Fundraising tattoo initiative Project Mná to make highly-anticipated return

Cissa Spoerl shares the inspiration behind Project Mná, a queer womenn-led movement that donates 100% of their proceeds to charities.

Black and white photo of a Project Mná tattoo with a fine line floral design.
Image: Instagram @we.are.mna

Project Mná – a queer women-led movement that donates 100% of its proceeds to women’s charities – will be taking over All My Friends pub in Dublin for its tattoo fundraiser this weekend.

On November 26-27, the pub will be buzzing with guests getting tattoos and enjoying pints while queer vendors including GCN will be selling merch. Ahead of the event, GCN chatted with tattoo artist Cissa Spoerl about the inspiration behind Project Mná.

The idea for Project Mná started when Cissa’s partner, Ellie, asked her to tattoo a ‘mná’ design during lockdown. Mná is the Irish word for woman, and after her piece was finished, they agreed that everyone should have one.


Cissa started offering more mná tattoos in her studio, and Project Mná hosted an International Women’s Day event in March of this year. From there, interest in the project skyrocketed.

There is no singular definition of what mná is supposed to be, it’s an inclusive term of solidarity, and mná can include a range of queer identities. Cissa said, “To us, Mná is relevant to everyone, regardless of their gender identity.” When creating their designs, each artist considers what mná means for them and to everyone as a collective.


Project Mná benefits so many important charities, including women in direct provision, homeless organisations, women’s refuge and rape crisis centres, abortion rights groups, and organisations that support people in sex work. Reflecting on all the organisations that they’ve been able to support, Cissa said that the best part about the evolution of the project has been being able to support causes on a level that they otherwise wouldn’t have been able to.

This weekend, 50% of the profits are going to TENI, and the other 50% are going to the Wexford Rape Crisis Centre. Everyone who gets a tattoo at the event will be directly supporting these charities, and there will be donation buckets dotted around All My Friends as well.



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A post shared by M N Á (@we.are.mna)

Being able to actively support the people in our community who need it most is what inspires the artists to keep running Mná events. Cissa shared that being able to help women and marginalised communities through such artistic means feels particularly incredible, and the organisations they support always share a huge amount of gratitude and excitement.

When askedhow it feels to spot mná tattoos around town, Cissa said, “It really solidifies for us that what we’re doing is a meaningful and worthwhile project. It gives us such motivation to keep going and keep evolving Mná into what we think will be something huge.” Cissa loves tattooing and outside of the mná designs, she enjoys doing a lot of conceptual fine line and micro realism designs.

This weekend, GCN will be at All My Friends for Project Mná. Tattoo tickets sold out ahead of the event and a very limited number of walk-in spots will be available, but even if you’re not able to get a tattoo this time, you can enjoy the atmosphere and check out the merch stands with totes, t-shirts, hats, and stickers available for purchase.

© 2022 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.

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