The Women In Aid & Development Leadership Team
Alison Darcy - Canberra Group Co-Convenor
Alison works within CARE Australia’s International Programs Department as the Australian NGO Cooperation Program Coordinator where she provides oversight for a portfolio of projects across Asia, the Pacific and Africa. Prior to joining CARE she worked for CUFA, an international development agency focusing on economic development projects across the Asia Pacific. She was previously an Australian Youth Ambassador for Development in Bangladesh working for the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Alison has a Bachelors in Business and a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies.
Dientje van Dongen - Canberra Group Co-Convenor
Dientje is currently working in CARE Australia’s emergency response unit where she provides overall program support to CARE’s humanitarian programs in the Asia-Pacific and Middle-East. Prior to CARE, Dientje worked for the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs where she co-managed partnerships with several NGOs in the area of lobby and advocacy, women’s inclusive political participation and transitional justice in fragile and (post-)conflict states. She has completed a master degree in International Human Rights Law and a B.A. in International relations and is a proud feminist and equal rights activist.
Rebecca Macfarling - Melbourne Group Convenor
Rebecca MacFarling is currently the CEO of the Museum of Australian Democracy at Eureka (MADE) on the site of the Eureka Stockade in Ballarat. She also serves on ACFID's Code of Conduct Committee as a fundraising and marketing specialist. Now based in Melbourne, Rebecca has spent the last two decades working in marketing, fundraising, sponsorship, digital strategy and customer loyalty across media, financial services, the arts and international development. Prior to her appointment at MADE, Rebecca was the Deputy CEO of international NGO, CUFA.
Kelly Rae - Melbourne Group Co-Convenor
Kelly is on the senior leadership team of TEAR Australia and has regional oversight of TEAR's development and relief programming in South Asia. This spans work in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, India and Sri Lanka. She also co-founded the Melbourne Development Circle, and previously worked in Cambodia through the Australian Youth Ambassadors Program.
Mia Bromley - Melbourne Co-Convenor
Mia is a senior consultant for an Australasian health and social sector consultancy. Mia’s particular areas of expertise include population health planning, workforce planning, data analysis and evaluation. Mia is also a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and sits on two not for profit boards in the health and disability space. Mia has a Masters of Public Health, a Graduate Diploma in Public Health, and an undergraduate qualification in Criminology and Youth Justice. Mia has a strong focus on social and health equity, and has experience working with Aboriginal and other culturally and linguistically diverse communities.
Mia has a particular interest in the impact of changing funding models in Australia – the rollout of consumer directed funding models in disability and aged care, the impact of primary care commissioning, and the opportunities arising in the areas of social impact investment and social enterprise
Sabene Gomes - Melbourne Co-Convenor
Sabene is a development practitioner, activist, writer, blogger and intersectional feminist. She currently works for CBM Australia and manages its India portfolio of Community Based Inclusive Development programs. Sabene’s expertise specialises in the intersection of gender and disability with a specific focus on the South Asia and the Pacific. She is passionate about equality and social justice and serves as the Co-Director of Catalyst Co-Lab, an advocacy and rights based group which aims to raise awareness and empower active citizens and agents of change.
Holly Asquith - Sydney Co-Convenor
Holly is currently working as an Intern Advisor at CareerSeekers New Australian Internship Program, a non-profit social enterprise that works with leading organisations to create employment opportunities for asylum seekers and refugees. She is currently studying her Masters in Law and International Development at the University of Sydney, and has recently undertaken fieldwork on Human Rights in Nepal. She is particularly interested in refugee law, gender rights in development, and the increasing role of Corporate Social Responsibility in achieving international development.
Chris Franks - Women in Aid & Development Principal
She is Chair of Habitat for Humanity Australia, a not for profit working to deliver shelter led community development programs in Australia and the Asia Pacific, Chris is also Chair RESULTS International Australia, a Director of NSW Kids & Families, director of Family Planning NSW along with several other Committee's including the CUFA International Development Working Group.
Previously Chair of the Australian Council for International Development (ACFID), Code of Conduct Committee and the recipient of the inaugural ACFID Award for Outstanding Service to the Aid and Development Sector. Chris has also served on boards of Oxfam, Save the Children NSW, as Chair of the NSW Charities Ministerial Advisory Committee and advised many not for profits.
Michelle Imison - Sydney Group Co-Convenor
Michelle is the Global Health Campaign Manager at RESULTS International (Australia), where she works largely to bring together Australia researchers, politicians and policy-makers for better outcomes in relation to tuberculosis. She has previously been an international development consultant and academic in public health, as well as having served on a Board (Oxfam Australia) and as a grant-maker for a women's education organisation (Graduate Women International). Michelle's major interests in international development include public health, gender and the political landscape in which the sector operates (i.e. everything development-related).
Jackie Lauff - Sydney Group Co-Convenor
Jackie Lauff is a sport and development practitioner who has worked in local, national and international sport organisations. She has a degree in Occupational Therapy, a Master of International and Community Development from Deakin University and a Master of Adapted Physical Activity from the Norwegian School of Sport Sciences. Early in her career Jackie was an Australian Youth Ambassador for Development in Fiji working on the South Pacific Games. Jackie is a member of the Executive Committee of the Australian Disability and Development Consortium, a reviewer for the International Journal of Sport and Development, and co-chair of the ACFID Small Member Working Group. Jackie is a co-founder and currently CEO of Sport Matters, an international NGO based in Sydney.
Jessie Rudd - Sydney Group Co-Convenor
Jessie is the Communications & Development Manager at SurfAid, a humanitarian & community development organisation working to improve access to clean water & sanitation, basic healthcare, and nutrition in remote island communities. Jessie has degrees in Environmental Studies & Anthropology, and is fascinated by the interaction between people and the places they live - this fascination has taken Jessie to over 20 countries for work, study, and play.
Overseeing SurfAid's communications and development means Jessie spends her time telling powerful stories, and building strong relationships. Never intentionally delving into fundraising, Jessie energetically embraces this work as incredibly challenging and immensely rewarding.