Greetings from Corcaigh (Cork)! It’s hard to believe that I’m officially done with my internship in Galway and back with my partner in Cork. The 6 weeks with NUIG HPRC absolutely blew by and left me with so many meaningful, lasting connections. Things changed a bit since my last blog post—I was originally hoping to explore health outcomes among Traveller school-children and immigrant school-children, but due to a bit of a delay with the data cleaning around the immigrant variable, I ended up focusing solely on health outcomes among Traveller school-children. Although I’m disappointed I didn’t have time to explore the data on 1st and 2nd generation immigrant school-children in Ireland, the delay allowed me to dedicate all of my efforts to the Traveller data—and I got so much more out of it because of that. I was able to finish analyzing the mental health outcomes and had time to run bullying perpetration and victimization statistics, as well. I wrote up a report on Traveller school-children mental health outcomes compared to non-Traveller school-children, and am excited to hopefully get it published! We’ll be sharing it on the NUIG HPRC website and submitting it to the NIHS bulletin—unfortunately, I can’t tell y’all what we found until the National Report is published this fall. Check back into their website in October and read my report on Traveller School-Children Mental Health & Wellbeing to see what we found (nuigalway.ie/hbsc/)  😊

Shout-out to the amazing team at HPRC!

With the newfound time I had without the immigrant data, I ended up reaching out to a few Traveller advocacy organizations around Ireland in an effort to find outlets for disseminating our findings. Their response was incredible—they’re hoping to get access to the infographics as soon as they can and use the data to spread awareness about health inequities in Ireland. I created about 20 infographics with a variety of data around bullying, social support, sexual health, and mental health. I can’t wait to share them with the community organizations once I’m allowed!

One of the (blinded) infographics about Traveller well-being.

Although I’m no longer in the HPRC office at NUIG, I know that it is not the end of my work with them. I am so incredibly grateful to the team’s dedication to improving the health and well-being of all of Ireland’s population. Their dedication to conducting research which ultimately informs policies and programs across Ireland is truly inspiring. Before my time with HPRC, I had conducted research in the private sector for pharmaceutical companies, and in the public sector at UNC. However, this was my first time working at the intersection of research and policy with an international organization, and I absolutely loved it. I’ll miss the friendly faces of the research team at HPRC, and the cows and horses I passed by each day on my walk to work. I’ll be back, HPRC! Until then, I’ve got one more Irish adventure camping on the coast of the Gaelic-speaking island of Cape Clear.

Camping in Clifden at Ireland’s only carbon-neutral accommodation.

Wish me luck!

– Casey