Meet Our Team

Read about our dedicated Team

Ann-Marie Ireland

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Mary Burke

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Margaret Foley

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Paula Byrne

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Breathing Space Ireland

Meet Our Team

Ann Marie Ireland

Introduction

I believe that the school is a human community where pupils, students, teachers, school leaders, staff and parents can thrive and flourish.

Over the course of almost 9 years, I have watched teachers and school leaders be transformed simply by adopting some simple, practical changes in their personal and professional life. It really is amazing what the simple every day practices can accomplish. Setting up a Breathing Space for them to do that; whether it’s been in a busy school, an education centre, a conference or retreat, has been an absolute joy. It is not about the stress that we endure, but rather how we respond to it that matters most.

What I have been up to

Ann-Marie is a motivational speaker, published professional author and facilitator of courses in self-care, renewal and mindfulness.

She has worked in education for over 16 years and holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Education and a BA degree in Humanities (Psychology, Philosophy, Sociology & Religious Studies).

She has worked as a primary school teacher since 2004. She is passionate about living mindfully and working with others in the area of self-care and self-awareness in order to create more connections, along with cultivating a greater sense of compassion, empathy, gratitude and joy in daily living. She believes that filling your own ‘well’ of energy every day can improve your life and the lives of those around you in subtle but powerful ways.

Ann-Marie is currently conducting studies in the area of teacher self-awareness and self-actualisation as part of a research masters.

Achievements

Ann-Marie:

  • has successfully designed and facilitated her own workshops and courses in this area nationwide for over 8 years when she created her company‘ChillOut Ireland.
  • holds a Professional Certificate in the Therapeutic Use of Mindfulness(IICP)
  • created Department of Education approved courses for teachers (Well-Being, Self-Care and Renewal for the Primary Teacher) and has also developed an online programme for primary teachers (Dept. of Education approved) which has been hugely successful and connects with teachers nationwide
  • travels to schools and works directly with teachers, school leaders andSNAs (Special Needs Assistants)
  • has worked with teenagers and young children in this area for many years,along with bringing mindfulness and well-being practices into her own classroom
  • has also worked closely with parents through workshops and courses, along with creating a well-being programme for her own school
  • writes for RTE Radio Junior
  • writes for Laya Healthcare’s highly acclaimed ‘Super Troopers Programme;’ a health homework programme for primary school children
  • recently appeared on Ireland AM representing Laya Healthcare, along with representing their research on radio stations around the country
  • has also facilitated workshops in Laya Healthcare headquarters for staff there
  • has recently authored the book ‘Tabhair Aire Duit Féin,’ published by CoisLife Publications, as Gaeilge bringing mindfulness and well-being practices to children and young people
  • authored the mindfulness courses for the brand new App FNY (Fab NewYou) which has just been released in the iTunes Store
  • has given talks and facilitated workshops for IPPN (Dublin), The TeachingCouncil of Ireland, ATECI, the NIPT, the RTAI, the NCCA, the PDA, theINTO and various education centres and schools throughout the country
  • has also spoken at various conferences nationwide, including the Mental Health Summit (Aviva Stadium) 2017 and the BEO Well-Being Event inCo. Mayo with Doireann and Aoibhin Garrihy
  • has worked with The Irish Cancer Society at their national conference inSeptember, along with speaking at the highly acclaimed ‘SoulSpace’ in ClareGalway.
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Mary Burke

Introduction
Hello I’m Mary, In my career I’ve observed that the greatest change in life comes from taking just a small step in the right direction. Being in the right frame of mind, coming from the right heart intention creates profound breakthroughs. Kindness, respect, empathy, resilience and our ability to self-regulate our emotions are key personal qualities that can be fostered in our children, our schools and our communities, that can create lasting change for a new generation. Many new skills, methodologies and psychology are available to us now to help effect this as a lasting change. We can empower our students, their families, their schools and greater communities to live a more abundant, happy and peaceful life.
What I have been up to

Mary has over eighteen years class-based teaching experience and is registered with the Teaching Council of Ireland. She qualified with a B.A. Degree in English and Geography and a Higher Diploma in Education from the National University of Ireland Maynooth. She holds a Professional Certification in Mindfulness (Irish Mindfulness Institute), a Professional Practitioners Certification in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (I.I.C.P), a Diploma in Mind Coaching (I.N.L.P.) and is a Licenced Master Practitioner of Neuro-Linguistics (I.N.L.P). Mary also holds Executive and Life Coaching Certifications and is a qualified Speech and Drama Teacher. She is a fully qualified I.E.T Practitioner.

