Episode Twenty Five - The Kavanagh Sisters Skip to content

Episode Twenty Five


Mary Crilly, Founder and Director of Sexual Violence Centre Cork

‘Trigger Warning’ if you or someone you know has been affected by sexual abuse you can call the Sexual Violence Centre Cork on (01800) 496 496.

In today’s podcast we will be talking to Mary Crilly, Founder and Director of the Sexual Violence Centre Cork (SVCC). SVCC is a non-profit community organisation that opened its doors for the first time in 1982. The centre has been providing services to victims of sexual violence in Cork for over 38 years.

Mary is a formidable woman and her strength and resilience in advocating for women’s equality and the right for those who have experienced sexual violence or child abuse to receive appropriate services is something she has fought for, for over three decades.  She was the first in Cork to introduce counselling and support to women, men and teenagers who have experienced sexual violence or child sexual abuse.

Mary is a Member of the Irish National Observatory on VAW.  She holds an MA in Women’s Studies and a Diploma in The Psychology of Criminal Behaviour. In 2019, the University College Cork presented Mary with the ‘Inaugural Equality Award’ for her role in promoting equality diversity and inclusion with a focus on her work as director of the centre for sexual violence.  In 2000 she established OSS Cork (Domestic Violence Information Resource Centre) an NGO dedicated to providing supports to victims of Domestic Violence.  She is also the author of ‘Violence in Ireland. The Criminal Justice System – A Guide for Victims’.

In 2019 Mary was diagnosed with stage three bowel cancer and following a major operation and months of intense treatment she is feeling fighting fit. In her own words “I am more determined than ever to fight for survivors of sexual abuse”.

Mary talks about how she feels about TUSLA’s introduction of their latest guidelines for stress testing victims of sexual abuse by their alleged abuser and what she feels needs to happen next. Meeting Mary was something we will not forget in a hurry. She is indeed a force to be reckoned with.

Take Care

Joyce, June and Paula

Website Designed by Paula Kavanagh