BALLYSHANNON woman and VSO returned volunteer, Mary Duggan, has been honoured by Minister Joe Costello at the VSO’s 10th anniversary reception for her work in fighting global poverty overseas

Mary received an award recently recognising her contribution to fighting global poverty as a volunteer. Leading international development organisation VSO, as part of its 10th anniversary, celebrated the work of its volunteers at an event in the Old House of Lords, Dublin 2. Since 2004, 250 Irish people from all walks of life volunteered overseas to help tackle global poverty. 

Last year, VSO volunteers helped to train and mentor nearly 150,000 education professional, 22,000 health professionals and supported nearly 1 million people through its Making Markets Work for the Poor (MMWP) project.

Mary, a retired teacher, is one of VSO Ireland’s returned volunteers who worked in Ethiopia. As a Higher Diploma Leader, Mary’s work included leading and teaching the Higher Diploma Programme to teachers and lecturers in Sekota College of Teacher Education.

In recognition of her work as a VSO volunteer, Mary received a certificate from Minister of State for Trade and Development, Joe Costello, who also spoke about the importance of volunteering in Ireland’s development strategy.

VSO is urgently seeking more volunteers, particularly in the areas of health (doctors and nurses), education (teachers and principals) and community development to support its projects in the developing world. Volunteers must have a degree qualification and a minimum of five years post-qualification experience. The volunteer placements last from six to 24 months.

For more information or to register for an information event visit

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