Armenia (Nagorno Karabagh)
Vardan Tadevosyan is the director of ‘The Lady Cox Rehabilitation Centre’ in Stepanakert, Nagorno Karabagh. He lives in Stepanakert with his wife and two daughters aged 2 and 8.
“In January 1999, I came to work in the disused war-damaged building which Baroness Cox had founded as the future rehabilitation centre. I had previously been working in Yerevan where I was Head Educator and Lecturer in the International Post-Trauma Rehabilitation Centre. Seven years on the centre has treated over 1000 patients with a wide range of conditions. At the heart of my work is an emphasis on teamwork. I have trained my own staff in physiotherapy. Patients can also receive speech and psychological therapy and there are opportunities to do ceramic and art work, wood carving, information technology and music. These may be purely therapeutic but can also greatly improve the patients’ occupational prospects.”
Shan Women’s Action Network
The Shan Women’s Action Network (SWAN) is a network of Shan women active in Thailand and along the Thai-Burma border. Its mission is to work for gender equality and justice for Shan women in the struggle for social and political change in Burma through community-based actions, research and advocacy.
SWAN was set up on 28 March 1999 by a group of Shan women active in Thailand and along the Thai- Burma border seeking to address the needs of Shan women. In fact, before the formation of SWAN, Shan women in various locations had already been active in a number of projects to assist women. Even though informal networks were in place, it was felt that more could be achieved, in addressing both practical and strategic needs of Shan women, if a more concrete network among the various women could be formed.
This Shan women’s network would also be able to coordinate with other women’s organizations from Burma, as well as GOs and NGOs working with women locally, nationally and internationally.
Dr Rosaria Martins da Cruz
In East Timor HART has been supporting a primary health care clinic; Hiam Health. The clinic gives support to the patients and out-patients at Dili National Hospital. In particular it aims to help those in extreme poverty who have no means of support while they are in hospital and away from their villages.
Coordinated by Rosaria Martins da Cruz, HIAM-Health continues the work started by the Karidade-Health organisation, which had been inspired by the voluntary work of Rosaria at the hospital.
After Karidade-Health was forced to withdraw support, she continued to work alone as a volunteer with minimal support for six months until alternative sources of financial support for the service became available. The continuation and success of the program was achieved largely due to the tenacity of Rosaria and her willingness to work initially without wages, in the hope that a donor organization might be found.
In January 2004 the name of the organisation was changed to HIAM-Health (HIAM being an abbreviation of the East Timorese words Hamutuk Ita Ajuda Malu or “Together we help each other”). The organisation, which had previously been registered as an International NGO (INGO) was formally registered as a ‘Local NGO’ run by a Timorese.
Bishop Ben Kwashi
Bishop Ben Kwashi coordinates the medical programmes and the Christian Institute for further education and professional training in Jos, the capital of Plateau State. HART assists with these medical programmes as well as the Christian institute which provides for both Men and Women, professional training in vitally important subjects such as maternal and child health.
Born in September 1955, he studied at the Theological College of Northern Nigeria and was ordained in 1982. He has worked in rural and urban areas. In 1987 his church and home were totally burnt down in religious riots. In 1992 he was consecrated and enthroned as Bishop of Jos.
Under his leadership many Junior and Secondary Schools have been established as well as effective health care programmes, reaching out to many in need, including a very large number of HIV/AIDS patients – whatever their religion. Bishop Kwashi is married to Mrs. Gloria Ladi Kwashi; they have six children.
Bishop Elias Taban
Bishop Elias Taban co-ordinates the Orphanage, as well as the health and agricultural programmes supported by HART in Yei, Southern Sudan.
“My name is Bishop Elias Taban. I was born in the Southern Sudanese town of Yei in May 1955. Two hours after I was born over 50 men from the Yei police station were paraded, disarmed and gunned down by order of a Muslim northern Sudanese police officer. My mother escaped to the bush, where I was hidden for three days. At the age of 13 I was a child soldier in the first Sudanese liberation movement known as Anyanya.
Later I received a diploma in Civil Engineering as well as an advanced diploma in Theology. I speak five languages: English, Lingala, Arabic, Bari and Swahili. In 1990 I founded the Presbyterian Church in my province. In 2003 I was voted President of SEA, the Sudan Evangelical Alliance.
I am married with four adopted children who were orphans of the war. My wife supports me in Ministry, and holds a diploma in Theology. She leads the largest women’s church organisation in the area known as Christian Women Empowerment Program. My wife was previously a Captain in the Sudan People’s Liberation Army Movement, though now she dedicates her time to humanitarian causes with me.”
Christine works as the manager of the Orphan Rehabilitation Centre in Patongo, Northern Uganda.
Christine gained her degree in social work from Kampala University, Uganda. Christine and her family are native to Patongo and the north.
It was Christine who formulated the basic vision and plan, several years ago, for the Orphan Rehabilitation Centre.