The Sadaka Board
Maximising support in Ireland for the freedom and rights of the Palestinian people.
Sadaka is an independent, non-governmental and non-party political organisation committed to the achievement of political and human rights for the entire nation of Palestinian people.
Our work is framed within the context of international law and is ultimately aimed at advancing Irish and EU foreign policy on Palestine.
Our work is primarily carried out by a Board of volunteers, supported by the Sadaka Co-ordinator. We seek financial support for individual projects and rely on the generous contributions of our supporters for specific pieces of work. We are a company limited by guarantee. We do not have a membership outside of the Board but invite those who support our work to formally register as a supporter and to make a financial contribution to our work.
The Sadaka Board
Éamonn Meehan joined the board of Sadaka-the Ireland Palestine Alliance in 2019 and took over as Chair in 2023.
Éamonn is a former Director of Trócaire. He has also served on the boards of Irish Aid; Dóchas-the Irish association of international development organisations; the Irish Council for Justice and Peace; and as President of CIDSE, an international network of social justice
Éamonn has a Master of Laws in international human rights law from the School of Law, University of Galway, and a Master of Education from the School of Education, Trinity College, Dublin. He was awarded Chevalier de I’ordre national du mérite by the government of France for work on climate justice, and a doctorate in theology honoris causa by St Patrick’s College, Maynooth.
Val Roche is an activist with over 50 years experience working on international and local development issues in Ireland, Latin America, Africa and Asia. In the 1970s, she lived and worked in El Salvador where she was involved in community organisation and activation. In the early 1980s, she worked for the government of Nicaragua establishing research and documentation systems and centres. Returning to Ireland in the 1980s, Val worked as a Project Officer in Trócaire and subsequently as a free-lance consultant with the EU, Dept. of Foreign Affairs and numerous international development organisations.
For many years, Val was the Managing Director and owner of a long-established family business, ‘The Woollen Mills’, one of the most iconic buildings and businesses in Dublin’s city centre, established over 100 years ago and a former workplace of one James Joyce! Val gained substantial knowledge of financial and human resource management and all aspects of business organisation and strategy in this role. Val’s interest in Palestine dates back to 1967 and she passionately believes that the plight of the Palestinian people is the greatest international injustice of our times.
Marie Crawley is former Chair and co-founder of Sadaka. She resigned from the position of Chair in June 2023 having been in the role since Sadaka was founded in 2009. Marie currently works as an Area Manager within the public sector. She formerly worked as a consultant specialising in the areas of strategic and operational planning, project evaluation, gender equality, cross-community dialogue and organisational effectiveness. Marie is co-author of numerous publications on gender proofing and mainstreaming commissioned both by the Irish government and the NI Assembly. She has designed and delivered multiple training programmes in the area of gender proofing and mainstreaming to Government Departments in Ireland, North and South and with the Government of the Republic of Armenia. Marie has also authored many reports on minority experiences, gender equality and policy to practice handbooks.
A former Vice-Chair of the Northern Ireland Women’s Coalition, she contested elections in the Fermanagh/South Tyrone constituency following the signing of the Good Friday Agreement in 1998. For over 30 years, Marie has served on numerous NGO / statutory partnerships throughout Ireland, mainly in the areas of rural development, gender equality and local service planning. Marie has a long standing involvement in Palestinian solidarity work and visits the West Bank as frequently as possible.
Justin Kilcullen worked thirty two years in Trócaire, one of Ireland’s leading development NGOs. He served twenty years as CEO. Justin left Trócaire in 2013 and retrained as an Executive and Business Coach. He mentors senior managers in
the not-for-profit sector, both in Ireland and internationally.
As well as serving as a board member of SADAKA Justin is a board member and the former Chair of Social Justice Ireland, and a member of a number of other voluntary organisation boards. He is Convenor of SAGE-Shankill Action for a Green Earth, an ecumenical community initiative to counter climate change. On the international level Justin is former Co-Chair and now Special Advisor to the Civil Society Partnership for Development Effectiveness, a constituent body of the UNDP/OECD Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation.
Born in Dublin, Justin graduated from UCD in architecture. He worked in Tanzania, designing low cost housing, in Belfast working on inner city social housing, and for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, constructing refugee camps in Cambodia.
He was awarded the International Union of Architects medal for the promotion of human settlements (2002).
Joan is a retired P.A. who worked in various sectors during her career. With a long standing interest in Middle East politics, Joan was an annual visitor to Palestine where she witnessed at first hand the situation on the ground. However, on one such trip in 2017 Joan was refused entry at Tel Aviv airport and deported, no explanation was ever received for the refusal of entry or no information on how long the entry ban is effective. Joan is an active supporter of human rights and justice for Palestine.
Mona Sabella is a Palestinian human rights and humanitarian law advocate. She is the coordinator of the Corporate Accountability Working Group at the International Network for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ESCR-Net). She previously worked in Geneva with the Cairo Institute for Human Right Studies and with Front Line Defenders in Dublin as an advocate for the rights of communities and human rights defenders in the Middle East and North Africa, focusing particularly on Yemen, Libya, and Palestine.
In Geneva, Mona advocated strongly for the establishment of numerous human rights resolutions, including one that established the Group of Eminent Experts on Yemen and the UN Database of businesses contributing to Israeli settlements that are illegal under international law. For several years, Mona led legal research and advocacy on corporate accountability and colonial practices of dispossession affecting human rights in Palestine working as UN Officer for Al-Haq in Palestine.
Mona holds an LLM in International Human Rights and Humanitarian Law (University of Essex, England) and BA in International Relations and Politics (Earlham College, USA). In 2007, Mona lived in Derry for six months learning about the Irish struggle for freedom and feels a deep connection between Irish and Palestinian freedom.
Gerry Liston is Sadaka’s legal officer. He is a qualified solicitor and practiced briefly in the areas of criminal and civil litigation. In 2016 he graduated with a degree in international human rights law (first-class honours) from the Irish Centre for Human Rights in NUI Galway and is currently undertaking a PhD there. He now works with the Global Legal Action Network (GLAN), an NGO he helped to establish, which pursues innovative legal actions across borders, challenging states and other powerful actors involved with human rights violations. His work with GLAN focuses on a range of issues including climate change, forced labour and accountability for torture.
Gerry Liston drafted the Occupied Territories Bill in 2016 and subsequently worked closely with Senator Frances Black’s office in preparing the legislation for the Seanad in 2018. Gerry is the legal expert on the Occupied Territories Bill campaign team and continues to work on the Bill as it makes its way through the Irish parliament in his dual capacity as legal officer with GLAN and Sadaka.
Gerry spent the summer of 2011 as a research intern for the Badil Resource Center for Palestinian Residency and Refugee Rights in Bethlehem. While in Bethlehem, he lived in Aida refugee camp.
Fiona Fitzgerald is the Sadaka Co-ordinator. Fiona holds two honours degrees: a BA in Philosophy, Sociology and Politics from the University of Galway and an LLM in International Human Rights Law, from the Irish Centre for Human Rights. Fiona brings ten years of experience in advocacy, evidence-based services, and political engagement to her position, supporting the work of Sadaka on a part-time basis. Fiona is contactable at firstname.lastname@example.org.