FORMER UNITED NATIONS VOLUNTEER
TEAM IN LESOTHO
The following are the
former UN Volunteers who served in Lesotho in the previous years
Hi my name is Momoh Aruna Jimmy, I am a Sierra Leonean with a
professional background in Environment and Development. I hold
an undergraduate Bachelor of Science with Honours degree in
Environmental Science, Environment and Development Option and a
postgraduate Masters Degree in Development Studies from the
University of Sierra Leone; both completed in 1998 and 2001
My work experience has revolved around teaching and programme
work with Non Governmental Organizations from the period after
my first graduation (1998) until I joined the UNV Programme in
2005 as a Programme Officer.
During my professional experience as a UNV Programme Officer, I
have co-ordinated National Volunteer Schemes, facilitated the
recruitment of essentials skills such as Medical Doctors to
provide essential health care services and also participated in
community volunteer initiatives….an experience that has
positively enriched my understanding of local and social
realities in the countries I have worked in.
To date, as a UNV Programme Officer in Lesotho, working towards
mainstreaming the values of volunteerism into UN programmes and
projects, I have increasingly realized that Volunteerism can
transform the pace and nature of development through local
Steve O’Dwyer I am a UN
Volunteer working on Sustainable Land Management (SLM) as part
of the UNDP’s Energy and Environment Unit. This work is intended
to improve land productivity, provide essential ecosystem
services and to increase the resilience of peoples’ livelihoods
to climate shocks. At the day-to-day level, I am working closely
with partners in the Ministry of Forestry and Land Reclamation
to distill national and international best practice into a
useable SLM model for Lesotho. I am a
graduate of the MA programme in International
Relations at Dublin City University. My earlier background is in
technology and engineering, having studied for a BE in
engineering and worked as a programmer for a financial
institution between 2002-2005.
My name is
Fiona Coyle and I am a UNV intern within the HIV/AIDS unit of
the UNDP with specific responsibility for the management and
supervision of the Community Leadership and Capacity Enhancement
(CLCE) Project. Originally, I hail from the North West coast of
Ireland where I trained as a Community Development worker with a
BA in Public and Social policy, and a MA in the area of
Community Development. My professional
experience, so far, has ranged from working with
on the ground projects, community organizations, government
bodies to international NGO’s in both the developed and
developing countries. I find the people of Lesotho to be very
welcoming and I receive great enjoyment from the rugged
landscape and the Basotho way of life.
Hi! This is Fulu Koali; the
Lesotho National man. I hold first degree in BSc. Agric.
Economics and I currently work as National United Nations Volunteer
I am assigned in the National Volunteer Corp
Project under the Ministry of Gender and Youth, Sports and
Recreation with UNDP as a key partner. I love the
work because it’s challenging and I learn much daily. Prior, I
was a research assistant of one Lecturer at the National
University of Lesotho (NUL). I am very passionate and proud of
my country Lesotho; being the country in which all people in it
lives with peace and harmony.
Hi my name is Giulia Pelosi and I am a UNV for
the Consolidation of Democracy and Good Governance Programme (CDGG).
I work with the Ministry of Justice, Human Rights and
Correctional Services in strengthening the promotion and
protection of human rights in Lesotho. I have completed a
Bachelor Degree in Law and an LL.M in Public International Law
and Human Rights. I have worked as a human rights researcher in
NGOs and volunteered in Italy for several years. Due to my
passion in this areaI am
enthusiastic to contribute to the improvement of a culture of
respect for human rights in Lesotho.
My name is
Samuel Akera. I am a UNV from Uganda.
I am working as a Disaster
Risk Reduction Advisor. My main function is to provide technical
support to UNDP, UNCT and the Disaster Management Authority. I
feel so privileged making a contribution to the project aimed at
'enhancing the national and local capacities in disaster risk
reduction in Lesotho’. I hold a M.A Development Studies, BSC.
Agriculture and several certificates in Disaster Management
obtained from World Bank Institute/Earthquake and Megacities
Initiatives. My professional experience varied widely to include
Disaster Risk Reduction, Humanitarian Assistance, Crisis
Prevention and Recovery as well as Agricultural Livelihoods.
Prior to my UNV assignment, I had worked for 8 years with
various UN and NGO agencies such as UNDP, WFP and World Vision.
To me, Lesotho is my second home!
