Ability Focus Clients & Testimonials

Ability Focus Clients & Testimonials

The Ability Focus team are proud to have worked with many progressive organisations in public, semi-state and private sectors who are committed to best practice workplace disability inclusion. We have worked to deliver disability awareness training initiatives from small groups to large scale companywide training for Irish businesses, global brands, multinationals, government departments and public bodies.

Here is a snapshot of some of our clients:

• An Post
• Central Statistics Office
• Johnson & Johnson
• Bord Bia
• Fidelity International
• Department of Social Protection
• daa (Dublin Airport Authority)
• Bank of Ireland
• CNP Santander Insurance
• Vodafone
• Sport Ireland
• Tifco Hotel Group
• Limerick City & County Council
• National Concert Hall
• Indeed
• National Council for Special Education (NCSE)

Client Testimonials

Please find below a selection of testimonials from organisations we’re proud to have worked with:

Sport Ireland

"Ability Focus has been an invaluable partner in advancing Sport Ireland's commitment to disability inclusion in the workplace. Stephen and his team have provided exceptional services that have directly impacted our workers at Sport Ireland. From delivering disability awareness training on topics like neurodiversity to guiding us in implementing disability-inclusive recruitment practices, Ability Focus has been instrumental in enhancing our organisation's inclusivity.

Stephen has not only designed and delivered bespoke training sessions but has also provided invaluable insights into niche areas related to diversity in the workplace. Additionally, his support in ensuring our job descriptions are inclusive for people with disabilities has been invaluable.

We extend our sincere gratitude to Stephen and the entire team at Ability Focus for their dedication and commitment. The engaging and memorable content delivered by Stephen has received overwhelmingly positive feedback from our workers, leaving them better equipped to support disabled individuals in both our workplace the communities that we work with.

Thank you so much, Stephen, and team @ Ability Focus, for your outstanding support and partnership."

- Emma Ward, HR Manager, Sport Ireland

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Central Statistics Office (CSO)

"As part of our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion programme, Stephen Kelly from Ability Focus provided Disability Awareness Training to the staff of the Central Statistics Office in early October, which was well received in the organisation. Stephen understood our brief and was very easy to deal with. The training was delivered through an engaging and interactive presentation to a large audience and feedback from staff was very positive."

- Deirdre O’Reardon, Equality, Diversity & Inclusion, DLO. Central Statistics Office

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An Post

"Ability Focus have played a pivotal role in advancing An Post’s Disability Inclusion agenda. From March 2022 to March 2023, Stephen designed and delivered bespoke Disability Awareness, Reasonable Accommodation, and Inclusive Recruitment training to over 1,000 An Post employees across our 3 business units. The feedback has been incredibly positive thanks to the engaging & memorable content delivered by Stephen. An Post colleagues have benefitted greatly, and are better equipped to provide support to disabled people in work and in our communities. Thank you so much Stephen & team @ Ability Focus! "

- Danielle Bouchier, Diversity & Inclusion Manager, An Post

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Tifco Hotel Group

"Tifco Hotel Group collaborated with Ability Focus from June to September 2023 to deliver a number of Disability Awareness training sessions for our staff members. Training provided by Stephen Kelly and his team is of excellent quality, very informative and engaging. Feedback from our staff members who attended training was extremely positive. Diversity and inclusion are a big focus within Tifco Hotel Group and Disability Awareness training has played a significant role in supporting our staff in that area and growing their knowledge. We would highly recommend Ability Focus as an excellent training provider.

