Formed in the year 2000, our mission is ‘to support asylum seekers, refugees and other migrants; and to facilitate their integration into the community.’


Killarney Asylum Seekers Initiative (KASI) was set up in the year 2000 by the Parish Council of St. Mary’s Cathedral in response to the government’s new programme of dispersal of people seeking asylum in Ireland. Members of the initiative also included representatives of two other churches in Killarney – the Methodist Church and Church of Ireland, as well as people from other community groups and individuals, including local people and people seeking asylum.

Three years later, KASI received funding from the EU through the European Refugee Fund to enable the group to operate a professional drop-in service and resource centre for asylum seekers, and to employ a Project Coordinator. As the work of KASI has evolved and developed, KASI’s support and services extended to refugees and other migrants in the wider Killarney region.

To reflect this evolving range of support, KASI has since changed its name to Killarney Immigrant Support Centre, with ‘KASI’ kept as its legal name. In recognition of KASI’s work, the organisation was awarded a 2021 IPB Pride of Place Award in the Community Resilience category. This all-island competition recognises improvements made by local communities to create civic pride in their area.

From the spring of 2022, thousands of people fleeing the war in Ukraine arrived in Killarney. KASI immediately responded to help meet the needs of new arrivals, and continues to provide tailored support services to people who have fled the conflict. KASI is also a member of the County Emergency Response group, led by Kerry County Council. This work continues under the backdrop of KASI’s ongoing work – to support all asylum seekers, refugees and other migrants in the area and to promote their integration into the local community.


  • To provide a multi functional space for drop-in services, meetings, coordination, training and intercultural events
  • To provide information relevant to the needs of the service users
  • To plan and implement various activities including; education, language support, health, social and intercultural events
  • To provide support to individuals and families in Direct Provision
  • To undertake awareness raising work in the local community on international protection and general immigration issues; and engage in advocacy work
  • To liaise with local agencies through referrals or joints initiatives and to enhance service provision
  • Network with other relevant agencies and service providers, sharing best practice and contributing to policy development


Direct Support

  • Marilyn Catapat-Counihan – KASI General Manager
  • Katarzyna Zbik – Development Worker
  • Antonina Sushchenko – Development Worker
  • Linda O’Sullivan – Development Worker
  • Brian Vandamme – Development Worker
  • Caroline Kileen – After-School Support, Drishane, Millstreet, Cork

Social Enterprise

  • Aleksandra Piotrowska – Social Enterprise Manager
  • Majella O’Sullivan – KASI Charity Shop and School Meals Project


  • Sheila Casey – Chairperson
  • Mary Fitzgerald – Deputy Chair
  • Pat O’Brien – Treasurer
  • Julianne Prendevile – Director
  • Bernadette Osterloh – Director
  • Sr. Joan Crowley – Director
  • Michael Gleeson – Director
  • Huda Albayati – Director


  • European Union through Asylum Migration and Integration Funds, administered by Dept. of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth
  • HSE – South
  • Dept. of Community and Rural Development, through Community Services Programme of POBAL


  • One Foundation
  • St. Brendan’s Trust
  • Little Company of Mary
  • Ireland Funds