Our wonderful Global Education Committee are all returned international volunteers. The Global Citizen Award has been developed by EIL Intercultural Learning’s Global Education Committee as a Development Education initiative. The EIL Global Education Committee is made up of a core group of previous international volunteers with a passion for Development Education. Members of the Global Education Committee support the Award and its participants through mentorship, resources, events and workshops.
Jorge Ruiz Villasante
Jorge has been a part of the Global Education Committee (GEC) over the last few years! His skills in photography alone have allowed us to share the work of the GEC with people all over the world through videos, social media and exhibitions.
Jorge is a photographer and educator with a passion for Development and Global Issues. His passion for sharing his knowledge with others is a great attribute to the Committee. Jorge has extensive volunteer experience with EIL, being on volunteer placements in India and South Africa. He piloted the Gold International Volunteer Award and his since been awarded the Gold Global Citizen Award three times!
Órla has been a member of the committee since 2015. She travelled to South Africa as part of EIL's Global Awareness Programme, to volunteer with an NGO which supported people living with HIV, in 2014. She has received the Gold GCA.
Órla is a journalist and photographer with an interest in current affairs, gender equality and social justice issues. She is a recipient of the Mary Raftery Journalism Fund and the Simon Cumbers Media Fund, through which she explored women's rights issues in Kenya in 2019.
Her favourite Sustainable Development Goal is SDG5: Gender Equality. She believes gender equality and female empowerment are essential, and something we should all work towards.
Aleks joined the committee as she wanted to be part of a great team that does things that matter in the world. She was a youth café volunteer then a children youth leader in Foróige. Aleks traveled to Vietnam on an EIL Explore Award where she spent two months teaching English.
Aleks has participated in EIL network weekends and is eager to do more awareness raising activities. Aleks is a keen and talented photographer!
Andrew is from Sligo and is currently studying on his Erasmus year in Freiburg, Germany. He went to Ecuador with EIL on a cultural exchange in 2015, and has been volunteering with them ever since. He is passionate about world travel, global education and development. Andrew's favourite SDG is Quality Education - he believes that the path to solving many of the world's problems begins with education! In his spare time Andrew likes to learn languages, run and brew coffee.
Catherine is currently studying Corporate Law in NUI Galway and is an active member of the NUI Galway Students' Union and the Union of Students in Ireland. Catherine has traveled to the Governors Institute Vermont with EIL and she decided to further her involvement by volunteering abroad in Guatemala with EIL.
Catherine has a unique perspective on the work of EIL from having been both a host family and a host participant, to receiving a travel award and to being an interviewer for Explore applicants. Catherine understands engagement and development and these are the main goals she works towards.
Eniola (or Enny as everyone calls her) was born in Nigeria, raised in Waterford and currently works as a nurse in Dublin. She is super bubbly, very chatty and always with a smile. Her eight week volunteering experience in Mutmandek orphanage in Thailand was nothing but pleasant and mesmerising. Speaking about this experience, she says "it taught me so much and has given me a new insight in ways that I cannot even begin to express myself".
She was very pleased of the work that she was involved with, bringing the children to the hospital, accompanying them to their therapy sessions, bringing them to get their vaccinations or simply bringing them to the park. Enny was awarded the Silver Global Citizen Award in 2016 for her actions on return in Ireland.
Giulia Di Capua
Giulia is an Italian girl living in Ireland since 2013. At 17 she took part in an exchange program in Germany with an association called AFS. After her experience abroad she got involved in volunteering; from assisting young exchange students and their families through the experience with workshops and orientations, to organising local public events to raise awareness on intercultural learning and global citizenship.
Giulia joined the EIL volunteer Network in 2017 and has since been involved in different activities supporting the programs and the activities.
Jason is an Occupational Therapy student studying in Trinity College Dublin. He has an interest in human rights, leadership and social justice. Jason is passionate about volunteering as a youth work leader with Foróige. Jason has a huge interest in community development and has taken a leadership role in service projects on topics such as poverty, mental health and well-being and equality.
His experience with EIL Explore began in 2017 when he travelled to the Governor's Institute of Vermont (GIV) to attend a youth activism and current issues course. This experience allowed him to greatly improve his knowledge on global citizenship.
His favourite SDG is Quality Health and Well Being. In many parts of the world there are issues with safe and accessible healthcare which impacts on quality of life and health status. This SDG is important as it works towards a world where people from diverse backgrounds can live a healthier and happier life with the right resources and supports.