- Patrycja Zabawska, Group Learning & Development Manager, Tifco Hotel Group

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"FINEOS partnered with Ability Focus who delivered Disability Awareness training to our employees. This collaboration has played a pivotal role in driving disability awareness and fostering a culture of inclusion within FINEOS. The training led by Stephen Kelly was informative and equipped our team with practical insights and actionable strategies to create a more inclusive workplace. We wholeheartedly recommend Ability Focus to any company seeking to champion inclusivity and make meaningful strides towards a more equitable future. "

- Breda Donlon, Head of Organisational L&D, Fineos

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Bord Bia

"Bord Bia is committed to keeping disability inclusion forefront of our business, and one way we do this is by partnering with Ability Focus for a number of training sessions which are always well received by staff. Stephen’s sessions are highly engaging, very informative and clear. His expertise and passion for the area really shines through in his sessions and attendees as a result feel more knowledgeable and better equipped to engage with persons with disabilities. Ability Focus play a pivotal role in raising awareness of disability within our organisation. "

- Katy Burton, TA/HR, Bord Bia

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"I-RES is the leading provider of quality private rental accommodation in Ireland, with a hugely diverse resident base. Conscious that 1 in 7 people living in Ireland have a recognised disability, we wanted to strengthen our services by providing our full team with Disability Awareness training. We were delighted to work with Ability Focus, whose expertise, advice and contemporary approach to disability awareness training was very well received by the team. We now have a better understanding of Ireland's most diverse group, and have new skills to support our colleagues and our residents in their homes"

- Georgina Penny, Learning & Inclusion Manager, I-Res

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Limerick City & County Council

"We here in Limerick City & County Council cannot recommend Ability Focus enough. Autism Awareness training was delivered to all our departments across the organisation and was a tremendous success. Feedback from staff was so positive we even offered it out to our community groups to take part as we felt it was important that they get the same opportunity to have this training like ourselves. Stephen and Nadia were both so professional and the training was effective and to the point without ever feeling heavy or overwhelming. Thank you Stephen and Nadia for everything!

- Jade Ryan, A/Staff Officer, Limerick City & County Council

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The Health Research Board

"As part of the HRB’s disability action plan and equality, diversity and inclusion initiatives, we held organisation wide disability awareness training provided by Stephen from Ability Focus in early 2022. Stephen presents the facts and figures in a captivating way and has a great depth of knowledge in the area. It’s no surprise that feedback from staff has been very positive and people are still talking about the training two months on. We look forward to working with Stephen and the Ability Focus team through 2022 and onwards."

- Jess Gaughran, Human Resources, HRB

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CNP Santander Insurance

"Diversity and Inclusion has always been a core focus at CNP Santander Insurance, and we take seriously our duty to our diverse staff and customers. In 2022 we committed to become more accessible to staff, future staff and our customers with disabilities. In March 2022 we delivered with the support of Ability Focus four 90-minute Disability Awareness training programmes across the organisation. The training delivered by Stephen Kelly was excellent and warmly received by the entire organisation, someone even went so far as to say 'it was the best training I have received during my entire time in the company."

- Graeme Morrison, Strategic Development Manager and Chair CSR Committee.

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National Council for Special Education (NCSE)

"Ability Focus offers an excellent Disability Awareness training package with an easy to use online booking system. Stephen’s depth of knowledge around disability and inclusion is very evident when he delivers a session. He developed and delivered a specific suite of training for our staff and the benefits are far reaching for an organisation like ours where awareness and inclusion for people with disabilities is at the core of everything we do. Highly recommended"

- Mary Curran, Human Resources. NCSE

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daa (Dublin Airport Authority)

"In partnering with Ability Focus to help us progress our diversity and inclusion strategy, Stephen Kelly has delivered a number of workshops for us including building inclusive recruitment practices and more recently disability awareness training with the wider HR community. Feedback from the teams has been excellent. Our next step is to roll this awareness training out to the wider organisation and implement a number of actions to better support employees with disabilities. Stephen has huge knowledge and experience in this area and shares his expertise and passion for driving progress in a highly engaging and compelling manner. I would have no hesitation in recommending him to any organisation and I look forward to continuing our work with Stephen through 2022."

