I am delighted to welcome you to the website of the Embassy of Ireland in Sierra Leone. It is an honour for me to have taken up duty as Ambassador of Ireland to Sierra Leone and Liberia in September 2019.
The Government of Ireland first opened a development cooperation office in Sierra Leone in 2005. This was upgraded to an Embassy in 2014, a decision which reflects our commitment to deepening and strengthening the relationship between Sierra Leone and Ireland.
Ireland's development cooperation in Sierra Leone is focussed on four key areas: Nutrition, Gender, Education and Governance.
Our strategic priorities are guided by A Better World: Ireland's Policy for International Development and our recently published Mission Strategy for 2019-2023 identifies four core outcomes for our work:
• that women and children have improved nutritional status;
• that women and girls are empowered to realise their potential and their rights;
• that more girls access and benefit from quality education;
• and that citizens – in particular women - are more empowered to engage with inclusive and accountable democratic institutions and processes.
Our team in Freetown is committed to working as a constructive and collaborative partner to the Government of Sierra Leone in support of the aims of the Medium-Term National Development Plan (2019-2023). To this end we also work closely with Civil Society partners.
There is a vibrant Irish community here. Irish Missionaries first came to Sierra Leone over 150 years ago and their contribution is built upon to this day by the Irish people who continue to come here, in many cases to work with civil society and international organisations.
Our team at the embassy provides consular services to the Irish community. We also work together to build cultural and economic links between our two countries.
I hope you will learn more about our work on the pages of our website and I invite you to follow us on Twitter at @IrlEmbFreetown where you'll see regular updates on our activities.
We look forward to meeting and working with you here in beautiful Sierra Leone!
Céad Míle Fáilte and Kabɔ,
Lesley Ní Bhriain
Lesley Ní Bhriain took up duty as the Ambassador of Ireland to the Republic of Sierra Leone in September 2019.
She joined the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade in 2001 and was assigned to the Political Division. She has held HQ assignments in the Development Cooperation Division and Evaluation and Audit Unit. She has served postings to Ireland’s embassies in Copenhagen and Berlin and most recently was deputy head of mission at the Partnership for Peace Liaison Office in Brussels
Prior to entering the diplomatic service, Lesley worked as an accountant in Dublin’s International Financial Services Centre.
She holds a degree in Germanic Languages from Trinity College, Dublin and a Masters in Public Management from the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin.
Lesley is married with two children and hails from Donnycarney in Dublin.