Meet the Associates' Executive Committee Members

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Sara Lim Bertrand

Claire O'Kane

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Aïda Diop

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Susan Kreston

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Kirsten Pontalti

Sara Lim Bertrand

drives for results, especially for children and young people in humanitarian and development settings.  This has involved relentlessly searching for and testing promising practices during her 18 years of programming in child protection, gender-based violence, education in emergencies, and learning and development.  

Since 1996, Sara has worked in 18 countries and provided high-quality, remote support to field-based child protection coordination groups in more than 40+ countries.

 

Claire O'Kane

has over 25 years’ experience in international child rights work. She is passionate about children’s rights to participation, association, protection and care. Working as a practitioner, adviser, researcher and evaluator, she builds upon individual and collective strengths by supporting collaborative participatory processes with adults, children and young people to increase the realisation of children’s rights, social justice and peace. Claire has authored over 60 publications on these issues, including practical toolkits, training materials, strategic guidance, research and evaluation reports, and journal articles. Claire has a Masters in Applied Social Studies and a Diploma in Social Work.

 

Aïda Diop

has worked in child protection, focusing on the protection of children on the move, in Europe and Africa since 2003. Her technical knowledge stems from providing direct services to unaccompanied and separated asylum-seeking and refugee children. She has led national and regional research on child protection in the context of mixed migration throughout Africa for UN agencies and INGOs. Aïda has also designed and delivered training programmes for frontline professionals involved in counter-trafficking activities. Aïda is completing her doctoral research on community-based resolution mechanisms in the case of sexual violence against children in Zanzibar. She is a native French speaker, fluent in English and German, with conversational knowledge of Kiswahili and Wolof.

 

Susan Kreston

has 30 years’ experience in the criminal justice field, as both a prosecutor and academic, focusing on crimes against women and children. She also has 10 years’ experience as an independent consultant on legal and human rights issues. She is a two-time recipient of Fulbright Professorships in Psychology and Law, focusing on issues of human trafficking and violence against women and children in South Africa. She has published numerous peer-reviewed and accredited articles and provided training on violence against women and children to over 10,000 members of the allied criminal justice community throughout the world.

 

Kirsten Pontalti

is a researcher, policy advisor and mother with over 15 years of experience on issues related to children, youth and social change in conflict-affected, low-income contexts. Kirsten earned her doctorate from the University of Oxford for her dissertation on how childhood and children's transitions to adulthood have been changing in Rwanda and how children influence social change processes across generations, from colonialism to the present. She also has thematic expertise on governance and conflict, complex emergencies and development. Her recent clients include UNICEF, ECPAT International, UK DfID, Oxfam International, Girl Effect Rwanda, Grand Challenges Canada and the Rwanda Ministry of Justice.