Meet Our Mentors

Meet Our Mentors

Ceris Jones 

Ceris has been involved with the Alliance’s effectiveness and learning programme for more than five years, and has mentored several organisation in that time and experienced a variety of situations where mentoring has helped organisations to develop. Ceris has had ‘hands on’ experience in international development mainly in Nepal and India, and worked with a small Scottish and Nepali NGO both in Nepal and in the UK, initially on the ground level helping to co-ordinate community development projects, and years later in the UK as a fundraising and UK operations director. Her work in India involved running a youth exchange programme for a large NGO. Some of her other work has included working in France to set up partnership projects between a multinational company, French NGOs and public sector bodies. She has worked to support people with learning disabilities into employment. In summary her direct experience has had a particular emphasis on partnerships, volunteering & fundraising, and her mentoring experience has involved a significant amount of work on monitoring and evaluation. 

Ceris holds a MA in Anthropology from the University of Edinburgh.

“I am ready to do all I can in my role as a mentor to help organisations to develop and grow. I enjoy the role of supporting people to discover and experience things for the first time, and in particular being a neutral outsider who can spot things that are hard to see when you are working so hard to keep your organisation going from day to day.”

Kay Farmer 

Kay has been successfully supporting organisational and network effectiveness and sustainability for many years. She has practical experience of establishing and managing environmental management projects and programmes in Africa for international NGO’s and the United Nations. Kay supported the development and management of membership based networks in Africa and Europe, and has seen first-hand the value of shared learning. Having worked with donors on designing application and review systems, and project evaluation, Kay understands donor requirements. Her work focuses on supporting organisations to make a lasting difference through a range of bespoke services including capacity building; partnership development and stakeholder engagement; desk based research for evidence based decision-making; and monitoring, evaluation and learning. 

Kay holds a PhD from the University of Stirling, and a MSc from the University of Edinburgh.

“I am passionate about helping people to explore ways of increasing their organisational effectiveness. I look forward to working with the Alliance's members, enabling them to continue to do great work both now and into the future.” 

Koreen Reece

Koreen is an experienced mentor and technical advisor to civil society organisations, donor agencies, and government institutions. She brings a background of over ten years’ engagement with development and humanitarianism – mainly in Botswana, southern Africa – to the Alliance’s effectiveness and learning programme. Koreen’s work has ranged from human rights advocacy to HIV/AIDS responses, from community development to policy development, from youth exchange programmes to community-based care for orphaned and vulnerable children. She has developed media campaigns, managed income generation projects, and co-ordinated psychosocial support initiatives, with a variety of organisations ranging from small community projects to major national networks. She also established a unit for the co-ordination of NGOs at Botswana’s Department of Social Services, through which she worked with over two hundred agencies on assessments, training, capacity building, partnerships, and the scaling up of best practices. Koreen’s main areas of expertise are in governance; project planning and management; partnership development and co-ordination; communications and public relations; monitoring and evaluation; grant writing and reporting, among others. Her ongoing research at the University of Edinburgh into Botswana focuses on children, families, and the effects of NGO and government social work programmes in public health and community development.

Koreen holds a M.Sc. and a Ph.D. in Social Anthropology from the University of Edinburgh. Find more of Koreen's publications on her Academia.edu profile.

“As an anthropologist, I specialise in finding creative perspectives and offering new ways to see old problems. I am excited to put these skills to work for Scottish NGOs undertaking important development work around the world.”

Lindsay Graham

Lindsay has been working in international development for over 15 years. She is co-founder of a small charity, working to support women into higher education in Malawi. As Director of this charity, Lindsay has been involved with all aspects of organisational management, fundraising and grant applications, monitoring and evaluation, as well as project management. Lindsay was also the Project Director of an education programme for people with learning disabilities in the UK for over eight years.  She has worked in India and Malawi on educational projects for women and for those with learning disabilities. In all her work, she has taken on the development and management of different projects and has been involved in funding applications ranging from small trusts, corporate funding, Scottish Government, to the Big Lottery and DFID.  