- Siobhan Winters, Head of Talent Acquisition. Daa

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Personal Injuries Assessment Board (PIAB)

"In PIAB we don’t just accept difference - we embrace it, we support it, and we thrive on it for the benefit of our employees and our service delivery. We know it takes people with different ideas, strengths, interests, ability and backgrounds to make our organisation succeed. In 2021 Ability Focus delivered three training sessions on Disability Awareness to all PIAB staff. The feedback from colleagues after completing the training was that they felt empowered and more confident in supporting people with disabilities in both their personal and professional lives. Ability Focus’s training it this area is considered, interactive and beneficial to anyone who attends. "

- Ríona Hegarty, Human Resources Manager, PIAB


Citybreak Apartments

"We recently completed Disability Awareness training with Ability Focus, and all staff highly recommend it. It is an excellent program which helped us all expand our knowledge of disability. So much so that now we all feel better equipped to assist our customers and staff both present and in the future."

- Jonathan Drake, Director, Citybreak Apartments.

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Bank of Ireland

"Stephen, thank you so much for providing Remote Disability Awareness Training to our colleagues at Bank of Ireland. Your natural approach, extensive subject knowledge and passion was abundantly evident throughout each and every session which made the training enjoyable and engaging.

The knowledge gained by us around the core aspects of disability, especially on the topic of Legislation & Reasonable Accommodations, gave us greater confidence when engaging with colleagues and to create an inclusive and diverse place to work where our colleagues can be themselves and perform to their full potential "

- Alan Wright, Accessibility Optimisation Lead, Bank of Ireland.

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National Concert Hall

"The National Concert Hall Operations team undertook Disability Awareness Training on Zoom with Ability Focus. Each module proved to be engaging, thought provoking and informative. The NCH prides itself on outstanding customer service and world class music, Ability Focus proved that they too can hit all the right notes."

Barry Walsh Head of Personnel & Operations, National Concert Hall.

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Legal Aid Board

"Ability Focus provided Disability Awareness Training to our staff in the Legal Aid Board earlier in this year. As a manager in the Research, Learning and Development Unit, I am always seeking staff feedback. All of our staff who attended this course found it very engaging and thought provoking. So much so, that we arranged more sessions. We are very thankful that Ability Focus have been able to play a very important role in raising awareness in the area of Disability."

Brian Edwards Manager. Research, Learning & Development Unit, Legal Aid Board.

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Screen Skills Ireland

"One of Screen Skills Ireland's core values is to drive positive change within the sector through support for inclusivity, diversity, transparency and fairness in work. In support of this aim we were delighted to work with Ability Focus, Animation Skillnet and Animation Ireland to deliver Disability Awareness Training for the Animation sector. With team members from several of Ireland's most successful animation studios in attendance we believe this training was a successful first step in the direction of positive change."

Sorcha Scully, Skills Executive, Screen Skills Ireland.

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Clark Recruitment

"We recently took part in online Disability Awareness Training ran by Ability Focus and presented by Stephen. This was a highly engaging and informative training session. The learnings from our training are so valuable and gave us greater knowledge and comprehension of disabilities and legislation. It also gave us confidence in ensuring we promote our business as a diverse and inclusive environment for our people and for those we engage with daily. I highly recommend this training for anyone working in the recruitment sector. "

Stephen Farrell O’Callaghan, Director, Clark.

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"Staff at Kingfisher recently undertook Disability Awareness training with Ability Focus. This training focused mainly on our public facing staff with the aim of ensuring a greater understanding of disability when dealing with our patrons. Stephen delivered the training the most engaging manner, was so knowledgeable and encouraged great interaction throughout all training sessions. The staff loved the training and all highly recommend! "

Simeone Rodica, Manager, Kingfisher Dublin.

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Participant Testimonials

“Hi Nadia! I wanted to email to say thanks so much for this morning’s training. As a disabled woman with an invisible disability I often feel marginalised here at work and I really could see the wheels turning in everyone’s head when you were talking about diversity in disability. It’s not just the physical!! Thanks a lot. ”

- Private sector colleague, financial services

“Stephen, a huge thank you for yesterday’s disability awareness course. Time flew and I really think this type training should be completed by everyone, not only at our office, but in every industry. We had a Teams meeting this morning and everyone spoke so positively about your training style. Thanks so much. We all agreed you made a real difference yesterday.”

- E. Dempsey, L&D Professional

“Excellent course. Very informative. I have a teenage son with Aspergers. Your insight was interesting and invaluable. The more people who understand the unique challenges facing children (and increasingly adults) who have autism the more balanced a society we are helping to create.”

