The Caroline Foundation

On 25 March 2013 Caroline Dwyer-Hickey, wife, daughter, and sister, passed away aged 35 after a nine year battle with cancer. Caroline's passing left all those who loved her with a huge sense of loss - not least we, her school community, of St Brigid's School, Glasnevin, Dublin 11.

Those who knew and loved Caroline would be adamant that she not be defined by her illness but by the full and exciting life she enjoyed during her short time with us. She loved her chosen profession as a primary school teacher, was an intrepid traveller, flourished as an actor with the Dalkey Players and was known particularly for her faithfulness to family, friends and colleagues.

Caroline grew up in Greystones in Co Wicklow, and was a graduate of University College Dublin and Marino Institute of Education. She taught in St Brigid's for the whole of her teaching career which began in September 2001.

As a teacher Caroline was exceptional. Her wicked sense of fun and ready smile endeared her to pupils and she showed immense commitment and dedication to her job. Her meticulous lesson planning was the stuff of legend, as were the games she created to make learning fun. Caroline loved coming to work, continuing to teach right up to last October when she finally had to take time out. Her classroom was always buzzing and she had the
special gift of giving the children a great belief in themselves.

She also gave much to the school outside of the classroom through the Green Schools Committee, school productions and the talent shows she organised. Her love of drama and her creativity were gifts which she shared
constantly with us.

As a member of staff Caroline was much more than just a colleague, she was a true friend. She shared our good times and our bad, was always the one to offer help when needed and would never forget special occasions or birthdays - her texts were always guaranteed to arrive!

Caroline was one of those people about whom you could truly say that she made people's lives better - and in doing so looked for no praise and enjoyed every minute of it.

She was the one who remembered our children's names and little details about them. She was kind, patient, caring, funny, and exceptionally smart - without needing anyone to know it. Her thoughtfulness and faithfulness to friends along with her smile and ready laugh are always remembered when staff past and present get together.

We, her colleagues, wish to pay tribute to the enormous contribution Caroline made to our schooL Her absence leaves a great void but we continue to be inspired by her. We feel very privileged to have known and worked with such a special person.

Caroline was predeceased by her mum, Fidelma, and is survived by her husband Rónán, her parents Dermod and Helen, her brother Denis and a wide circle of family and friends who miss her greatly every day. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a hanam dílis.

The Caroline Foundation

The Caroline Foundation has been established in memory of Caroline to support the work of Professor John Crown and the Cancer Clinical Research Trust (CCRT - see for more information).

Based in St Vincent's Hospital but also operating from Dublin City University and University College Dublin, the CCRT is devoted to furthering the developments of new treatments for cancer. It supports research both in the lab and at the cancer patient's bed-side, an integrated programme of investigation.

Such lifesaving work comes at a high financial cost and The Caroline Foundation is hoping to help by fully funding
an additional research scientist in the CCRT team. Having benefited from clinical trials in both Ireland and the US
Caroline was a public advocate for cancer research, firmly believing that research will one day find a cure. 

The Caroline Foundation is built on, and is testimony to that advocacy, that hope and faith in the work of the CCRT.

If you, or your school, would like to  support The Caroline Foundation in any way we would be delighted to hear from you.

For any further information please visit or  contact Helen O'Sullivan-Dwyer at