We moved into Gortilea in 2005 and firmly believe that the countryside can provide a unique environment to nurture the potential of individuals and groups. We have a excellent team with a wealth of experience, knowledge and skills offering every participant a welcoming and personalised learning experience.
Read more about our team lead by Clare Mullan OTR and member of the Health Professionals Council as well as Associate Member of the American Hippotheraphy Assocation.
Seamus is the main farmer at Gortilea Social Farm and has many years experience in a wide range of farming activities. Seamus became involved in Social Farming after completing a Pilot programme in 2014 which was developed by Leitrim Development Company in partnership with DARD, University Dublin and Queens University. Seamus is a sheep and beef farmer and has a particular interest in Countryside Management.
Clare is the daughter of Seamus and Susan and has grown up on the farm. She is a qualified Occupational Therapist with over 10 years’ experience in supporting adults and children with disabilities achieve their goals. Clare is our onsite occupational therapist and works with and supports participants to devise their person centred plan. She then continues to support participants to achieve their short and long term goals. She has a keen interest in horses and has completed her post graduate hippotherapy training in America. Clare has recently begun offering hippotherapy at Gortilea- currently the only hippotherapy centre in Northern Ireland.
Member of the Health Professions Council.
Associate Member of the American Hippotherapy Association.
Malachy McCloskey joined Gortilea in 2015. Malachy has a keen interest in the environment and takes a lead role in the management of the Polytunnel, planting hedges and environmental management. Malachy has lived and worked in a farming environment for many years and enjoys working with and supporting the young adults who participate in Social Farming.
Robert joined Gortilea in March 2016 as the farms support worker. Previous to this he was employed by the Western Health and Social Care Trust and its predecessors for some 37 years. Robert began his career as an Estates Deptment Gardener in 1979 in ST.Coloums Hospital, moving then to the Ground maintenance team that was responsible for the upkeep of all Health Board property in L/Derry and Strabane. He then moved to Gransha Hospital and into the departments small team of propagating staff that were responsible for all the growing of plants ,flowers and vegetables that were used within the various Board facilities.
While there he worked alongside a number of people who had different Mental Health problems and who attended each day as apart of a rehabilitation programme.( this unit in later years became what is now the Sow and Grow horticulture unit which Robert helped to establish.) An opportunity then arose in Stradreagh Hospital for a Horticulture instructor in the Sheltered Therapy Workshop which Robert applied for in May of 1988, being successful in obtaining this he progressed to Senior Day Care Worker in the following years and with the reorganisation of Day Care services for Learning Disability in 2003/2004 he was asked to establish a small care facility in the Waterside. This was to become the Valley Centre which catererd for a group of young individuals with different aspects of disability He remained there with full responsibility for the Centre until he retired in March 2016
491 Baranailt Road,