Five new committee members appointed to advise on grant-making
1 June 2020
The Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust (JRCT) has appointed five new committee members whose expertise will help guide grant-making.
Three new 'cooptees' have been appointed to the Rights and Justice committee, which supports those who uphold equality and human rights in support of racial and religious minorities.
Fidelis Chebe (pictured top row, left) currently works as an operations and development manager at Refugee Education Training Advice Service, based in Leeds, and as the founder director of Migrant Action, an advocacy and migrant rights organisation. As an immigrant to the UK, Fidelis has first-hand experience of the systems and policies that create or exacerbate a denial of rights and humanity for migrants and refugees.
Muna Abdi (top row, centre) trained as an educational psychologist and focuses on work with young people and mental health. She has worked particularly with young men at risk and those in or on the fringes of gangs. She has a PhD in Education and provides consultancy, working in schools, as well as providing teacher education through a race equity lens. Muna has developed a parents’ advocacy service within Sheffield as well as an intergenerational project which provides a space for women of colour to talk about mental health and wellbeing.
Sherrie Smith (top row, right) completed a degree in community development and youth work at Goldsmiths University and has volunteered and worked in several Gypsy Traveller organisations over the last 15 years, including sitting on a range of government advisory bodies. Sherrie, who was was raised in a traditional Romany Gypsy family, has pioneered work on tackling hate crime towards Gypsies and Travellers.
She works as a freelance consultant, working particularly with young people.
Lisa Vanhala, a professor of political science at University College London (pictured bottom row, left), has joined the Sustainable Future committee Her research and teaching focuses on global environmental politics and human rights, exploring the role of law and norms in political processes and social change. She has published a prize-winning book on the disability rights movement and a number of articles on social movements, environmental politics, human rights and climate change governance.
Alex Runswick, former director of Unlock Democracy (pictured bottom row, centre), has joined the Power and Accountability committee. Alex, who has over 15 years’ experience in the democracy field, including on the board of the Electoral Reform Society, recently set up the Brexit Civil Society Alliance.
The Trust has five committees, which oversee each programme area.