With a background in tech and computer software Roseann Dunne was used to a male dominated space where it can be difficult to have your voice heard. She always had an interest in politics and when she saw a newspaper article about #SeeHerElected she decided to learn more.
Roseann’s interest in politics was driven by her awareness of a lack of female representation at county council level. “I don’t see anyone like myself on the council- they were just not on the same page as me- all the councillors I could see were all middle-aged white men from a middle-class background. Where are all the other voices, women, refugees and people from different ethnic backgrounds? So many of my friends are working parents with young children and they don’t see anyone like them in the council chambers,” said Roseann.
Not every woman wants to be a candidate in #LocalElections2024 but many women would be willing to help or give an hour of their time to help another woman to get elected. Roseann joined #SHESchool and signed up to workshops to learn more about politics because she was interested in becoming a campaign manager for a female candidate.
“So many women like myself could be willing to help another woman to get elected- that could be something like giving up an hour of your time to do a spread sheet for example, help with social media, book adverts or admin work to help another woman get elected. I was interested in seeing how we can create a machine or a mechanism to get more teams of women working together to get more women elected onto our county councils. I’m interested in setting up a Galway chapter for female candidates to connect with other women who are willing to help get them elected,” said Roseann.
A native of Galway city, Roseann now lives in Spiddal. She attended the Intro to Politics course and is currently enrolled on the SHESchool intensive course. With a background in rural development and social enterprise, Roseann signed up to SHESchool classes which she believes has allowed her to see how the PPN and other bodies are all connected and how they affect our community. “SHESchool has also shown me how I can affect change and what I can do locally to affect change,” she explained.
“I found SHESchool also provided a supportive network of women learning from women and supporting each other. I found the Guidebook to Running in the Local Elections very informative with lots of practical information. Women can very often be the ‘token’ female candidate on a party ticket and some women are perhaps afraid to run as an Independent but SHESchool can offer that support and network.
“Women often tend to do a lot of the social capital building in communities-they are involved in various boards and committees so getting into politics is just putting a formal structure on that. The irony is that women are often so busy actually running their communities that they haven’t time ‘to run’ for the community,” said Roseann.
If you would like to learn more about #SeeHerElected and the range of courses and political education events with SHESchool then log onto www.seeherelected.ie or ring 086 0320455 or email firstname.lastname@example.org