Breakout Sessions

In addition to the incredible main stage lineup, the Ombudsman for Children’s Office is delighted to announce our breakout sessions at Beyond Limits! Each ticket holder will receive an email with details on how to preregister for these sessions. Please see the full schedule below.


Davin Suite

Wellbeing and Mindfulness 11:00-11:30 Ana Alves Smyth
Sharing Insights 12:00-12.50 Ombudsman for Children's Office
UNCRPD 13:05-13:55 Inclusion Ireland & Disability Federation of Ireland
Sport Inclusion 15.00-15:55 CARA


Nally Suite

Technology 11:00-11:50 James Northridge - Urability
Conversation Café – Relationships 12:05-12:50 Jessica Mannion
Parents Issues 13:05-14:00 National Parents Council
Wellbeing and Mindfulness 15:20-15:50 Ana Alves Smyth


Wellbeing and Mindfulness

Ana Alves Smyth has been teaching yoga and mindfulness since 2011. She is based in Birr, Co. Offaly and leads sessions both in Ireland and abroad for people with disabilities. This session will include breath work, gentle mindful movement, chant, mudra (hand position) and sound healing and meditation. When we bring body and mind together using these sacred technologies, awareness and relaxation naturally occurs. This session is limited to a maximum of 40 people on a pre-registration basis.


Sharing Insights

The Ombudsman for Children’s Office (OCO) will host a session giving those attending the opportunity to share their insights with key policy makers. Representatives from the Departments of Children and Youth Affairs, Health, the Education and Skills, Justice and Equality, Housing Planning and Local Government, Culture Heritage and the Gaeltacht and the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport have been invited to attend on the day. Up to 40 people will have the opportunity to pre-register for this session and to share their insights in advance. Department representatives will then have an opportunity to prepare and to respond in a meaningful way to the issues raised. The Sharing Insights session will last for 50 minutes and will be led by Dr Karen McAuley, Head of Policy with the OCO .



This session will be facilitated by the Toni Gleeson from the Disability Federation of Ireland and Petria Malone from Inclusion Ireland. It will look at applying the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) to Advocate for children and specifically look at these four articles; Article 7 Children with Disabilities, Article 23 Respect for Home & the Family, Article 24 Education, Article 25 Health. Up to 40 people will be able to pre-register for this session.


Sport Inclusion

Do you have an interest in sports or being active? CARA will be facilitating this session on sports inclusions and would like to get a better understanding of your experiences around being active, the importance it has in your life, and what you would like others to know. This session is open to children and young people with disabilities who would be interested in sharing your experiences, challenges and needs in relation to being active. Numbers for this session are limited and is geared towards young people with disabilities. It will be on a preregistration basis.


Parents’ Issues – your child’s right to be included

Should Your Child be Educated with their Peers?
The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), a human rights treaty, was adopted by the United Nations in 2006, signed by the Irish Government 2007 and ratified in March 2018.

The Convention requires the Irish Government to ensure that:

People with disabilities are not excluded from the general education system and that children with disabilities are not excluded from free and compulsory primary education, or from secondary education, on the basis of disability
Children with disabilities can access an inclusive, quality and free primary education and secondary education on an equal basis with others in the communities in which they live
Children receive the support required, within the general education system to facilitate their effective education.

This session will provide information on Ireland’s obligations under Article 24 and will also provide parents with an opportunity to have their say on what they want for their child.

Speakers will be:
Áine Lynch CEO, National Parents Council Primary
Mary Byrne, Head of Special Education, National Council for Special Education
Please note this session is suitable for parents only and is limited to 40 people via preregistration.


Conversation Café – Relationships

Facilitated by Jess Mannion, Lecturer in Social Care IT Sligo, Casual Lecturer in Disability Rights in the TCPID (Trinity Centre for People with Disabilities) and PhD disability researcher, School of Nursing, Trinity College Dublin.

Let’s get the conversation started about relationships. This session will be a café style event, be ready for a chilled out and interactive experience. Very much like a regular café with jazz music, relaxed décor, candle lit tables, hot drinks and delicious treats. However, this café is a little more unique, here you will be encouraged to get the conversation started on relationships. Each table will have a conversation starter, and you will be asked to move seats for different discussions throughout. If you would like your conversation to go further, be ready to Tweet the issues that are important to you through a facilitated live tweet session. Welcome to Jess’s conversation café!

#beyondlimits19 #conversationcafe #relationships



Technology is all around us, however, are we using it in the right way? Is it being used effectively to ensure that learners that most need help are getting the support they need to succeed in the classroom? This hands-on learning experience will explore the array of technology supports that are available to meet the needs of ALL learners.

James Northridge will draw on both his personal, work and academic experiences to enlighten the group as to how we can use technology to empower all students. Parents, teachers, SNAs and students will walk away from the session with practical solutions to current issues and insights on how to best use some common pieces of technology.

James will review a number of pieces of technology that can be used both in the classroom and at home to aid struggling learners, showing how to use them and of course when they are best used. A range of AT tools will be demo'ed along with everyday technology to support ALL learners.