We are thrilled to introduce Mariah Kelly, the newest addition to the IRISi Board of Directors. Mariah brings a wealth of knowledge and a strong commitment to advancing gender equality, health equity, and social justice. In a recent interview, she shared her background, motivations, and aspirations for her role at IRISi. Join us in welcoming Mariah to the IRISi community!
Mariah Kelly’s professional journey is characterised by a deep dedication to improving the lives of individuals and communities. She holds a master’s degree in health policy, where she cultivated a keen interest in understanding the social determinants of health and addressing health inequalities. Over the years, she has worked in both the charity and public sectors, focusing on various health and social policy issues.
Mariah’s journey to becoming an IRISi Board Member began when she learned about our organisation through a colleague at the Health Foundation. She was struck by IRISi’s exceptional reputation and its unwavering commitment to its mission and vision. “Having worked in the field of gender-based violence previously, I have seen how pervasive the issue is, as well as the harm it causes to physical and mental health and ability to participate fully in society”, she says.
Driven by a strong commitment to intersectional feminism, our new board member understands the pivotal role that addressing gender-based violence plays in achieving women’s equality and human rights. “Healthcare is an important part of this, given that health and social care workers are often the first professionals to have contact with those affected by domestic violence and abuse. I am hopeful that I can bring my experience of policy development to support IRISi’s mission, identifying opportunities to influence and shape government policy for the better, as well as increase the profile of IRISi. I am also keen to get involved in developing our approach to equality, diversity and inclusion”.
Looking ahead, Mariah recognises the challenges facing both IRISi and society at large. The current economic crisis and rising cost of living are causing increased economic insecurity, making women and children more vulnerable to gender-based violence. Simultaneously, healthcare systems, like many public services, are under extreme strain and facing difficult funding decisions. “In this context, IRISI’s work feels more important than ever and I’m really looking forward to supporting it in any way I can”, says our new Board Member.
We are excited to work alongside her as we continue our mission to improve the response to gender-based violence and create a more equitable and inclusive world for all. Please join us in extending a warm welcome to Mariah as she embarks on this new chapter with IRISi!