The Thriveabetes Conference is organised completely by a group of dedicated volunteers who ALL feel passionate about bringing people with type 1 diabetes together to share what we deal with every day and to learn from world class speakers.
The first Thriveabetes took place in 2015 with 120 adults. In 2016, we had 220 adults and children attend. In 2018, we expect to have 300 people with type 1 diabetes come to The Red Cow Hotel, Dublin on Saturday 24th February.
As our conference has grown, so too has our team of volunteer organisers. Hover over each photo for our names and click on the photo to learn a little more about us.
Ken Barclay, Visual Technology
Brian Corrigan, Audio Technology
Eimear (Downey) Pedersen, Venue Coordinator
Rebecca Flanagan, Co-Founder,
Grainne Flynn, Co-Founder & Event Organiser.
Pam Kavanagh, website manager.
Roisin Keegan, Programme Coordinator - Children and Teen
Davina Lyon, Registration Co-Ordinator
Christine Meehan, Co-Founder & Exhibition Planner
Paula Short, Programme Coordinator - Parents
Ken Barclay, Visual TechnologyKen Barclay is from Wicklow. Ken has had Type 1 diabetes for over 25 years and has been an early adopter of insulin pump therapy and Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM). Ken has been involved with the Type 1 Diabetic Support Group over the last few years and is a firm believer in peer to peer support. Ken has a background in IT and likes to use his powers for good by making sure conference presentations go smoothly.
Brian Corrigan, Audio TechnologyCorrigan, Audio Technology and all round sound guy.
Eimear (Downey) Pedersen, Venue CoordinatorEimear (Downey) Pedersen, is originally from Co. Kerry but now lives with her family in Cork. Eimear was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in 1996. Eimear has a PhD in Biochemistry and has worked for many years in food and nutrition research. Eimear had accomplished much in her life with diabetes including rowing for Ireland at underage level. She is married to Kasper and they have 2 daughters- Katie and Orlaith.
Rebecca Flanagan, Co-Founder,Rebecca Flanagan, originally from America but living in Co. Clare for 18 years, and is owner and manager of Ballyvara House, a luxury self-catering guesthouse. Rebecca’s father has type 1 diabetes (since the age of 13), and her 16 year old daughter has had type 1 diabetes since she was 8 years old. She has been fundraising for Diabetes Ireland through participating in Run-a-Muck, the LA Marathon and several of the Clare 10K runs.
Grainne Flynn, Co-Founder & Event Organiser.Grainne Flynn was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 1993 at aged 20. Originally from Co. Offaly, she now lives in Co. Clare, is a stay at home parent and a diabetes blogger on Blood Sugar Trampoline. She has been volunteering with the Clare branch of Diabetes Ireland since 2008, organising several diabetes education meetings, type 2 diabetes screenings and fundraisers. She also facilitates the Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes support groups in Clare.
Pam Kavanagh, website manager.Pam Kavanagh has temporarily stepped back from Thriveabetes but has been a huge help in maintaining this website and much, much more. Pam lives in Co. Kildare and her son was diagnosed in February 2016.
Roisin Keegan, Programme Coordinator - Children and TeenRoisin Keegan was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in 2004 aged 16. Roisin is from Dublin. She graduated from IT Sligo with a BA in Applied Social Care Studies. After completing a nine month internship in a Family Support Service she currently works with children with special needs. She has been volunteering with Diabetes Ireland's Sweetpea Kidz Club for a number of years and has also been helping run the Dublin Adult Type 1 Diabetes Support Group. For the past three years, she has had the pleasure volunteering for Diabetes UK children's camps as both as Senor Leader and Welfare Officer.
Davina Lyon, Registration Co-OrdinatorDavina Lyon was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in her late 40’s when she was alredy in remission from Graves disease, also an autoimmune condition. She lives in Co. Kildare and is retired. Davina is Co-Founder of Diabetes T1 Ireland, a diabetes support website and facebook page and does what she can voluntarily to advocate for better services, education and corecct diabetes awareness. She also volunteers with Spina Bifida Hydrocephalus when her grand-daughter, Alyssa was born with it in 2016.
Christine Meehan, Co-Founder & Exhibition PlannerChristine Meehan was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 2006 and lives in Clare. She recently graduated from NUIG with a BA degree in Community and Family Studies. She works in Family Support in Limerick Social Service Council Ltd. Over the years, Christine has volunteered with Diabetes Ireland, Childline, Clare Youth Service and with Spina Bifida Hydrocephalus Ireland.
Paula Short, Programme Coordinator - ParentsPaula Short lives in Co. Galway. Paula’s son was diagnosed with Type 1 four years ago, when he was seven years old. Paula tutors in Counselling and Psychotherapy and is in private practice as a Psychotherapist. When someone in a family is diagnosed with Type 1, the whole family is affected. Paula would love to see families being given, not only practical, medical and educational support at this time, but also the emotional support they need.