Brief Biography

June 20, 2007 at 8:15 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 9 Comments

I am a native of Castlebar, Co Mayo. On my father’s side, I can trace my roots in Mayo back through many generations. A great-granduncle of mine was James Daly who was editor of the Cannaught Telegraph and one of the founders of the Land League in Mayo. Daly chaired the famous Irishtown meeting in 1879.

I am a graduate of UCG with a degree in Political Science and Legal Science in 1985. I completed a PhD in sociology in NUI Galway in 2004. I also studied philosophy for a year (1986-87) in Milltown Institute of Philosophy and Theology.

From 1987 to 1992 I worked as a care worker in Dublin, particularly with travellers and in Mountjoy prison. I was a volunteer full-time worker with Dublin Simon community and lived in a community of homeless people on Sean MacDermott Street for thirteen months in 1988 and 1989. I was project leader for a new Simon residential unit on Island Street from 1989 to 1992 and was deputy project leader of the Simon Night Shelter on Usher’s Island. That was challenging work and I trace nearly all that I have learned and the character that I am to those experiences.

Later I worked as a child-care worker in Tullow, Co. Carlow and in Tralee, Co. Kerry. In Tullow, I was a project leader on a project where four young people from Dublin lived with my young family and me on a 12-acre farm. The concept was to provide the young people with respite care and training in personal responsibility.

I began teaching in the IT, Tralee from 1997 and returned to Castlebar in 1999 to teach in the GMIT. I lecture in social care on our degree programme in Applied Social Studies.

I was a researcher with the Environmental Change Institute, NUIG from 2000 to 2003. I am Chairperson of Mayo Citizens Information Service and am a Director of FEASTA and Mayo Intercultural Action.

From the summer of 2005 I was spokesperson for the Rossport Five and subsequently acted as spokesperson for the Shell to Sea campaign until early 2007. I have written widely on the issue of the Corrib gas project and also on wider issues of sustainability and democracy.

I edited a book called The Rossport Five: Our Story (2006) and am the author of Compassionate Activism: An Exploration of Integral Social Care.



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  1. […] panel this year is Rory Bremner look-alike and tireless articulator for the Shell to Sea campaign Dr. Mark Garavan of NUI […]

  2. […] panel this year is Rory Bremner look-alike and tireless articulator for the Shell to Sea campaign Dr. Mark Garavan of NUI […]

  3. 1. Do you have an Irish version of your website?

    2. What are your policies on the promotion of the Irish language and Irish goods?

    B. Murphy.

  4. If only I had a nickel for every time I came to… Amazing read.

  5. Very great article! Honest..

  6. Hi Mark,

    I’m with Aeveen’s group; we visited Mayo 2 weeks ago. I’m interested in doing my ISP in Mayo re the Corrib Gas Project. Can I please get an email address for you? I have some questions that I’d love for you to answer. My email is


    Hope to hear from you soon,

    • Sameen,
      thanks for the email. This system on my blog doesn’t really work so could you email me again at: and I’ll be able to read your full email.
      Best wishes,

  7. Thanks Mark for a very interesting day at the Abbey Hotel, Roscommon. Have not enjoyed a CPD In-service so much in 18 years. Thanks again and have lovely & peaceful Christmas.


    Donal J Farrell
    VTOS Co-Ordinator
    Boyle VTOS Centre

    • Hi Donal,
      Thanks for that message. i appreciate it. Have a good Christmas break.
      Best wishes,

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