Helen set up refugeeEd after spending time in Greece teaching, developing and setting up education programmes. While there she realised how important education is in a crisis, providing structure, hope, opportunity and community.
Helen was amazed at the compassion in the grassroots education providers, and saw the need for more collaboration between providers and with experienced teachers, so we can all strengthen the education on offer.
She also works for the civil service, and she enjoys making music, writing and hiking.
Founder and Chair
Colette is a qualified TEFL teacher who has been working as a teacher for two and a half years. The majority of that time she has spent in Greece working in the refugee context. She started her time in Greece working for the community centre We Are Here in Nea Kavala refugee camp in the North of Greece, and worked her way up from teacher, to education coordinator and finally to field coordinator.
Now she lives and works in Thessaloniki, but often travels around to visit projects across the country in her campervan Evie.
Field Coordinator, Greece
Robin joined RefugeeEd as a trustee in May 2020 focusing on all aspects of Governance.
He has worked previously as a teacher and Her Majesty's Inspector of Schools. In his inspection work he specialised in looking at the practice of leadership, management and governance. As a practical advocate of lifelong learning, he subsequently re-trained as a lawyer and provided advice to education institutions on student related matters. After working for the Education Department in London as a 14-19 Adviser, he took on the freelance role of 'critical friend' working with schools and colleges on quality improvement.
Since leaving full-time work, Robin has taken on voluntary roles as a nursery school governor, and for Refugee Action as a member of their Increasing Asylum Justice team.
Lisa worked as a teacher and then Headteacher in the UK, and has worked as a community worker and on many creative projects for schools as an Excellence in Cities coordinator, Tower Hamlets. Over the years she has volunteered with lots of organisations, including Northern Women's Group supporting Palestinian women, as well as in Calais.
Lisa's parents came to the UK as migrants after the Second World War, missing out on much of their education, and so raising their children to appreciate the educational opportunities avalilable in the UK
Lisa believes that education is the most powerful way for everyone to have greater opportunities and experiences. Refugees and asylum seekers both deserve and have a right to a good education.
Jess currently works for the children’s charity Coram with a focus on Corporate Partnerships - developing strategic partnerships with businesses and networks to support the charity’s aims.
Everyday Jess sees the incredible impact education can have on the development of young people and she has been particularly inspired by the work of Coram’s Young Citizens Programme, which supports refugee and migrant young people in the UK.
Becoming a Trustee at RefugeeEd has been an important opportunity to help support access to education for refugees in Greece and raise awareness of this fantastic charity. You’ll meet Jess at a range of fundraising events, from quizzes and talks to community festivals in South London.
Roisin joined RefugeeEd as a trustee in September 2019 and is focusing on supporting us with volunteer on-boarding and recruitment.
Outside of RefugeeEd, Roisin has worked at Challenge Partners, a UK based education charity since March 2016, where she is responsible for the delivery and development of a number of programmes. She also manages the pipeline of new innovations and pilot evaluations, making recommendations for which programmes should be developed further or not.
Roisin has also worked in education in Spain, Mexico, Egypt and in international schools in the UK. She holds a MSc in Globalisation and Development from UCL where she focused her research on the impact of the 2012 education reform policy on indigenous schools in Oaxaca, Mexico.
Education Networks Trustee
A lifelong and eclectic volunteer coming from a family of teachers, Kim has always been committed to education and learning and helping others to realise their potential.
Originally leading on commissioning health professional education for the NHS in Wales, Kim changed profession in 2000 to focus on broader people and equality matters. In seeking out a Trustee opportunity with a human rights focus, as she approaches retirement, she applied to refugeeEd.
She believes her professional skill-set is a good match for assisting the charity to target educational specialist volunteers who are the life-blood in enabling its mission to be fulfilled and enabling Article 26 of UDHR to be upheld in the Greek refugee context.
Human Resources Trustee
During his time volunteering in Greece, it became obvious to Ed how essential specialised long-term volunteers are for grassroots organisations. Ed saw the importance of trained, experienced teachers.
When he was volunteering, he had some teaching experience, but this did not prepare him for the complex challenges: mixed ages, very mixed abilities and language skills, and the difficult behaviours of children who have experienced instability, trauma, and long periods of time out of education.
Serving as a trustee at refugeeEd allows Ed to do what he can to help promote educational opportunities for those who are trying to build a new life.
Alice has always been passionate about working on projects that ensure equal access to education for all.
She initially trained as a secondary school teacher in modern foreign languages, and now works on the coordination and communication of advocacy projects linked to global education, migration and health.
Over the years Alice has been involved with a number of refugee education projects, including most recently in northern Greece. Alice joined refugeeEd as a trustee in 2019 and helps primarily with the communication of the charity's work.