Who runs AWN?


The Aid Workers Network (AWN) is a registered in the United Kingdom as a charity (number 1108253) and a non-for-profit company, limited by guarantee (number 04723251). You can see online AWN's entry in the Charity Commission's Central Register of UK Charities. You can also download reports concerning AWN's accounts.

AWN is governed by a Board of Trustees (see the list later in this entry), whose members, all unpaid volunteers, are legally responsible for the overall management of the Network, and for ensuring that it reflects the needs of Network members.


The Aid Workers Network is an all-volunteer-lead initiative. Several volunteers are responsible for specific tasks to maintain AWN (volunteer manager, newsletter editor/publisher, blog manager, forum moderators, etc.). Aid and development workers would like to volunteer to help with any aspect of AWN are always welcomed.

Let's Hear From You

The volunteers that support AWN welcome input on any aspect of AWN or its web site. Feel free to contact us with your comments or questions.

About the Board Members

Paul Starkey is an international consultant in rural transport, networking and animal power who has worked in many countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America and Europe. He has assisted the development of several national and international networks. He has been closely linked with Reading University as a visiting professor and research fellow. He is the author of a number of books including "Networking for Development" and "Perfected Yet Rejected".  You can contact Paul by sending an email to Paul (dot) Starkey (at) Aidworkers (dot) net.

Mark Butler is currently the Chair of Aid Workers Network. He has worked as a Project Manager, Logistics Coordinator and Security Manager in Central Asia and Africa (Great Lakes).  He completed a MSc in Development Practices at Oxford Brookes University in 2004 and is currently working for Tearfund as Country Representative for Mali and Senegal, based in the UK. He is interested in capacity development of local partners and community development programmes.  You can contact Mark by sending an email to Mark (dot) Butler (at) Aidworkers (dot) net.

Priyanthi Fernando is the Executive Director of the Centre for Poverty`Analysis, Colombo. Her interests are in infrastructure, social development (particularly gender and poverty issues), networking, communication and knowledge management. Having worked as a country director of an international NGO (Practical Action, UK), as the coordinator of a global network (IFRTD) and as an international consultant, Priyanthi has had the privilege of working with people from a range of countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America.  You can contact Priyanthi by sending an email to Priyanthi (dot) Fernando (at) Aidworkers (dot) net.

Graham Wood has worked in the humanitarian and development sector for over twenty years. Currently the Country Director for PACT in Sudan he has significant working experience in that country as well as Somalia, Kenya, Uganda, Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon, Cambodia and the UK, as well as short assignments in over twenty other countries. A very general generalist having worked in many sectors with a variety of NGOs and UN organisations, he now prefers taking leadership roles working with those with more defined skills. If he has a core skill it is around displacement and population returns.   You can contact Graham by sending an email to Graham (dot) Wood (at) Aidworkers (dot) net.

Natalie Grant Logan is a fundraising manager with many years experience developing fundraising programmes across Europe and Central Asia. In her previous life as a department manager in a supermarket, she soon realised that selling turkeys and televisions wasn't for her and moved to the non-profit sector to work with amazing organisations including Habitat for Humanity International and the Big Issue in Scotland's International team. Natalie is currently completing an MBA in International Organisations in Geneva, Switzerland. You can contact Nats by sending an email to Natalie (dot) Grant (at) AidWorkers (dot) net.

Nastaran Moossavi currently works as a self-employed Gender Planning and Evaluation Consultant in Iran. Her last job was with a green organization trying to empower pastoralist communities as stewards of arid semi arid environments. It is now more than a decade that she is involved in international humanitarian work in Iran, Afghanistan, and Cambodia. She has also served as a board member of some national social organizations aiming to promote contemporary literature and defend rights for free expression. In 1997, she co-founded a women’s documentation center that used to publish bibliographies on the Iranian women’s works and provide support to students, researchers, and journalists to write on women. You can contact Nastaran by sending an email to Nastaran (dot) Moossavi (at) AidWorkers (dot) net.

Joseph Chilengi is an International expert in forced internal displacement, human rights and is founder and Executive Director of Africa Internally Displaced Persons Voice (Africa IDP Voice) . With over 20 years in humanitarian and development sector with the United Nations System and other multi-lateral institutions, he has been instrumental in the elaboration and negotiating standard setting protocols among the eleven member states of the international conference on the Great Lakes Region as one of the Experts in the humanitarian and social issues cluster. He is also an independent expert of the African Union Commission on the draft Convention on the protection and assistance of IDPs in Africa and the African Union Special Summit on refugees, IDPs and forced displacement. Involved in different civil society organisations as a board representative, he has also presented many critical papers on forced internal displacement. He is currently a Visiting Research Fellow at the Refugee Studies Centre at the University of Oxford on internally displaced persons in Africa. You can contact Joseph by sending an email to Joseph (dot) Chilengi (at) AidWorkers (dot) net.

Smita Sircar is the treasurer and secretary for AWN. She works as Senior Manager at Volans, on understanding the needs of the social entrepreneurs and the opportunities for possible partnerships with Corporate sector. She is also researching the confluence of social entrepreneurship and venture capital/private equity. Smita has experience in both private and development sector. She has lived and worked in India, US, UK and Switzerland. In the private sector, she has worked for more than 6 years with ICICI Bank, in Corporate, SME, retail and private banking focussing on strategy, product management, project implementation, operations, trade finance and relationship management. As part of her transition to the development sector, she completed the University of Geneva’s specialised MBA programme in 2008. You can contact Smita by sending an email to Smita (dot) Sircar (at) AidWorkers (dot) net.

Alanna Shaikh is a consultant on health, development, and emergency relief. She holds an MPH from Boston University, and writes on global health for Change.org. She currently lives in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, where she works for a USAID-funded health project. She has lived and worked in Central Asia and the Middle East, in roles ranging from senior desk officer to technical expert on reproductive health. Her particular interests are behavior change communication, maternal and child health, and social sector reform. You can contact Alanna by sending an email to Alanna (dot) Shaikh (at) AidWorkers (dot) net.

Ryan Fitzgerald is a Project Manager at M|C Communications a leading provider of medical education event management solutions for health care professionals and others around the globe. He is a graduate of Wentworth Institute of Technology in Boston, MA and holds a BS in Computer Science. Currently he focuses on delivering business intelligence and data integration solutions with a team of off-shore developers.You can contact Ryan by sending an email to Ryan (dot) Fitzgerald (at) AidWorkers (dot) net.