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Our Practice Areas

Our programmes have a demonstrable and positive impact on improving children's lives and realisation of their rights, and are globally respected for being high quality, evidence based and scalable.

Charlotte Balfour-Poole, Director of Humanitarian Technical Unit

Charlotte Balfour-Poole

Director of Humanitarian Technical Unit

Charlotte has worked with Save the Children for the past 12 years in a broad range of capacities; working on UK development education programming, overseas and in the UK, as a senior humanitarian education advisor both deploying to emergency situations (natural disasters, conflict zones and complex emergencies) to develop, establish and manage emergency education response programmes as well as leading the coordination of the Education cluster.

Our priorities
The Humanitarian Technical Unit is comprised of four thematic strategies including Child Protection, Cash and Economic Programming, Education and Humanitarian Evidence Effectiveness and Accountability teams.

Our Key reports
Edtech for learning in emergencies and displaced settings
More and Better 
Investment for education in emergencies

Hannah Snowden, Senior Humanitarian Education Adviser

Hannah Snowden

Senior Humanitarian Education Adviser

Hannah leads SCUK’s humanitarian education work and manages a team of advisers and Humanitarian Surge Teams.
Hannah designed, managed and implemented the Education in Emergencies programmes for the United Nations and NGOs across Africa and Asia.

Our priorities
We work towards timely, quality education provision in humanitarian contexts by:
· Providing technical assistance and Humanitarian Surge Teams to country offices
· Undertaking Education in Emergencies Working Group research
· Testing innovative projects and approaches
· Influencing Education in Emergencies funding mechanisms.

Our Key reports
What do Children Want in Times of Crises
EdTech for Learning in Emergencies
Global Education Cluster Strategic Plan

Dominic Courage Head of Emergency Cash and Economic Programming Unit

Dominic Courage

Head of Emergency Cash and Economic Programming Unit

Dominic leads the Emergency Cash and Economic Programming Unit. He moved into the humanitarian sector after nine years as a Civil Engineer / Project Manager. Since Joining Save the Children in 2012 he has worked as a roving Shelter Advisor and then led the Shelter and Construction Team including emergency deployments to the Syria Regional Response, Ebola Response, Nepal Earthquake and Rohingya Crisis.

Our priorities
To drive organisational and sector-wide institutionalisation of better quality food security, livelihoods and cash / market-based programming in humanitarian contexts. We aim to support all sectors to make better use of cash and market modalities and provide thought leadership on best practice and collaboration across the sector.

Katherine Williamson

Katherine Williamson

Senior Humanitarian Child Protection Advisor

Katherine leads the Humanitarian child protection team. She has worked in the humanitarian sector for 18 years, including ten years delivering child protection programming in conflicts and disasters and 8 years as a consultant or advisor.

Our priorities

Our team works to provide thought leadership and technical support for child protection programming in conflicts and disasters.  We play a key role in shaping and implementing the programme strategy for the Protecting Children in Conflict Centenary Commitment. Our team includes specific expertise on mental health and psychosocial support, sexual and gender-based violence, family separation, children and armed conflict and case management.

Our Key reports
Measuring Separation in Emergencies
The Impact of Protection Interventions on Unaccompained and Separated Children 

Richard Cobb Senior Humanitarian Evidence, Effectiveness and Accountability Advisor

Richard Cobb

Richard leads the Humanitarian Evidence, Effectiveness and Accountability Team and co-chairs the movement-wide, MEAL Humanitarian Technical Working Group and Core Humanitarian Standard task team.
Richard began humanitarian work in post-tsunami recovery work with Islamic Relief in 2005 after a background in agricultural development and focussed on supporting responses in Asia, Middle-East and Africa. He then spent 9 years with MERLIN driving their approach to monitoring, evaluation and accountability and led the organisation to become Humanitarian Accountability Partnership (HAP) certified.

Ali Forder

Director of Programme Policy and Quality

Ali leads SCUK’s Programme Policy and Quality (PPQ) department, which is comprised of around 70 technical specialists. PPQ provides technical advice to the design and delivery of high-quality, innovative and evidence-based programmes, and helps build evidence of effective approaches for children. Ali has been at Save the Children since 2015. Previously, she worked for DFID for fifteen years, based in London, Bangladesh, Ethiopia and Uganda.  She initially worked with DFID on health policy and programmes, and her final posting with DFID was as Deputy Head of DFID Uganda. 

Our Priorities
PPQ has teams specialising in the following areas: Child Protection, Child Rights Governance, Education, Health, Hunger and Livelihoods, and Impact Innovation and Evidence. It also includes the cross-cutting areas of Value for Money, Resilience and Gender.

Taitos Matafeni Head - Impact, Innovation and Evidence

Taitos Matafeni

Head of Impact, Innovation and Evidence

Taitos convenes SCUK efforts towards an Evidence and Learning strategic Vision. He offers strategic leadership of Monitoring, Evaluation, Accountability and Learning, Value for Money and Knowledge Management.
He has over 18 years of International Development experience in Sub-Sahara Africa, South Pacific & Asia. The focus has been on programme design, implementation and results measurement in child rights-based programming, livelihoods, public health and education interventions.
Over the past 14 years he has played a leading role in setting the strategic framework for monitoring, evaluation and learning strategies and approaches in organisations at both headquarters and in country offices. 

