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.

Sierra Leone – Ibrahim Turay

Ibrahim Turay is our Country Director for Sierra Leone since 2021, and he lives and is based in Freetown. He has worked in the development field for over 20 years, with experience in human rights, education and health. Ibrahim holds a Masters Degree in Sustainable Development, and professional credential in Project Management (Certified Development Project Manager CDPM III – Master Level). Ibrahim has been working with Health Poverty Action in Sierra Leone since its inception in 2005 and has held various positions in Senior Management, Project Management and Programme Management. Prior to joining Health Poverty Action, he worked for several organisations including Bajito Onda Foundation (USA-based) and the Council of Churches of Sierra Leone. He has years of experience working with marginalised people in remote communities, changing their health status and ensuring their well-being.

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.

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 – Mohamoud Bullale

Mohamoud Bullale, HPA Somaliland Acting Country Director Bullale holds a double degree in Public health and Development studies and Masters in Public health with over 12 years’ experience in health, nutrition, GBV, WASH and CASH transfer programming in Africa, largely Somalia/Somaliland. Bullale has worked for HPA for the past 10 years managing and overseeing various development and humanitarian interventions funded by FCDO, USAID, EC, UNICEF, WFP, WHO,GIZ and Caritas, among others.

Rwanda – Maurice Nizeyimana

Maurice Nizeyimana has worked with Health Poverty Action for nine years. Before joining us, he worked at the Pan African office of Pax Romana in Nairobi as the Pan African Coordinator from 2007 to 2012. In 2012, he joined Health Poverty Action in Rwanda as the Project Manager for the EU funded SALTWASH project. In addition to SALTWASH, he also managed the Youth Livelihood project (Huguka Dukore) in 2013, funded by USAID through the Education Development Centre. From 2013 he also managed the Rwandan Girls Education and Advancement Programme (REAP) funded by DfID through the Girls Education Challenge window.

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.

South East Asia (Regional Managers)

For the management of our South East Asia offices, the regional team shares the responsibilities of project management and development. This decision was made due to the high level of interaction and fluidity needed to tackle health issues faced within these countries. For many projects, cross-border management has been vital. By strengthening the relationship across teams in different countries, we are increasing our ability to eradicate malaria. This is due to a better understanding of the spread of malaria, as well as sharing of resources and knowledge. Our Head of Programmes for Asia Bangyuan Wang has oversight over the projects happening in the region. Alongside Bangyuan, other key members of staff include Technical Manager Dr. Thet Lynn,  Finance Manager Lan Tran and Programme Officer Josien van der Kooij.