Whilst teaching, Mary held a post of responsibility in Pastoral Care - focusing on supporting students on academic achievement and life skills programmes and developing school and parenting programmes for schools, parents and guardians in their roles as co-educators. She has also worked in Student Counselling and Support Services for LMETB, along with working with Learning Support Teams and delivering PLC Childcare Courses for LWETB.
Achievements
Mary has mentored students in writing two National Award-winning plays with themes of physical and mental health, along with contributing to published articles relating to Children and their wellbeing with Business Psychologist Dr. E. Deevy: The Influence of Language in Recessionary times- A Resilient Response.

She has also developed and delivered Programmes and Workshops nationwide, including: Mindfulness, Emotional Intelligence and Wellness Programmes in Secondary schools in Dublin, Meath, Kildare and Sligo

Facilitator of Student/Staff Workshops with ChillOut Ireland Courses for Family Resource Centres and Women’s Groups in Kildare, Meath and Offaly delivering programmes in Mindfulness, Stress and Anxiety, Personal Development, Assertiveness and Anger Management Programmes Established and facilitated Writer’s Workshops
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Margaret Foley

Introduction
Hello I’m Margaret….. My journey of learning to value my health and wellbeing ultimately centres around engaging in daily self- care practices. Life is a precious gift. Engaging in simple self - care activities regularly can contribute greatly to leading a healthy, happy and fulfilled life. I am most passionate about educating and leading others to develop their own self–care routines. Through my work as a primary school teacher and as a PDST (Professional Development Services for Teachers) Health & Wellbeing advisor, I have seen the positive effect on children, parents and fellow teachers alike that implementing simple practices of movement, eating nutritiously and being mindful can have.
What I have been up to
Margaret has worked a mainstream classroom teacher since 2006. She holds a Bachelor of Education Degree. Currently Margaret is seconded to the (PDST) where she is an advisor on the Health & Wellbeing team. Margaret’s passion to educate and provide opportunities for children to extend their skills and knowledge in self-care lead her to create and run health promotion classes for children “Food & Fitness for Fun”. Margaret designed and lead this after - schools programme where children developed their movement skills through fun activities. In addition to this, children had an opportunity to create healthy snacks while discovering facts on nutrition.
Achievements
Margaret is always keen to develop her own knowledge in the area of wellbeing. Recently she obtained a certificate in ‘Mindfulness for Wellbeing in Schools’. Previously she was awarded a Distinction in ‘Advanced Nutrition and Health Promotion’ (Fetac Level 6). Margaret is an advocate for leading a healthy lifestyle. She participates in a wide variety of physical activities and to date has ran five marathons. Also she likes to cook and bake healthier foods to share with family and friends. Margaret experiences the powerful benefits of mindfulness daily through meditation and mindful breathing
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Paula Byrne

Introduction
Paula completed a B.A. in French and History before undertaking a P.G.C.E. in Primary Teaching. She has ten years of experience teaching in a mainstream school setting and is currently in her third year of teaching in a special school for children with severe and profound needs. Paula has been involved with Laois Education Centre and Tralee Education centre in the past delivering both evening workshops and summer courses as an Aistear tutor/facilitator.
What I have been up to
Paula has a passion for dance and theatre and has choreographed some local productions. In 20011 she commenced an M.A. in Dance which resulted a research project based on the positive impact of creative movement on women’s well-being. This marked the beginning of her journey into mindfulness.
Achievements
Paula has attended summer and evening courses on the subject of mindfulness, meditation and well-being for teachers. She has further developed this interest by undertaking a one-day Mindful Movement workshop in 2015 and participated in MBSR (Mindful based stress reduction) for self-development in 2016 and also a 3-day workshop in the Therapeutic use of Mindfulness.
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Breathing Space Ireland

Contact

  • Tel: 086-3342311
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