Our staff, advisers and volunteers are based in the UK and US. Our UK trustees and US directors are responsible for strategy and governance, while our staff manage the international projects, fundraising and communications, and implement our strategy. We are greatly supported by our founder, who raises funds, awareness, and writes and edits materials. We are indebted to our volunteers, whose contributions include designing and delivering our counselling training programme in Uganda, training the staff in our Kigali workplace creche, selling products made by our project beneficiaries, designing promotional materials, providing business training to our beneficiaries, and helping with research. Our project partners are talented individuals, deeply committed to improving and serving their communities in challenging circumstances. We work with them on a daily basis, and they never fail to inspire us.
Annabel Harris, ‘Chief Executive Officer’
Annabel Harris joined Network for Africa in February 2011 and is responsible for strengthening its infrastructure, including fundraising, budgets, strategy, communications, governance and growth. She started her career at Amnesty International, where she set up their information office and managed their annual human rights journalism awards ceremony. She subsequently took up her post as CEO of the human rights charity Reprieve, joining in its early days and seeing it through a period of rapid growth during which it enjoyed a high media profile. She started working in international development when she was responsible for children’s charity Jubilee Action’s fundraising and communications. Annabel is particularly motivated by the difference that Network for Africa can bring to communities suffering the trauma of conflict and war.
Sophie McCann, ‘Executive Director’
Sophie McCann began working for Network for Africa as Projects Coordinator in January 2008. She is based in the London office and coordinates and manages the activities of Network for Africa in Rwanda and northern Uganda, working with our local partners to develop and expand their work. Her particular interests lie in the key role that women, girls and youth need to play to encourage equitable and sustainable development. She is also a passionate advocate of gender equality in all of the work in which Network for Africa is involved. Sophie read history at Newcastle University after which she completed a Masters degree in Conflict, Security and Development at King’s College London.
Catherine Hodge, ‘Programmes, Development and Research Manager’
Catherine joined the staff in 2017 and is based in the London office, where she manages the monitoring and evaluation, research and development surrounding Network for Africa’s projects. She graduated from the University of Cambridge in 2016, with a degree in Theology and Religious Studies, before studying for an MSc in African Studies with Health at University College London. Catherine has a particular interest in the integration of mental health care and services into development strategies and in building the capacity of project partners.
Rebecca Tinsley, Founder and UK Trustee
Rebecca Tinsley founded Network for Africa in an effort to help survivors of genocide rebuild their lives. Rebecca has a law degree from the London School of Economics. She is a former BBC politics reporter, and she stood for election to the UK parliament twice during the 1980s. She is a freelance journalist and a novelist; three of her novels have been published. Together with her husband Henry, she was asked by President and Mrs Carter to start the Carter Centre UK. She is on the advisory council of Bennington College, Vermont, and Antioch University in Santa Barbara, California. She is also a trustee of the Bosnia Support Fund.
David Russell, UK Trustee
David is Founder and Director of The Social Enterprise, which advises an array of charities and social businesses. From 2009 to 2013, David served as Director of Survivors Fund (SURF), which represents and supports survivors of the Rwandan genocide. He first began working with SURF in 2004 as a consultant, in which capacity he continues to support the charity today. David is also a Trustee of the Congregation of Jacob Synagogue, SPID Theatre Company and Charities Advisory Trust.
Frida Critien, UK Trustee
Frida is an experienced strategic communications professional, with experience of managing a wide range of internal and external campaigns. Currently a Global Communications Manager at Unilever she is responsible for engaging employees across the world with the company mission to drive sustainable growth. Previously the Deputy Managing Director of a medium sized PR company, Frida managed the communications on a number of high profile accounts including the Girlguiding UK Centenary and the launch of King’s College London’s largest ever fundraising campaign. In addition she oversaw all the agency’s day-to-day operations, including setting and controlling the budget and overseeing all client-servicing, HR, and recruitment matters.
Rosalind Gater, UK Trustee
Roz began her career as an English teacher with Teach First. Between 2006 and 2013 she taught at challenging schools in London, Kigali and Johannesburg. She also worked in the NGO sector, initially for Network for Africa in its early years in Rwanda and later for Equal Education, an organisation based in Cape Town that campaigns to end educational inequality. In August 2013 she joined the Education Policy Team at the Department for International Development (DFID) and relocated to Nigeria in August 2014.
