Under The Rainbow

UtR-directorsUnder The Rainbow is a Social Enterprise created by Gillian Fagan, Dermot McCarthy and Philippa Ryder.  We were united by our activism for human rights and equality and knew that as a team we could make a bigger impact.  We were not wrong!

Our individual stories are very unique yet all have this thing in common; we overcame our struggles by stepping into our authenticity.  We see diversity and inclusion as a key component of good mental health and psychological safety.  We now go that extra mile to help empower others and find solutions that improve wellness.

Given our background in varying corporate environments our passion is to provide Workplace Solutions in order to improve acceptance, inclusion and happiness.

We offer international workshops, talks, seminars and training on all things diversity, inclusion and workplace wellbeing. We provide support to communities, private corporates, NFP / NGOs and the public sector.

Our EDI (Equality, Diversity and Inclusion) Services

Our EDI services cover everything on implementing, improving and maintaining diversity in the workplace and include topics from Diversity Toolkits to Anti-Discrimination, from LGBT at Work to Unconscious Bias, from Racism to Intersectionality.  We pride ourselves on the quality of our work, each company facilitation and talk is bespoke, tailored to you and your company needs.  Our talks range from large well known corporate organisations down to community support and we often run free workshops at community level on self-care, human rights and acceptance.  We provide event management services for Diversity Days such as bringing Pride into your company or having a Bring Your True Self to Work Day.  You can discover more by checking out our Workplace Solutions page or contact us for our brochure.

Two of our founders are highly experienced psychotherapists who have studied group facilitation and specialise in workplace wellbeing and psychology coaching.  We offer consultation services on Mental Health and Professional Support Programmes as well interactive workshops and talks on all workplace solutions for health and wellbeing including Workplace Wellness and Stress Busting.  We know that minding your mind and minding your business go hand in hand and offer an overall employee health check with a view to improving the wellbeing of employees at work.

Therapy Centre

At Under The Rainbow on Capel Street you will also find a Therapy Centre where our therapists offer consultations, coaching, counselling and psychotherapy.  We work with individuals, couples and groups.  All of our therapists also specialise in alternative lifestyles and are trained in diversity and inclusion.  We provide support, training and coaching for therapists on societal non normative issues.  You can discover more by checking out our therapy page.

If you are interested in learning more or grabbing a cuppa to see if we can collaborate with you on a project, contact us today. We would love to hear from you.

The future is different, the future is diverse!

Gillian Fagan, CEO

I love what I do! Why wouldn’t I when I specialise in understanding human behaviour? I am a fully qualified trainer, psychotherapist, counsellor, mental health first aider and coach with experience in leadership, management, diversity and inclusion.  I am a fully accredited member of the Irish Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy (IACP).

I worked in financial services for over 21 years but was not living my passion. It is funny how hindsight works, being made redundant was one of the best things that happened to me as it gave me the opportunity to change direction with my career. I really am privileged that my hobby of understanding why we are the way we are is now my profession, and one I am super passionate about! Now I have quite a variety of qualifications and experience, not only in credit and management, but in psychology, psychotherapy, coaching, diversity, gender, neurodiversity, training and facilitation.

My interest in human behaviour, activism for mental health, volunteering with disability groups and working with the LGBTQIA+ community brought my intrigue to the field of diversity and acceptance.  I have been working with minority groups since the 90s.  We are all unique individuals who matter.

I used my redundancy to train as a psychotherapist and then left the corporate environment to establish AcoraTherapy.  I named AcoraTherapy after my grandmother Cora, who was a natural therapist. Cora volunteered a lot in the community and was never too busy to be there for others. As a child I would help her with her charity work and I got more involved in helping people with disabilities and mental health issues since the mid-90s. I have been facilitating workshops and groups since 2007.

I have many years’ experience in leadership, public speaking, learning and development and working with people through difficult times. I have facilitated workshops on many topics including mental health, workplace wellbeing, meditation & mindfulness, diversity & inclusion, gender, alternative lifestyles, change management, anxiety, burnout, unconscious bias and communication. I am a corporate speaker with the Aunua Academy, Director of Individual Development with JCI Dublin and am continuously engaged in further training and development in order to provide the best service to my clients and peers.

As a therapist I believe that personal fitness includes mental fitness and that inclusion is a key component to good mental health. A combination of my experience, studies and fascination with human behaviour means that I have a unique perspective on corporate wellness. As the requests for corporate training increased I knew it was only a matter of time before I had to expand. I was lucky enough to meet Philippa and Dermot who shared my passion so Under The Rainbow was born!

It is hard to list the things that define me as I am the sum of all of my parts rather than the labels. Work is a huge part of my life, I love what I do so a lot of my hobbies include studying, training and networking. However there is more to me than being a Wellness Entrepreneur. I try to keep fit enough and enjoy learning about health and nutrition. I am a neurodiverse female leader, humanitarian and social activist. I love music, fresh air, meditation and I also cook and take joy in dinner parties and whiskey tasting events with my husband and friends.

