Meet the Team

Emma Gilchreest


Regional Programme Director, based in Maynooth University

Emma began her career in Zambia, addressing the barriers to girls accessing second-level education at FAWEZA (Forum for African Women Educationalists of Zambia).

During her time in Zambia she initiated the building of a SAFE house for girls who were experiencing danger walking to and from school every day. She used a community development approach to the project and that contributed to its success. The Zambian Ministry of General Education has now incorporated the SAFE house concept in its Revised National Education Policy.

When she returned to Ireland Emma took up post of Managing Director with the Offaly Traveller Movement. Emma led the movement through the most robust restructuring process of its history. This resulted in a thriving Travellers’ rights organisation today. Offaly Traveller Movement has many programmes responding to the needs of Travellers, in areas including:

  • Health
  • Mental health
  • Men’s health
  • Youth
  • Education
  • Enterprise

Emma co-designed and developed the Travelling to Well-being Service, which was first funded for a three-year pilot and was then taken on by the HSE in 2016.

Emma holds a BA in Humanities and a Masters in Equality Studies. She is passionate about human rights and access to meaningful and appropriate services.

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