Avila Kilmurray


Avila Kilmurray is the Migration and Peacebuilding Executive at The Social Change Initiative, a role which supports work with the Migrant Learning Exchange Programme and learning on peace building. Avila has worked in the community sector and philanthropy in Northern Ireland since 1975.

She has particular interest in women’s issues and anti-poverty work and was a founder member of the Northern Ireland Women’s Coalition. Over the period 1994-2014 Avila was Director of the Community Foundation for Northern Ireland which prioritised support for community action and peace building. 

The Community Foundation managed EU PEACE Programme measures for the re-integration of politically motivated ex-prisoners as well as the victims/survivors of violence. It also supported locally-based activism around community issues and areas of social need. Avila has written extensively on the contribution that philanthropy can make to social justice, peace building and conflict transformation. 

Avila is a member of the Foundations for Peace Network and serves on an Expert Advisory Committee for IFIT (Institute for Integrated Transitions). She is a Board member of the International Fund for Ireland (IFI), the St. Stephen’s Green Trust and is on the Northern Ireland Advisory Committee of the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust. Avila is a Visiting Professor with the Transitional Justice Institute (Ulster University) and is author of Community Action in a Contested Society: The Story of Northern Ireland (Lang 2017).

Avila Kilmurray


Closing Panel: A Global Arc Toward Belonging
Belonging without othering is a radical new proposition to create a shared future for all including our earth. Where might belonging without othering, as a new political, social, and spiritual frame, take us next on the bending of the arc and beyond? In March 1968, Martin Luther King, Jr famously proclaimed that “the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” What is our global trajectory of equality, peacebuilding, and human rights, and how does belonging add to that? How might we integrate and build new norms that advance belonging? As we face a warming planet and...