Our Team

Arthur Coakley works as a Job Coach for the Bantry and Castletownbere area. His educational background is in Social Science where he recently graduated with a level 8 honours degree from UCC. Arthur has grown up and lived in Bantry, so has strong links in the community. He has been working in his family business from a young age. Arthur works from a person-centred perspective and is passionate about working with people. Arthur is involved with his local club Bantry Blues. He is currently playing with the senior football team and is involved with coaching underage teams. Arthur is looking forward to meeting both clients and employers in the coming months.

Erin Kelly Ashworth has been an Employment Facilitator with EmployAbility Service since May 2009. Erin comes from a professional sales background and also has experience working in the government sector. She has a B.A. in Business Management with an emphasis in Human Resources which included Training and Development and Human Resource Management. Since joining the organisation she has completed a Diploma in Disability Studies from U.C.C. Erin has also successfully completed professional continuing education in Active Listening, Advocacy, Boundary Management, Mental Health, Motivational Interviewing and Train the Trainer

Darren Priest is a qualified Career Coach (MSc from the University of East London) and has a Masters in Occupational Health Psychology (MSc from the University of Nottingham). These give insight into the effects of un(der)employment on the individual and provides tools that can help develop a solutions focused way forward for his clients. He is an enthusiast for Brief Solution Focused Coaching and utilises his training at the world leading BRIEF Centre in London in support of his clients.
Having worked abroad for twenty years, and gaining a Post Graduate Teaching Diploma on the way, he has trained public, multinational and government clients in soft skills and language use. In Cork he has taught at UCC and was part of the small team that delivered the JobFit programme. JobFit exceeded ambitious government targets set in helping those distant from the labour market to re-join the labour force. He is currently a Job Coach in West Cork and continues to support clients towards the future they want.

Emer is a qualified Social Care Worker (BA. Hons) and has a MA. In Criminology. Having worked for many years as a front-line social care worker, working in residential services, addiction and domestic violence to name a few. Emer went on to study for her MA in UCC. Upon completion, Emer was asked to join the Criminology team in UCC. During her time, Emer developed and taught a module to BA. Criminology students. It was during this time, Emer was tasked with undertaking the role as student support/ personal tutor. This developed an interest in coaching and motivational approaches. This led to a move over to Adult Education in UCC, where Emer had responsibility for Coordinating Springboard courses within UCC. Emer is a advocate of lifelong learning.

Iona Wilson works as a Job Coach in the Kinsale Office. Her educational background is in Psychology (Bsc University of Chester) and Coaching/Coaching Psychology (Hdip UCC). Iona’s professional experience includes care work, horticulture, entrepreneurship, office administration, marketing and sales. She brings together her diverse work experience along with her passion for working with people in a person centered and supportive way to explore and find meaningful employment for her clients.

Clare Gallagher has a Bachelors of Arts degree from University College Cork and postgraduate diploma in Tourism & Business University of Limerick. Her background has been in local development, tourism and travel however her love of education has led her back to UCC where she recently graduated with a first class honours in Level 6 Certificate in Mental Health in the Community. Clare is based in the Skibbereen office, in the town where she grew up and lives with her extended family. She is very community driven involved in many organisations throughout the years, sporting, schools, charity and festivals in the town of Skibbereen. Clare has extensive employer connections in the area and focuses with her clients on finding the role which will bring out their full potential. She also has a great understanding of the educational and learning difficulties which many people face and works jointly with them to overcome these challenges. Clare looks forward to meeting new people and welcomes them to come in and have a chat in their office overlooking the Maid of Erin on the town square of Skibbereen and see how they might best work together.

Micheal Hurley, BScSc 2004-2007 MSocSc (Voluntary and Community Sector Management) 2011-2013. Micheal has worked with Employability Service West Cork as a job coach from 2007 to 2018. In 2018 Micheal became the Coordinator of Employability Service West Cork. Micheal works from a person-centred perspective, encouraging people and building confidence through supportive interactions. Micheal actively volunteers in his community and currently is the Cultural Officer with Castlehaven G.A.A., Director of West Cork Development Partnership, Skibbereen Community and Family Resource Centre and is a committee member with Skibbereen Chamber of Commerce along with involvement in other community and voluntary organisations. Micheal is an advocate of continuous learning and has completed many other training courses including, Higher Diploma in Counselling and Psychotherapy – 2014, Disability Studies, Mental Health Awareness and Boundary Management.

Find Us On Facebook


EmployAbility Services are funded by the Irish Government through the Department of Social Protection
Tá Seirbhísí Infhostaitheachta maoinithe ag Rialtas na hÉireann tríd an Roinn Gnóthaí Fostaíochta agus Coimirce Sóisialaí

Workstart West Cork Limited Trading as Employability Service West Cork CRO Number 382867

Patron: Lord David Puttnam


OnePage CRM sponsoring EmployAbility West Cork through the “Power of Action” Programme.

Microsoft Philanthropies is working to create a future where every person has the skills, knowledge, and opportunity to achieve more.


Gearoid O Driscoll (chair), Maria O'Donovan, Dominic Cronin, Julie Silfverberg, Evie Neven, Mary Hegarty.