About Ag Eisteacht



“What continues to inspire me is the feedback and case studies we receive from practitioners illustrating how Ag Eisteacht’s training has enhanced their ability to relate, communicate and understand others - the gift that is to both client and practitioner.”

Dr Maeve Hurley, founder and CEO

Ag Eisteacht is the Irish word for listening – a key skill in building relationships.

We are an Irish registered charity, founded by Dr Maeve Hurley, a former GP.

By helping frontline staff to communicate from a place of compassion and understanding, we believe that quality relationships in practice can be nurtured, leading to better outcomes for all.

Our Vision, Mission and Values

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Our Story

Dr Maeve Hurley, a former GP and our CEO, established Ag Eisteacht in 2001. We are now Ireland’s leading provider of relationship-centred communication training, upskilling over 3,000 frontline practitioners to date.

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Our work

We train frontline practitioners in healthcare, social care and education to adopt a relationship-centred approach for better health & wellbeing outcomes.

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 Why we do it

Relationships matter. Evidence shows they are key determinant of health and wellbeing, acting as both a buffer and a risk factor.

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Where we train

We deliver our training virtually and face-to-face in welcoming, reflective spaces to make the most of the learning experience.

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Our Vision, Mission and Values

Our vision

We aspire to an Ireland where all practitioners are empowered with the skills and resources to respond in a sensitive and focused way when someone turns to them for help, particularly during times of change or relational distress.

Our mission

Our mission is to enhance practitioners’ capacity to be present and attuned through training so that you have the skills to empower and support your clients and look after yourself.

Our values

 Time, attention and respect stand at the heart of our work.

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Our Story

How it all started

There was a clear moment in Dr Maeve Hurley’s career when she knew what type of practitioner she wanted to be.

Working as a GP in a busy practice, there were many times when Maeve sensed that there may have been something else going on for a patient. But she felt that she didn’t have the skills, confidence, time or framework to enter that space and open up that conversation.

Feedback from a patient crystallised Maeve’s conviction that taking a more relationship-centred and reflective approach to practice was vital for her patients’ and her own health and wellbeing.

It started her on a journey to learning how to build relationships with patients, to be a better communicator and to becoming a trainer and an advocate for a relationship-centred approach in practice.

Maeve’s area of specialist interest is relational wellbeing and the field of research and evidence which unequivocally demonstrates the critical role relationships play in determining health and well-being.

Ag Eisteacht became an Irish registered charity in 2013.

Click here to hear Maeve’s vision that led to her founding Ag Eisteacht

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Our work

We help frontline practitioners to understand the impact of positive relationships on health and wellbeing outcomes and to build quality relationships in practice.

Our evidence-informed training courses develop your interpersonal skills, insight and knowledge so that you can support and empower individuals and families.

The ABLE training model also provides a framework to help you to manage your time and boundaries for your own wellbeing.

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 Why we do it

Relationships are part of what keeps us healthy.

Scientific studies show that positive relationships are good for our health. They can help us to feel safe, seen, soothed, and create a space where we are able to be open and share our worries and concerns.

ABLE training considers:

  1. The relationship between you and your client
  2. The client in the context of his or her relationships and how those relationships can impact their health and wellbeing

When people are struggling, particularly in their relationships, they often turn to a trusted practitioner for support. This could be a GP, a family support worker, a public health nurse, a social worker, a childcare worker or a teacher.

But times pressures, uncertainly around boundaries and fear that you may be expected to ‘fix’ something can sometimes limit your ability to respond.

This is where our training can help you.

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Where we train

Many of our CPD-approved ABLE courses are available virtually, providing engaging, evidence-informed content to support your personal and professional development.

We also deliver our training courses at our head office at Northridge House in Cork, where there is ample parking and easy access, or at a venue of your choice. For details please email: [email protected]

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How can we help you?

Often, these are short interventions or moments. At other times, people need more time and support. One of the biggest challenges for me was being able to boundary my time in a respectful way while learning to leave the door open for future conversations.

Karina Healy, The Lantern Project

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