Chinedum believes in the power of Education and would like to empower others through his experiences while also learning from other members of the committee. As chair of The DCU Africa Society, Chinedum had to facilitate several events around education and culture.
He has also hosted and facilitated at several events, including the Dublin International Literature Festival. Chinedum has worked previously with migrants in Germany, youth in the Netherlands and volunteering with EIL in Mexico in 2017. Chinedum was awarded the Gold Global Citizen Award in 2018.
Liz has been involved with EIL since 2015. She started out facilitating orientations for AFS students and, over time, got more involved with the various departments in EIL. She did a secondary school year abroad to Panama with AFS in 2002/03. This life-changing experience sparked an interest in cultures, languages and travel. Liz has lived in the United States (home country), Panama, Brazil, Italy, France, South Korea, and now Ireland.
She has a Bachelor's degree in International Affairs and currently works in international development. She is passionate about global issues and social justice. In her free time she loves to cook, study languages, and promote zero-waste living.
Amanda first got involved with EIL in 2017 when she took part in the EIL Explore Global Awareness Programme focused on SDG 5 (Gender Equality) and spent the summer volunteering in a community centre supporting women in situations of street prostitution in Mexico City. She was already a feminist and advocate for social justice before this, but she came home with a whole new perspective and determination to end gender inequality. Since then, she served as a UN Youth Volunteer at UN Women in Viet Nam where she worked as a programme officer in the areas of gender equality in ethnic minorities and on the government’s response to violence against women and girls. She recently moved back to Dublin to take up the role of Policy and Communications Manager at Ruhama – Ireland’s only dedicated frontline NGO supporting women affected by prostitution and sex trafficking. She has seen how gender inequality and injustice affects us all from the global to local level and is passionate about global citizenship. Amanda speaks Spanish and German and holds an MA in Women, Gender and Society from UCD. She was awarded a Silver Global Citizen Award in May 2018.
Kathleen lives in the Garden of Ireland, county Wicklow. She got involved in EIL Explore after receiving a travel award to volunteer in Mexico working in the Children’s Library project of Barra de Potosi in the summer of 2018.
Upon her return to Ireland she quickly wanted to learn more about EIL and volunteered to take part in the readathon, selections and interviews for the 2019 volunteer awards.
She studied in Trinity College Dublin and is currently a student of University College Dublin. She has a background in IT, technology and Business Admin, public speaking and also in the DJ business. She is a Gold Global Citizen Award winner. She is an active volunteer with NLN Bray, UCD Mature Access and Eco UNESCO. She was invited to join the Global Education Committee (GEC) in 2019.
Kathleen likes reading, line dancing and walking with her dog in her spare time. While she likes to keep up with all the SDG’s she thinks the most important one is “Peace and Justice" and "Strong Institutions and Partnerships for the Goals" because all the other SDG’s have a much better chance of succeeding with these two in place.
Nikki was born and raised in Dublin and has been involved with EIL since 2015 when she travelled to Mexico the summer of 2015 to volunteer with various community projects and the following summer she volunteered in Thailand at the Wildflower Home for women and children. She has been involved with the GEC since January 2016, and chaired the committee from late 2017 to the start of 2019. She is currently acting in a consulting role with the GEC due to relocating to Australia.
Nikki completed a Bachelors Honours Degree in Community and Youth Work, and a Masters Degree in Social Science, Rights and Social Policy. In her spare time she usually plays Gaelic Football, but after relocating to Australia she now plays Aussie Football, AFL.
Nikki is passionate about the SDGs, and developed a programme aimed at youth centres and schools called the SDG Awareness Flag. She would say Gender Equality is the stand out goal for her. As her main project in Thailand was focused on Gender Equality/Women’s Empowerment.
Rachel hails from Galway and has been involved with EIL since 2014 when she travelled to Chiang Mai, Thailand to volunteer with different social groups using creative mediums such as art, drama, music and dance! She has been involved with the GEC since Jan 2016, but is currently acting in a consulting role with the GEC due to being abroad.
Rachel has a background in Social Care, and has been working and volunteering in the Youth Work Sector since 2015.
In her spare time, Rachel loves to travel, play music, do some photography and try to have new experiences when possible!
Though very difficult to choose just one, her favourite SDG is goal number 10, Reduced Inequalities because this goal incorporates so many different aspects and can apply to many of the other goals!