children in the Childrens Grief Centre.

Mary Browne

Volunteer Support Worker

Mary Browne joined the Children’s Grief Centre in 2013 as a Volunteer Support Worker.

She is a Home Economics teacher and a Guidance Counsellor.

Throughout her time here at the Centre, Mary has seen many children and greatly enjoys her work.

Beryl Carswell

Volunteer Support Worker

Beryl began her career as a paediatric nurse in Belfast and then Dublin.

She then moved into the area of early childhood education in Dublin.

On moving to Limerick, she worked for 20 years as an early childhood education practitioner presenting play activities for the pre-school child. She was very active in the Irish Pre-school Playgroups Association, now Early Childhood Ireland.

Her area of interest moved again into healthcare, and employment followed as a hospital play specialist in the Children’s Ark Unit, University Hospital Limerick. In this role, she facilitated therapeutic play facilities to support babies, children and young people in coping with their hospital experience.

During this time, she met amazing children/young people (and their families), who were faced with short/long term admissions in the hospital.

On retirement, Beryl welcomed the opportunity to join Helen’s team as a support worker. She is delighted to be a part of the Children’s Grief Centre, with its hopes and vision into the future.

Beryl is a long time member and presently a board member of the charitable organization, Children in Hospital Ireland, Sandyford, Dublin.

Our Support Workers and Volunteers

Our Centre offers the skill, caring compassion and dedication of our full team of Support Workers and Volunteers.