I am a passionate person with a lot of energy and describe myself as hard working and fun loving.

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Dermot McCarthy, CFO

My name is Dermot McCarthy. I am an accredited therapist with the IACP (Irish Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy) and current CFO of Under The Rainbow. In 2009, though volunteering for redundancy, I never expected what lay before me. The worse economic recession had just hit Ireland. I was successful in gaining employment after four months, but the relief was short lived. I did not get full employment until early 2010, within that year Depression had gotten a hold of me. I remember the sense of dread, despair and hopelessness of that period. A friend confided that he was seeing a therapist. I asked for the therapist’s number, and so my journey began.

Through the support of my therapist, I regained my confidence. Within the corporate world I became more involved in committees such as LGBT+ Support and Customer Care. During this period, I commenced my studies of becoming a therapist , I finally found a passion and my vocation in life. In 2017, I successfully gained my Honours Degree in Psychotherapy and Counselling from Middlesex University. In 2017, after six years working with a large corporate, I successfully applied for redundancy, with a view to setting up my practice. I am grateful for the experience I gained in the corporate world. In 2018, I founded my practice Inner Voice. In 2019, I successfully achieved my accreditation with the IACP. In 2019, I was a founding member of Under The Rainbow and have been a part of numerous Under The Rainbow corporate workshops to date.

Outside of work and my studies, in 2013, I became involved in a local running club entitled Dublin Frontrunners, the largest LGBT+ sports club in Ireland. To date, I have run numerous races and three marathons. . In 2016, I volunteered for one year with LGBT Ireland Helpline.

I was a member of three Pride Run Committees, being the Pride Run Director for Pride Run 2017 and Pride Run 2018. The Pride Run to date has raised over 60k for LGBT+ Charities. In 2018 , I was the Chair of Dublin Frontrunners, I am immensely proud of my year as Chair, some of my proudest achievements were assisting setting up Cork Frontrunners, Pride Run 2018 reaching 1000 participants, and seeing Dublin Frontrunners grow to 240 members.

In 2019, I took part in the Gay Games in Paris. I am immensely proud of this achievement. I represented Ireland and competed in the 10k race. I came 10th in my age category. After the Gay Games , I became a member of Sporting Pride, a committee that was formed to promote LGBT+ Mental Well Being through Sport. I am the current Treasurer and Mental Well Being Consultant of this Committee working closely with Outhouse, local LGBT Support Centre in Dublin.

I am delighted to be part of Under The Rainbow, each of us how our own stories to tell. We offer companies a vast experience concerning employee well-being and diversity requirements.

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Philippa Ryder, Director

I am a transgender woman. I am a civil servant, dealing with property registration, for almost 40 years. I am married with one amazing daughter. And two cats. And my passion is human rights and exploring the diversity in our world.

I became involved with LGBTQ+ activism when I began to come to terms with myself as transgender, eventually transitioning about 10 years ago. Growing up in Ireland in the 1970s was a very difficult experience in some ways as I felt I had to hide, had nobody to share my feelings with and indeed suffered depression at times. Social expectations forced me to hide my true feelings and it took time for my true self to finally emerge. My work with Under the Rainbow now centres around ensuring others have enough information and support to build the confidence to be themselves, educating, informing and encouraging companies and state bodies to embrace Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging.

I have been a board member and chair of Transgender Equality Network Ireland (TENI), part of the Steering Committee of Transgender Europe (TGEU), involved with Trans Education and Advocacy (TEA). I was very active during both the Marriage Equality Referendum and the Repeal the 8th Campaign. I am also the Public Relations Officer for Sporting Pride, Ireland’s LGBTQ+ sports organisation and, as part of Team Ireland, I travelled to the World Gay Games in 2018 and won 3 medals for Ireland in cycling. I am chair of my Civil Service organisation’s LGBTQ+ Network and also part of the national committee currently setting up a Civil Service wide LGBTQ+ network.

I am regularly asked for interviews about my personal story. I am also available for talks, keynote speeches and panels on all aspects of Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging. My recent appearances have been as part of Dublin Fringe Festival talking about Identity, an interview by Ryan Tubridy (with my wife) on RTE Radio 1, an interview for the Health Supplement of the Irish Independent, an appearance at the World Science Fiction Convention talking about LGBTQ+ issues, a chapter in ‘A Day In May’ by Charlie Bird, a book dealing with the stories of the Marriage Equality Referendum. I also told my story in Snackbox Films ‘Under the Clock’ (2018), most recently shown on RTE 1 television. My current projects include a memoir (currently with a publisher) and a story and photograph competition for the Federation of Gay Games to be published for the World Gay Games in Hong Kong 2022.

Now, with the exciting and innovative company that is Under the Rainbow, we have an opportunity to expand boundaries, to encourage acceptance and show the positive benefits of embracing diversity within all aspects of our lives. I look forward to many future opportunities to inform and educate around the issues and to work with as wide a variety of clients as possible. The future is different. The future is diverse.

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