As volunteers, we dedicate our free time to the Limerick Mental Health Association and we are all passionate about helping others to remain well and maintain positive mental health.
Dr. Jennifer McMahon is Chairperson of the Limerick Mental Health Association (LMHA) and is a lecturer in Psychology of Education at University of Limerick. She has worked in the area of mental health for over a decade and has been instrumental in advancing the recovery approach to mental health across the Mid-West. She has been a lead partner in the Recovery and Reconnect (RnR) project which brought WRAP (Wellness, Recovery Action Plan) and peer advocacy training to Limerick, a steering committee member of the Mid-West Advancing Recovery in Ireland (ARI) which developed a blueprint for transformation of the mental health services and has taken a lead role in the development of a Recovery College in the Mid-West, funded by the Genio trust.
She has a particular interest in youth mental health and worked as a researcher for Jigsaw, the National Centre for Youth Mental Health and then as a project manager responsible for bringing the Jigsaw service to Limerick. She is also very interested in schools as sites of mental health promotion and in particular the pivotal role of school staff as supportive adults to young people.
Jennifer is passionate about empowering young people and adults to take control of their mental health and to play a central role in the development and implementation of mental health services and mental health promotion.
Deborah O'Kane is Secretary of Limerick Mental Health Association and has been on the Board since March 2016.
She is an Associate Director in the compliance and reporting group at Ernst and Young (EY) and has been with the firm since 2014, Deborah acts as a corporate governance subject matter expert for EY and has a particular interest in non-profit governance.
She has held Company Secretary and Compliance Advisor roles at various international law and consultancy firms in Bermuda, South Africa and Ireland.
Deborah holds a Bachelor of Laws degree from the National University of Ireland, Galway and is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators.
Patrick Fitzgerald joined the board of LMHA in November 2015. He is active in the mental health scene and has just finished his Ba(Hons) in Counselling and Psychotherapy. Patrick is a passionate and active member of the community in Limerick and brings enthusiasm and determination to his numerous projects to date which include working with Schools, Gardaí, Family Resource Centres, Colleges and other mental health organisations running mental health events.
Patrick firmly believes that the knowledge base of mental health as well as what different organisations do needs to be increased both locally and on a national level. Currently undertaking a research masters around the areas of suicide and rural isolation. Patrick hopes that through the work of Limerick Mental Health Association a vision of a brighter future can be achieved.
Michelle O'Connor joined the board of LMHA in January 2016. Mental health has been a passion of Michelle's for many years since completing her degree in Applied Social Studies in Social Care and a Masters by research in Loss and Grief in LIT. Michelle feels it is important to acknowledge and discuss the difficulties that all people go through across the spectrum of mental health.
Michelle is from Limerick and is very proud of the city and the collaborative space Limerick holds for all.
Nicola Le Gear
Nicola joined the board in January 2017. She has over 10 years expertise in online user experience. Her aim is to make Limerick Mental Health's digital presence as easy to use and accessible as possible. She serves as a trusted advisor to the board on all matters relating to Digital, including defining and leading the Digital Strategic Plan.
Nicola started volunteering with Limerick Mental Health Association in June 2016. She was responsible for the design, development and launch of www.limerickmentalhealth.ie in September 2016.
Nicola wanted to give to a charity that meant something to her. She wanted to use her vast professional experience to help those coping with mental health. As we all know mental health touches everyone, it is Nicola's goal to make Limerick Mental Health Association accessible to those that need it when they need it.
Tina represents the users of the LMHA’s services on the Board of Management. She first came across LMHA in Spring 2015, when she attended a Wellness Recovery Action Planning course held in their Le Chéile centre on Sexton St. The atmosphere in Le Chéile is welcoming and safe for those with mental health issues, even when all the rest of the world seems cold.
Tina assists where she can in the organisation and management tasks carried out by the LMHA Board of Management. She welcomes any feedback or communication from other users of LMHA’s services so that she can raise these issues at the monthly Board meetings.