All TIGALA Guardians ad Litem have a minimum of 10 years’ experience working with children and families.
Our Guardians ad Litem
Our Trusted Experts
Niall has ten years experience in working in the field of child protection, child welfare, family support, fostering and addiction services. Niall has had the responsibility for undertaking and overseeing the management of comprehensive assessments of children at risk of physical, emotional, sexual abuse and neglect: culminating in 140 plus cases. Niall has ten years’ experience in overseeing childcare proceedings, statutory reviews and implementation of care plans; whilst making the necessary provisions of care through both statutory and voluntary agencies. Niall has considerable experience of managing High Court, Children’s Court and District Court cases demonstrating decision-making skills in complex legal and practice areas in the delivery of a social work service. Niall has eight years’ experience of working in the area of intellectual and physical disabilities with adults within day, respite and residential services through St. Michaels House and with the homeless population through the Salvation Army where Niall worked with adults accessing homeless services.
Contributions to Child Protection in Ireland
Niall has managed a social work team of six social workers for a period of four years with a mixed caseload of children in care and children at risk in the community. Niall has four years’ experience of undertaking assessments and facilitating a group treatment programme for adolescent boys who have sexually harmed and Niall has facilitated a group for parents of adolescent boys who have sexually harmed.
2014–2015 | Conflict and Dispute Resolution Studies Post Graduate Diploma at Trinity College Dublin.
2000–2004 | Bachelor in Social Studies, National Qualification Social Work, Trinity College Dublin. Second Class First Division Honour obtained.
1997–1999 | Whitehall Senior College
National Diploma in Social Care
NCVA Certificate in Community and Health Services
Further Education and Training
2007 | One Family: Positive Parenting Training: Training for Trainers. Three day Positive Parenting
2005 | The Brief Therapy Group - Solution Focus Brief Therapy Training Course (Mod. 1+2)
2004–2013 | HSE, Various legal training in relation to the Child Care Act, 1991, The Children’s Act 2001 and Children’s First.
2004–2013 | TVarious mandatory training. This includes Supervisee training and People Management, The Legal Framework.
2010–2014 | Southside Inter-Agency Treatment Team (SIATT) Group facilitator for the treatment of adolescents who have sexually harmed.
2014–Present | Appointed Advocate for parents with intellectual disabilities in family law proceedings through the Dublin metropolitan district Court and with vulnerable adults in the Criminal Circuit Courts.
2014–Present | Niall has been commissioned to undertake Section 47 and 32 assessments in respect of the welfare of dependent children through the Circuit Family Courts. Niall has also undertaken an assessment in respect of a ‘Professional Opinion’ as to the best interests of the child for the purpose of European Courts of Appeal, Brussels.
2014–Present | Independent Guardian ad Litem: Appointed GAL for children involved in family law proceedings with an independent voice in court where the courts are advised on what is in the best interests of the child concerned. The GAL also makes the court aware of the child’s wishes and consults with the child, the child’s family and any other organisations involved with the child and family.
2016–2018 | Provided mediation services for the Ballymun Law Centre on a weekly basis for separating couples.
2010–2014 | Community Care Area 3 Long-Term Child Protection Team. Acting Team Leader
2010–2014 | Southside Inter-Agency Treatment Team SIATT. Facilitator of group therapy
2008–2010 | Community Care Area 3 Long-term Child Protection Team. Senior Social Work Practitioner
2004–2008 | Community Care Area 6 (CCA6) Family Addiction Support Team Social Work Practitioner
2003–2004 | The Salvation Army (Homeless service). Support Key Worker
1999–2004 | St. Michael’s House (Disability Services). Assistant House Parent
For four years Niall has facilitated a group treatment programme for adolescent boys who have sexually harmed and undertaking individual educational and relapse prevention plans. Niall has also facilitated a group programme for parents of adolescent sex offenders in offering parental support programmes.
Niall has undertaking parenting assessments and comprehensive risk assessments of children in care and in the community for court proceedings.
Niall has been a Social Work Practice Teacher for both Trinity College Dublin and University College Dublin for six years.
Areas of Special Interest
2004–2007 | Millennium Carvings Drug Programme Dublin 7. Active involvement with this programme and linking in with staff and service-users in relation to access to services and supports, and acting in an advocacy role in supporting service-users in addressing drug misuse.
2010–2014 | Southside Interagency Treatment team. Group Facilitator in the treatment of adolescents who sexually harm.