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Your Passion, Your Legacy

Interview series hosted by MDN's Lorcan Brennan during 2021

Discovering what made his guests tick and discussing their work in the men’s health and development space was the focus of this series of monthly evening conversations broadcast online.

Through his work at the MDN, on intersectoral committees and with core partnerships, Lorcan has helped shape national policy, strategy and initiatives to improve Men’s Health & Wellbeing.


Thursday 21 Oct 2021

*Available on-demand

Here, host Lorcan Brennan chatted with Finian Murray, Men’s Health Development Officer within the Health Promotion and Improvement Department of the Health Service Executive (HSE). 

Their conversation explored the work Finian has engaged in supporting men’s health. He also talks about his interest in comedy and how humour can play a part in raising awareness of men’s issues and promoting key health messages.

This was a pre-recorded edition (separate from the scheduled series) and so is available “on demand” at any time.

About Finian

As well as his long-time day job with the HSE, Finian helps coordinate and deliver the ENGAGE National Men’s Health Training Programme. Holding a Masters Degree in Adult and Community Education, he has also authored a number of peer-reviewed papers on men’s health, and contributes a regular humour column to the HSE’s staff publication called ‘Health Matters’.


Broadcast on Thursday 16 Sept 2021

Lorcan’s first guest after the summer break was Helen Forristal, Director of Nursing Services with the Marie Keating Foundation. The theme of their conversation was “Concerning Health – Putting Men at Ease”.

One of Helen’s key focuses with MKF has been to enhance survivorship through the supportive programmes the Foundation offers. “Positive Living is very much on our agenda and it has been a privilege to offer programmes to patients and families who find themselves with secondary cancer in need of hope, support and knowledge,” she says.

Watch out for video edit coming soon.

Helen Forristal (Photo: Irish Times)

About Helen

Director of Nursing Services with the Marie Keating Foundation, Helen worked for 22 years in London focussing on the area of urology. She joined the Macmillan Cancer Support team, after seeing the need for a more holistic approach to the care of cancer patients. Helen set up two support groups for men with prostate cancer and their families, called Prospect and PHASE.

Before returning to Ireland Helen ended her time at Macmillan as Cancer Nurse Director, a post that involved leadership and accountability at a strategic level. Back home, she worked as a Clinical Nurse Manager, where her role evolved to encompass a patient-centred care approach based on the principles of empowerment, dignity, compassion, justice, privacy, confidentiality, choice, advocacy and quality.

Since joining MKF, initially in 2014, Helen took a year out to go back into clinical practice at the Beacon Hospital in Dublin where she managed a team of oncology nurses in acute oncology end of life care.

July edition

Broadcast on Thursday 15th July 2021

Lorcan was in conversation with Andy O’Hara about Supporting Traveller Men’s Health.

Until very recently Andy was the Pavee Point Men’s Health Coordinator and is still doing project work with the organisation. He has been involved in working with men at risk of marginalisation for over 10 years, exploring the issues that affect them, through their own lived experience. The aim is to ensure Traveller men are leaders in developing collective responses “through a process of participation, collective decision making and action which increases our ability to inform national policies and affect positive social change.”

Previous episode

Broadcast on Thursday 17th June 2021

Rediscovering the Great Outdoors

Lorcan in conversation with Jason King, Programme Manager with Get Ireland Walking. He is an Exercise Professional and Personal Trainer with REPS Ireland. After work, travel and family, In his spare time he loves walking, photography, off-road hiking and running on trails and mountains.

With Get Ireland Walking, Waterford man Jason works to establish key partnerships with specific governmental agencies at local and national level. Working closely with health, sport and educational providers and aiming to support existing partnerships in their continued efforts. 

Get Ireland Walking provide support to local sports partnerships to deliver walking programmes, training and development, research, monitoring and evaluation. Their core work strives to support walking groups and promote a vibrant walking culture for Ireland. 


Also coming up

Thurs 18th November: Creatively Expressing Your Self?

  • Guest: Fergus Hogan, Waterford IT
passion schedule
Download full schedule


Scheduled for Thursday 20th May 2021 (deferred to October):

Lorcan in conversation with Finian Murray, HSE. Finian does a little moonlighting as a stand-up comedian and shared insights from dual roles as comedian and his many years of working promoting Men’s Health with the HSE. Highlighting the important role humour can play in our lives for wellbeing, he also signposts to supports and resources. that can be a real help through these challenging and uncertain times.

Thursday 15th April 2021: Lorcan in conversation with Colin Fowler, Men’s Health Forum Ireland. Colin is a founding member of the Men’s Health Forum of Ireland set up in 1999 to cover the whole Island of Ireland and is currently Director of Operations. He has been involved in youth work since the 1970s and in the field of men and gender since the ’80s and has been involved in cross-community and reconciliation work over his career. He coordinates a wide alliance to deliver Men’s Health Week, and Lorcan of MDN, who has 18 years of experience engaging men in health & wellbeing and training service providers to do the same, has sat alongside Colin on a range of national committees around men’s health in Ireland.

Thursday 18th March 2021: Lorcan in conversation with Se Franklin, Men’s Development Worker. Se has 24 years of experience working with men in circles, opening up hearts and minds through shared safety and conversation. Lorcan has 18 years of experience engaging men in health & wellbeing and training service providers to do the same.