Lindsay holds an MA in International Development and Education Management from Leeds University, and an undergraduate MA in Philosophy and Literature from University of Edinburgh.  Find out more about Lindsay's experience, qualifications and projects on her LinkedIn profile.

"I enjoy working with people and organisations in developing their ideas and seeing these flourish. So many organisations are doing important and interesting things, it is great to be involved in helping them to demonstrate, and increase, the impact of their work" 

Jane Petty 

Jane has 20 years of international development experience across the public, private, and NGO sectors. Jane is currently based in Edinburgh and works for LTS International a private sector project management consultancy company working in natural resource management and evaluations in East and Southern Africa and South East Asia.   Prior to this, for four years she was a Humanitarian and Livelihoods Adviser with DFID working on climate resilience and humanitarian response in West and Southern Africa. Most of Jane's experience though is working with faith based organisations and NGOs in Africa.  Jane has worked across eight countries in Africa over 15 years and was Fragile States Project Team Leader for Save the Children from 2011-2013, where she spent time supporting country programmes in various Director level roles for the Fragile States project; this also involved mentoring, coaching and training work with field managers. Jane also worked between 2005-2010 for Tearfund, in DRC, Burundi, Darfur and Indonesia and latterly, as Country Director in South Sudan and previously worked in  Agricultural Development in Malawi and Zambia between 1997 -2005 with the Church of Scotland. 

Jane holds an MBA in Third Sector management from the Open University and an MSc in African Studies (sustainable rural development) from Edinburgh University. Find out more about Jane's experience, qualifications and projects on her LinkedIn profile.

"I enjoy working with others to find solutions to both organisational and strategic problems as well as practical and logistical ones.  Practically, I can also use my experience to support small organisations to navigate the minefield of donor compliance to access the financing they need"

Helen Harvey

Helen has over ten years of experience working (and 20+ years volunteering) in the third sector in Scotland and internationally. Helen's expertise includes fundraising, business development, communications and evaluation and she has supported the development of charities and social enterprises in around 40 countries. Helen's experience in international development includes securing and project managing a six-figure multi-year grant from the United Nations Democracy Fund for a project involving seven partners in six countries in Africa; supporting a feasibility study and business case development of a Comic Relief funded project in Nigeria; and more. 

"I am passionate about supporting organisations to create positive sustainable social change. I particularly enjoy supporting small and medium charities and social enterprises to develop strategies and processes to become more effective, efficient and sustainable and look forward to supporting members of The Alliance."

Mandy Orr

Mandy is a Fundraising Consultant and has worked across the voluntary and arts sector in Scotland for over 20 years with organisations as diverse as the Princes Trust and the Citizens Theatre. She has considerable experiencing in securing six-figure grant income and forging new partnership projects.  Her expertise also includes developing Corporate Sponsorship packages and delivering Individual Giving campaigns.  Mandy has served on the boards of Scottish Environment LINK (the forum for Scotland’s environmental charities) and Frozen Charlotte (a children’s theatre company) advising on fundraising strategy.

Find out more about Mandy's experience, qualifications and projects on her LinkedIn profile

"Working as a Mentor alongside some of the most visionary and entrepreneurial organisations in Scotland’s International Development community is hugely rewarding.  I’m especially drawn to supporting organisations with their strategic planning and helping them to grow and develop their services."

David Given-Sjolander

With over 10 years experience in the development sector spanning local non-profit organisations to the United Nations, David has experience working in various roles across a wide range of diverse projects including gender equality, youth development, education and health. As a project manager for a large foundation David provides ongoing support and guidance to a portfolio of organisations on a daily basis in relation to project design and planning, budgeting, fundraising and long term sustainability and is able to draw from his time working in the private and social enterprise sectors to best support organisations take the next step in their growth and development. Currently based in Sweden, David has gained experience from his time working on projects in the UK, Senegal, Ethiopia, Zambia, Namibia and South Africa and currently supports projects in multiple countries around the world. 

“Supporting an organisation or individual to grow and develop is the most rewarding work I can think of. For me my role as a mentor is to give you the support and guidance you need so you can solve your own challenges and thus feel empowered and take ownership of the learning.” 

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