David Gye, UK Trustee
David is the Treasurer of N4A. David recently retired as an adviser on financial aspects of the energy and infrastructure sectors, working with government and private sectors worldwide. He became independent in 2009 after a 25-year career with Morgan Stanley and other investment banks, based in London and New York. He has advised on projects in the US, UK, wider Europe, Australia, Asia and the Middle East. Most recently he has taken the lead in advising on very large-scale green energy projects in Europe. David’s early career was as an army officer and then for 8 years a civil engineer. He has a degree in engineering from Cambridge University (1969) and is a Sloan Fellow of the London Business School (1984). David has published scholarly articles on mediaeval architecture in Iran and is currently (but slowly) writing a book on travel and travel structures in that country. He travels widely and has a house in Fez, Morocco. He is currently a trustee of the Lynams Educational Foundation, the NFL Trust and the Iran Society, of which he is Hon Treasurer. Until recently he was Hon Treasurer of the British Institute of Persian Studies. David was appointed as a trustee on 7 November 2016.
Jemma Hogwood, UK Trustee
Jemma is a clinical psychologist trained at University College London and for the last 6 years, has been working for Survivors Fund in Rwanda, supporting survivors of the 1994 Rwandan genocide. She managed several projects with a counselling and mental health element including a programme supporting mothers with children born of rape and a telephone helpline providing counselling and legal support for student survivors. She currently offers therapy for international people living in Rwanda and supervises a number of psychologists working within school and universities in Kigali. She also provides some research support to the Centre for Mental Health at the University of Rwanda.
Dr. Barbara Bauer, Counselling Team
Barbara is a psychologist who has been involved in the training of lay volunteers and mental health professionals in the treatment of trauma since 1995. As a member of the International Centre for Psychosocial Trauma, she made numerous trips to Bosnia, Kosovo, Russia, Pakistan, and Palestine. In 2003, Dr. Bauer completed a five-month mission in Nepal with Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors without Borders), where her assignment was to train volunteers in trauma interventions to help women victims of violence, including those caught up in the civil war. In February 2005, she went to Sri Lanka and Indonesia to train tsunami aid workers. In coordination with the Tinsley Charitable Trust, Dr. Bauer has made six trips to Rwanda to train genocide survivors in trauma counselling. She has made seven trips to Patongo, Northern Uganda where, as part of Network for Africa, she has trained peer counsellors to work with former child soldiers and community members traumatised by the LRA.
Shelly Evans, Counselling Team
Shelly Evans is a Licensed Professional Counsellor with a Master’s in Counselling Psychology. She currently resides in Columbia, Missouri. Shelly has been a volunteer mental health trainer with Network for Africa in northern Uganda since 2008. Prior to becoming involved with N4A, she lived and worked in South Korea and China. She has been a board member of Step Up, An American Association of Rwandan Women and has travelled to Rwanda multiple times as a mental health trainer. At home in Columbia, Shelly works in a primary care setting with patients who have just begun risky substance use. She also volunteers as a group facilitator in a support group for women who have fled situations involving domestic violence. Shelly’s primary clinical interests include cross-cultural counselling along with trauma and its emotional consequences.
Christa Bennett, Director of Network for Africa USA
Christa helped start Network for Africa in 2006. The following year, she oversaw the successful application for non-profit status for Network for Africa US. Christa’s passion is creating communities where all have opportunities to thrive, and she continues working with nonprofits that offer health and education services. She received her Master’s Degree in International Relations from King’s College London.
Rosie Cowell, USA Trustee
Rosie joined Network for Africa in 2010 and is the chair of the US Board. She is an Assistant Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences at University of Massachusetts Amherst. She received her PhD from the University of Oxford and her Bachelor’s degree from the University of Cambridge. Rosie is trained in computational cognitive neuroscience, animal neuropsychology, cognitive psychology, and functional magnetic resonance imaging.
Stacey Lydon, USA Trustee
Stacey currently manages scholarships for University of California students studying abroad and leads efforts to increase participation of underrepresented students in international education. She has previously led international education programmes in China, Costa Rica, India and Spain. In 2009 she helped coordinate Network for Africa’s summer volunteer programme in Rwanda. She has a Bachelor’s degree in International Economics and a Master’s degree in International Development.
Martha Elliot, USA Trustee
Martha has been a journalist for almost 40 years. She has produced hundreds of programs for Public Broadcasting Service, written books, run a newspaper and won awards for her work. She taught at Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and at Laguna Blanca School. Martha helped create Youth Network for Africa, a branch comprising students who have raised funds and awareness.
Tina Kistler, USA Trustee
Tina is an Associate Professor of Communications at Santa Barbara City College and co-director of the Social Science Pathways Project. She is also an adjunct instructor in liberal studies at Antioch University in Santa Barbara. Tina has served as the faculty advisor to The Students’ Coalition at SBCC, working with students to advocate for social justice and human rights issues. Tina received her Master’s degree in speech communication from the University of California, Santa Barbara.