Meet Our Team
Patricia Bray is the co founder of the North West Forum and is currently chairperson of the management committee. Patricia has been involved in human rights movement for over 30 years. During that time she has worked with disability action for 27 of those years as a policy officer and specialist on disability equality legislation including the public sector equality duties under Section 75 and the disability duties.
In addition to the expertise in the above areas she provides the logistical and business support to aid the North West Forums mission and objectives to protect and promote the human rights of disabled people. Patricia represents the North West Forum through a variety of networks and organisations.
- Disability Action Strategic Advisory Group
- The Equality Coalition Northern Ireland
- Foyle Down Syndrome Trust
- Northern Ireland Housing Executive Disability Forum
- North West Community Network
In the year 2000 I took part in choices training along with several others a few of us had the chance to join the North West forum of people with disabilities. So I was a committee member forom (2001 until the year 2014) and I was nominated to be an office bearer as the roal as treasure. To the present so at our AGM. in 2018 I Was electet vice chairperson. I Have all my computer skills eg clait Ndlc,ECDL,BUSSINESS AND ADMIN Leavel 2.
I am proud to be serving as Secretary on the Forum for the last two years.
Nurse Education Consultant retired (Nurse Tutor). Worked for 42 years in Health Service – Ward Sister, Midwife and went into education in 1980. I enjoyed seeing young people develop from novices to trained staff. I experienced hearing lossfrom age 40 approximately. Further it is ironic as a Ward Sister in ENT.
The hearing loss resulted in my having to leave my post as a Nurse Teacher due to teaching a large group of 40 or more. Also I had developed a right arm disability resulting in not being able to lift equipment etc.
There are challenges all the time with hearing loss and it does have a drastic effect on your lifestyle especially if you live alone.
Communication devices can help but if you are not technical like myself it is further isolating.
It is organisations like the North West Forum of People with Disabilities that offer help to people with disabilities.
I join The North West Forum of people with disabilities in 2000 after the Choices training which was held in Limavady. I been a committee member of the Forum from 2001 I became chairman in 2014 at the AGM. I attends regular meeting on behalf of the the Forum.
I am a member of IMTAC which advise the department of infrastructure on transport needs of a disabled person and older person. I have a mild form of Cerbral Pasly.
My receipt of the MBE was as a result of my longstanding services to those living with a disability in N Ireland. Coming from a rural background in Co Fermanagh (prior to the opportunities that mobile phones and social media now offer) my contribution was recognized in 2005. Over the years I have promoted Disabled people in a positive way by working For the Health Service and trying to do this in a rural area was extremely difficult due to poor roads and at the time my car which had tiller bar steering was the only way to get about bad health means I can no longer drive and have to rely on public transport which is limited in rural area.
I would hope that receipt of these awards by many individuals across N. Ireland will ensure that we get benefit and care support to live life as normal human beings and participate fully in civic society for the benefit of he whole Disabled community in N. Ireland.
NORTHWEST FORUM OF PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES COMMITTEE MEMBER PROFILE My name is Eileen Drumm BEM I began volunteering in the community sector 1990 as info officer for Fermanagh PHAB in early 90s I attended a conference in Leterkenny on the rights of people with disabilities a cross border event this lead to setting up Northwest Forum of People with Disabilities of which I am a founder member. In the late 90s after training I became a Community Facilitator and with the support of NWFOPWD I set up a disabled and non-disabled womens group called Women Making Waves (WMW) that was in 1999 and is now a support and lobbing group i am Peer Advocate Co-ordinator. I completed an ICT teaching diploma (JEB) in 2005 and so I became a Tutor. In 2007 I formed a committee and set up Shopmobility Enniskillen I am now a Director of this company.
As I have an interest in Drama I wrote a play called “Does she take sugar” dealing with patronising attitudes to disability in a fun way, there is also a video called “not much fun in the rain” this was a project I took leadership for WMW Two years ago I was honoured to become one of 20 community hero's, but if that a surprise, what a shock I got in 2016 when I was nominated for a BEM which I received in Hillsbrough in Sept 2016.
Tony O’Reilly has been a Human Rights activist in the disabled persons movement in Northern Ireland for over 30 years. He was a case worker and advocate for adults with learning disabilities in the 1980’s before undertaking undergraduate and post-graduate studies at Magee College, University of Ulster, and University of Limerick (1991-1997). From 1998 – 2003 Tony was the Development Officer with the North West Forum of People with Disabilities, founded in 1994 by people with disabilities, to promote the human rights and voice of disabled people in all aspects of political, economic, and social life in Northern Ireland. He is presently a member of the Northwest Forum Management Committee.
From 2003 - 2015 Tony was a Policy Officer with the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland with responsibility for disability matters including providing secretariat support to the Equality Commission and the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission with respect to their role as the Independent Mechanism for Northern Ireland (IMNI) responsible for monitoring the implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
Representing the Northwest Forum he was part of Disability Action’s Northern Ireland wide Delegation to meet with the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in Geneva during the periodic examination of UK’s progress on the implementation of the Convention in 2017. He is presently Co-chair of the Disability Employment Stakeholder Forum alongside the Department for Communities, one of number of roles he has responsibilities for on behalf of the Northwest Forum.
Paul Gormley is a Committee Member with the North West Forum for People with Disabilities. He has a disability and tutors with Rutledge Training.
Paul is a qualified Teacher in ICT and has been involved in the past with focus groups and forums in relation to education and training provision in Northern Ireland for people with disabilities.
I am partially sighted, have been for 30 years, since acquiring a brain injurey, as a result of a road traffic accident. Twelve years ago i got involved with The Cedar Foundation-an organisation to help rehabilitate people who have experienced brain injury or strokes.
This gives me the confidence to speak up, and advocate for disabled, people. This leads me to grt involved with RNIB six years ago, i have been actively involved since.
I hope to be able to help connect blind and partially sighted people, theough the new connect team, RNIB connect radio online. I am olso a committee member of IMTAC.