UISCE (Advocacy For People Who Use Drugs) Staff

Andy O’Hara 

Maria Otero Vazquez Community Development Officer UISCE


Andy O’Hara – Coordinator

Andy has worked in the community and voluntary sector for over 10 years. His work to date has involved working directly with those at risk of marginalisation through a community development approach, ‘meeting people where they are at’ and creating the conditions for groups to identify issues and develop collective responses which can lead to social change. This involved empowering groups to design and deliver programmes which involved collective decision making and collective action, aimed at bringing about ‘a better deal’ for the whole group; community or marginalised group and seeking to address unequal access to power, decision making and resources. A key element of this involved engaging with those in power, producing submissions with groups who experience marginalisation based on their lived experience and ensuring policies were inclusive of their experiences.

María Otero Vázquez

Maria Otero Vazquez Community Development Officer UISCE

Community Development Officer

María Otero Vázquez – Community Development Officer

María started as an intern in UISCE back in 2016 and since 2017 she works as Community Development Officer of UISCE managing projects, advocacy and communications, working in partnership with services and coproducing and editing the Brass Munkie magazine. She holds a MSc. in Health Psychology from the University of Santiago de Compostela (Spain) and a MRes. Applied Research in Feminist, Gender and Citizenship Studies from the University Jaume I (Spain).

Caroline McElroy

Maria Otero Vazquez Community Development Officer UISCE

Peer Support Worker

Caroline McElroy – Peer Support Worker

Caroline is the Peer Support Worker with UISCE.  She has volunteered her time the last 12 years to support the community of people who use drugs and people who struggle with mental health. She is part of a women’s group the last 17 years supporting and empowering women in recovery.  She believes everyone has a voice and deserves an opportunity to share it with the world.  Through her own life experiences with drug use, she wants to empower people to make their voice heard and access the supports needed.

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