Our Priorities
Save the Children aspires to be a respected source and user of evidence. Our key priorities are to improve the quality of research and evaluations, support programmes to undertake robust Value for Money analysis and improve the findability of our evidence through effective knowledge management processes.

Bill Bell

Bill Bell

Head of Child protection & Child Rights Governance

Bill leads the organisation’s programme work on child protection, including issues such as violence against children, children on the move, modern slavery, children associated with armed forces and groups, and alternative care.   Bill also leads the organisation’s work on child rights governance, covering issues such as social accountability, child rights reporting, political economy analysis and children’s participation.

Our priorities
Child Protection aims to prevent and respond to the abuse, neglect, exploitation and violence experienced by millions of children. We focus on children without appropriate care, children on the move, conflict-affected children and the strengthening of child protection systems.

Our Key reports
Cash and Child Protection: how cash transfer programming can protect children from abuse, neglect, exploitation and violence

Protecting Children on the Move In Asia through Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and Social Media

Counting Pennies: A review of official development assistance to end violence against children


James Lawrie

James Lawrie

Head of Education

James leads on education programme design, evidence and learning, innovation, and quality assurance. He manages a team of nine education specialists. His previous work included a very wide range of roles, many based in crisis and post-crisis locations.

Our priorities
We focus on improving the quality of Primary Schooling and holistic Early Childhood Development (ECD) for the most deprived children. To improve the quality of primary education we focus on teacher professional development systems, alternative forms of primary education for children who are denied access to school. Throughout all our work we seek to ensure Girls are thriving. Our ECD portfolio concerns integrated services for children aged 0-3 and 4-6.

Our Key reports
A Save the Children report commissioned, and quality assured by our education specialists.

A Save the Children article for the UNICEF Think Piece series, co-authored by one of our education specialists.

An Accelerated Education Working Group (inter-agency) publication with high-degree of input from Save the Children education specialists.

Samy Ahmar

Samy Ahmar

Head of Health

Samy heads the Health team, which is made up of 13 technical advisors whose expertise covers the broad range of global health. He oversees a global portfolio of 35 programmes in 20 countries, making sure they are designed and implemented to a high standard of quality, that they adhere to our commitments on Equity, Gender & Sustainability and that they are on track to deliver on their objectives and achieve impact.

Our priorities

Our strategy for Health and Nutrition is designed to accelerate progress towards the Global Goals for child survival and put the world on a path to achieve Universal health Coverage by 2030. We work across the continuum of care to improve access to quality health services for the poorest communities. In particular, we work with Ministries of health and community leaders to adapt our Common Approaches for Maternal, New born and Child health: these are based on the latest evidence of what works to eliminate preventable deaths from labour complications, prematurity, infectious diseases and severe malnutrition.

Our Key reports
Save the Children. 2017. “Fighting for Breath: A call to action on childhood pneumonia”. 

Ahmar, S. et al. 2014. Mid-Term Evaluation of the “Strengthening South Africa’s Revitalised Response to HIV and Health” Programme. UK Government

Ahmar, S. et al. 2015. Baseline Evaluation of the Girls


Joanne Grace

Head of Hunger Reduction and Livelihoods

Jo leads a team of technical advisers who contribute to preventing malnutrition and breaking the intergenerational transfer of poverty. Our team works to support high quality design and implementation of nutrition and child poverty reduction programming in around 21 countries, as well as supporting sector wide innovations and evidence generation.

Jo has worked in development for more than 16 years, working across programme design, programme management, research, and monitoring, evaluation, accountability and learning. 

Our priorities
Our key workstream areas are:
- Maternal Infant and Young Child Nutrition
- Treatment of acute malnutrition
- Child sensitive food security and livelihoods
- Child sensitive social protection
- Adolescent skills for successful transitions.              

Our Key reports
Evaluation of our Early Warning/Early Action approach and pilots

Child sensitive indicators for poverty alleviation programming

How Families Cope with Poverty in Asia


Nina Gora

Nina Gora

Senior Gender Equality Advisor

Nina works across Save the Children to integrate gender equality within our programmes and organisation. She has a decade of experience working to advance gender equality and women’s rights through research, programme management and advisory roles in Afghanistan, Greece, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and Tajikistan.

Our priorities

The Gender Equality Team supports colleagues to design gender sensitive and gender transformative programmes through the development of guidance, capacity building, and provision of technical advice in-country and remotely.

Claudio Deola Senior Humanitarian WASH Advisor

Claudio Deola

Senior Humanitarian Water, Sanitation and hygiene (WASH) Advisor

Claudio is currently leading the Humanitarian WASH Team at Save the Children UK, and chairs the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene, Humanitarian Working Group for the Save the Children Association. Over the past 15 years he has been involved in large scale humanitarian operations and in complex emergencies, working for INGOs, UN agencies and the International Committee of the Red Cross. 

Our priorities

Water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) is a key sector to the delivery of quality public health humanitarian responses, and it contributes to the achievement of 3 Save the Children breakthroughs, as well as to the Pneumonia centenary commitment. Emergency sanitation for children, children engagement in WASH responses, Handwashing with soap, WASH in HCFS are the mains areas of interest.

Our Key reports

Emergency WASH for Children

Emergency Sanitation for IYCU5 - Study Report

Handwashing Problem Exploration report