Staff Bios

Una Allen, Director

Una has an interdisciplinary background including a BA in Social Science, Diploma in Spiritual Direction (2010) and a Masters in Pastoral Theology (2014).  She worked for thirty years with the Probation Service in both Dublin and Galway.  While her work brought her into contact with those who perpetrated sexual abuse, her experiences also taught her about the physical, psychological and social consequences of abuse – for abuse survivors, their families, and their communities.  Una continues her involvement in this area with Athru, a multidisciplinary agency attached to HSE West, working with young people who exhibit sexually inappropriate behaviour.  A spiritual companion and retreat giver with a number of years’ experience, Una teaches on the Diploma in Spiritual Direction Course at the Jesuit Centre of Spirituality and Culture in Galway, and in Manresa Spirituality Centre in Dublin.  Una is married with four children.

 

Colleen Brown, Administration & Development Coordinator

Colleen has been studying and working in the areas of grief, conflict, trauma, spirituality, reconciliation, and the arts – for over twenty years.  Originally from San Francisco, Colleen has been in and out of Ireland and Northern Ireland since 1995, and here to stay since 2007.  Her background includes a MA Pastoral Ministry (Boston College), MPhil Ecumenical Studies (Trinity College Dublin), and a MA Mental Health Counselling & Arts Therapies (Lesley University), as well as extensive clinical and community-based experience with adults, youth and children in the US, Southern Africa, South America, Australia, Ireland and Northern Ireland.  Colleen is a trained therapist, spiritual director and facilitator. Her current therapeutic work is with children and their families who are dealing with the aftermath of traumatic death.  Colleen is married, with two young children.  She is also a member of the Corrymeela Community.