Country Directors

Guatemala – Thomas Hart

Thomas took up his current post in April 2005. He is from Northern Ireland and has lived and worked in Guatemala since 1993, working on a number of Health Poverty Action projects as well as undertaking consultancy work for Mayan NGOs. He has a BSc degree in social psychology from the London School of Economics and spent several years as a political researcher for BBC news and current affairs in London.

Nicaragua – Juan Herrera

Juan Herrera started with HPA in 2004 as a Field Technician, then as Project Manager in Siuna, then as Program Manager in Puerto Cabezas and is currently Country Representative in Nicaragua. He studied a Bachelor in Business Administration with a mention in Banking and Finance, has a degree in Clinical Psychology and a Master in International Cooperation and Humanitarian Aid. He has collaborated in Mid Term Evaluations in Guatemala and Rwanda. He has worked in programs on SHR, SGBV, Maternal and Newborn Health, Water and Sanitation, economic empowerment and entertainment education for social change and cooperation.

Sierra Leone – Prince Cummings

Prince Cummings is our Country Director for Sierra Leone and is based in Freetown. He has worked in the development sector for over 25 years and holds a PhD in Philosophy from the UK and a Master of Science in Administration (MSA) in International Development from the USA. Before now, Prince worked as the Executive Director for Flopac Development and Education Consultancy, as National Director of SOS Children’s Villages Sierra Leone, and as the Communication for Development Specialist for UNICEF Sierra Leone. He also worked as the Director of Studies/Lecturer for Crown International College London. He has years of experience in working to ensure health and well-being for all, especially vulnerable children and women.

Namibia – Pieter Steenkamp

Pieter Steenkamp is Programmes Manager in Namibia. He has been working with HPA for over 17 years. Pieter joined HPA (HU) in 2001 as an Administrative Assistant and worked closely with Country Directors and project staff over 15 years and gained extensive knowledge in public health, project cycle management, programmes development, human resources and finance management. Pieter had 11 years working experience managing big staff compliments prior to joining HPA and holds a three-year management diploma from the Cape University of Technology.

Rwanda – Dario Devale

Dario is our Rwanda Country Director, with studies in Cultural Anthropology and Peacekeeping and humanitarian interventions; he joined HPA in Rwanda in May 2018 working on a Country program focusing on Education, drop out of school girls, youth and employment and gender-based violence. In the past, he conducted researches in Kenya and Burkina Faso, worked as project coordinator in Ethiopia and Malawi and as Country Director in Mali and Myanmar, where he lived for 7 years working on programs on child protection, maternal and child health, IDPs camps in conflict’s areas and HIV prevention, care and treatment programs with most at-risk populations.

Kenya – Ibrahim Ali

Ibrahim Ali is the Country Programme Manager for Kenya and a public health specialist with over 13 years of experience in community health work. Ibrahim has been working in health systems programming with Health Poverty Action since 2012. He has a management and public health background and brings extensive experience in humanitarian community health contexts as a community health programmer. Ibrahim is a passionate advocate for social change in communities who are marginalised and discriminated against, including the health workers who serve them.

Ethiopia – Mirchaye Mekoro

Mirchaye Mekoro joined Health Poverty Action in November 2019 as Country Programme Manager for Ethiopia. He has more than eight years’ experience in programme design, implementation and monitoring and evaluation in both governmental and civil society organizations. He has managed diverse programmes in health, education, food security, livelihoods, disability, peacebuilding and conflict resolution. He has worked on these diverse development programmes throughout the Horn of Africa region covering Ethiopia, Somalia, Sudan and South Sudan. Mirchaye holds a master’s degree in International Cooperation and Humanitarian Aid from Kalu institute in Spain, and a Bachelors degree in Health Education and Behavioral Science from Jimma University in Ethiopia.

Somaliland – Rohit Odari

Rohit Odari joined Health Poverty Action as the Country Director for Somaliland in August 2019. Rohit has worked with us twice previously in his career as far back as 2008 before being offered his most recent Country Director position. Before joining this mission in Somaliland, he was working with Americares Foundation in Nepal as the Country Director responsible for the Nepal Earthquake Recovery program in 2016. Previously, he worked with the UK’s Department for International Development in Nepal. While there, he worked on a 10-year program in west Nepal supporting health and basic service activities in conflict-affected communities. He started his international development career in 1993 working with SNV Nepal.

East Asia (Regional Manager) – Zhang Jun

Zhang Jun has worked on Health Poverty Action’s projects in Kachin State in Burma since 1994 and was responsible for initiating our project in Wa State in 2001. He has coordinated projects in the border area including Burma and Yunnan in China for the past two years.  He became the first programme manager for the area in March 2002. A medical doctor with extensive experience in immunisation programmes in China, Zhang Jun worked for the Ministry of Health prior to joining Health Poverty Action.

Laos – Michael Pitt

Michael is an experienced practitioner and inspirational leader with over thirty years of progressively responsible experience in the humanitarian and development field. He is an “inclusion” professional and has spent the greater part of his professional career working together with and on behalf of persons who are excluded and marginalised from mainstream society. He adopts a rights-based approach focusing on the need for accountability, voice, empowerment and non-discrimination, promoting inclusiveness, equity and equality. During the past 11 years, Michael has worked in Ghana, Uganda, Cambodia and Laos in the disability, health, education and human rights fields. In these countries, Michael has worked at both the grassroots level and the regional and national strategic levels. Michael was previously the Country Programme Coordinator for HPA Lao PDR and has now rejoined the team as Country Director.

Cambodia and Vietnam – Andrew Martin

Andrew Martin is our Country Director for Cambodia and Vietnam. Andrew first joined HPA in 2008 to be the Country Director for HPA Cambodia, prior to which he worked on emergency health care projects in post-conflict West Africa. Andrew has worked for HPA in Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam and Myanmar, he rejoined HPA in 2018 in a South East Asia regional position and commenced the Country Director position for Cambodia and Vietnam in early 2019. Over the years Andrew has gained considerable experience of designing/managing projects related to supporting/strengthening primary, secondary and community-level health services, maternal and child health, TB, malaria, HIV, gender-based violence, WASH, disaster risk reduction, emergency preparedness and response. Andrew has worked a lot with indigenous communities in Cambodia, including supporting the establishment of local NGOs staffed by Indigenous peoples focusing on health and advocacy.