- Autism Awareness Training participant, public sector

“I thought this morning really was excellent! Nadia is a fantastic facilitator and I actually found both trainings so light they’re not overloaded with too much info or anything it’s great. Feedback from everyone here is super positive so thanks for these Autism Awareness programmes!”

- Autism Awareness Training participant, public sector

“I’m really surprised at how much I didn’t know about Reasonable Accommodation!!! As a HR business Partner with well over 20 years’ experience I knew I was lacking in knowledge about reasonable accommodation but didn’t expect to learn that much today. Stephen, I have a feeling your clear and articulate delivery style and breadth of knowledge in this area will be in high demand over the coming years! Well done.”

- G. O’ Sullivan, HR Professional, private sector

“Hi Stephen. I just wanted to email to let you know a group of us were speaking together yesterday after your training programme and to say everyone was impressed would be an understatement! It had such an impact. Well done! It has completely changed our view on disability”

- Niamh D. HR Team, public sector

“Our training facilitator was excellent in her delivery today. She had such a natural way of speaking and was very easy to listen to. Her information on how to communicate respectfully was so simple yet was so interesting. Thanks!”

- SurveyMonkey Feedback

“I have previously completed disability awareness training before, both on site as well as using eLearning modules. The training we have just completed with Ability Focus was so fresh and modern in its delivery that we all walked away really feeling we learned a lot while actually enjoying it. Thanks to the facilitator who was so engaging in his delivery. Will be recommending this programme to more colleagues.”

- Simon C. Manager, public sector

“The trainer was very passionate and seemed really invested in the area. Hands down the best online training programme I have attended”

- Public sector organisation internal survey

“This course really is 10/10! The presentation was delivered in such a clear manner and I learned so much. Stephen really is a fantastic trainer and over 4 hours there wasn’t a moment where my interest waned. It wasn’t only informative, but really enjoyable. This was the best training programme I have participated in my working life.”

- Sorcha P. HR Professional.

“In all my years working here this is the first time I have had disability awareness training. It was so clear and easy to understand and I think it should be rolled out to everyone”

- SurveyMonkey Feedback

“I consulted Ability Focus for advice on a local charity issue. Stephen is incredibly professional, knowledgeable and approachable. I really enjoyed working with him and he went above and beyond in his contribution to our requirement. Highly recommend Ability Focus if you have ANY questions about disability employment or training.”

- Hannah N. Charity Worker.

“Recently completed the Live Online Disability Awareness Training and would strongly recommend it. I felt the real benefit of the program is that it has universal application irrespective of the working environment you find yourself in. I genuinely think this will soon become a minimum requirement for all employees whose firms take their responsibilities in this area seriously.”

- Niall H. Financial Advisor.

“Questions were encouraged and answers attentively listened to. Stephen is such an engaging trainer and his passion for the subject really is evident and inspiring. No suggestions for improvement”

- SurveyMonkey Feedback

“The programme wasn’t informal, but still felt like we were having a continual conversation, rather than a lecture. Real life examples made it relatable to everyday life. It was informative and eye-opening but not like a lecture. Stephen is an amazing trainer, and I loved his conversational style.”

- Angela K. HR Professional.

“I’ve just completed Live Online Disability Awareness Training with Stephen Kelly and Ability Focus. I can honestly say this programme was an eye opener for me; the diversity within disability, the importance of inclusion and the benefit to everyone, both employers and job seekers of greater inclusion really stood out. I really would recommend this programme.”

- Neil S. Recruitment Professional.

“I was fairly reluctant when I knew we had to do disability training, but I’ve actually just enjoyed that course more than I ever thought I would. Stephen’s style is so engaging and he’s great at changing the pace over our course. It was really educational but also very easy for all of us to relate to as he was constantly giving experiences from his life. I especially liked the focus on reasonable accommodation. We’re all recommending Stephen to come back and do another training course to colleagues asap. Brilliant!”

- Dermot N. In House Legal Counsel.

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