My name is Manuela Tolmino and I am the HIV/TB
UNV Intern working with WHO in the Health Promotion Unit. After
receiving a BA in Economics and Business Management and a MA in
Social Communication in Italy, I moved to the U.S., to complete
a MA in Health Communication. My latest work experience includes
a position as a Research Assistant at George Mason University,
Fairfax U.S., working on HIV communication projects and an
internship in the HIV Unit of WHO’s Regional Office for the
Americas. I have lived in Lesotho since Feb 2010 and I
immediately find the Basotho people very warm and welcoming and
I am honored to be positively contributing to the achievement of
healthier communities in Lesotho.
Hi, I am Nerea Ntoi, a
National UNV Specialist under Lesotho College of Education -
Distant Teacher Education Programme (DTEP). My Highest
Qualification is Honours Bachelor of Education - with
Specialisation in Educational Management. I
Work closely with the LCE International UNV Specialist DTEP
Development Programme to ensure maximum delivery, supportive
working environment, exchange of skills and cooperative
approach. Based in Leribe Region as supporting structure to both
full-time and part-time site tutors.
Hi, I’m Helena Ekinge and I am
volunteering as a Communications Specialist for the UN in
Lesotho. In my job, I get to see and work with all the different
parts of the UN at country level and find ways of raising
awareness of what we do. Before I started working for the UN, I
was a journalist in my home country Sweden covering national and
international politics and events. I have also worked for UNDP
in Viet Nam and the UNDP head quarter branch in Sweden. My
educational background is within journalism and human rights.
Volunteerism for me is learning new skills while at the same
time sharing the knowledge I have gained so far. This is
especially true in Lesotho and I am very happy to have this
is my name. I’m a Malawian. In Lesotho I’m doing volunteering
work as Logistics Officer for World Food Programme (WFP). I
studied Computer Systems and Design .Before becoming a UNV in
January 2010; I was working for WFP Malawi as a national staff
for 8 years. Prior to WFP, I was working for DANIDA Livestock
Project. I’m always touched to see people starving due to food
insecurity. Transport, warehousing and commodity tracking
management is my area of work. I’m sure that the knowledge and
experience that I have, will greatly contribute to my work and
enable me to achieve my objectives and that of UNV, WFP and UN.
Melissa Jakola is the M&E
Specialist UNV for the Lesotho Renewable Energy-Based Rural
Electrification (LREBRE) project- implemented by the Ministry of
Natural Resources, through the Department of Energy, in
with Global Environment Facility and UNDP.
Melissa hails from Sudbury, Canada and has a degree in
Environmental Earth Science. She has worked in the environmental
field for 5 years and volunteered in South Africa, Honduras,
Costa Rica, Taiwan and a First Nations community in Canada.
Melissa is excited to be part of the LREBRE project; she enjoys
living in Lesotho and is driven forward through the hope of the
project to support the government in its efforts to increase the
electrification of the Basotho people.
Hi I'm Sara McGinty,
volunteering in Lesotho from Canada, through the UNDP, at the
Lesotho College of Education. It is within this position, that
I am able to work with my Basotho colleagues in strengthening
the Distance Teacher Education Programme in a progressive and
innovative manner. I have worked in the education sector
having spent over nine years engaged in classroom teaching, in
Africa and in Canada, have consulted on educational projects,
and have worked on various development initiatives. My
educational background includes a B.A. (honours), B.Ed., and a
M.A. in Curriculum, Teaching, and Learning, specialising in
Comparative, International, and Development Education.
Hi, I’m Orfhlaith Ramsey,
volunteering in Lesotho
from Ireland. So far, my work career has spanned civil society,
government, education, private enterprise and self-employment. I
am interested in languages, people and building social networks
to get things done. This has led to a Diploma in French, a BA in
History and Linguistics and a Masters in Business
Administration. Volunteerism is, I feel, the ultimate
bridge-builder for personal and societal growth and development,
especially when we get community, government, education and
business all volunteering together. I believe this is possible
in Lesotho, where people greet me with the words ‘Welcome home’.
Daniel Stoltz (until 31.12.2008)
Hi, my name is Daniel Stoltz, UNV Civil Society
Specialist stationed in Maseru, Lesotho. My prior work
experience, education and training covers the areas of
journalism, civil society, project management, culture and
promotion. I have a vocational diploma in project management,
inclusive of studies in international cooperation and
organizational theory. My interest in social relations and
structures has led to studies in Sociology at the Lund
University, Sweden. Volunteering to me is the opportunity to
take part in a new society and to broaden one’s perspective. It
contributes to a deepened understanding of societal dynamics and
the roles we all play in it.
Teresa Wyndham-Smith (until 31.12.2008)
Teresa Wyndham-Smith is from New Zealand. She's based in the
Ministry of Justice, Human Rights and the Correctional Service
working on the establishment of the Lesotho Human Rights
Commission. She also worked in the Ministry of Local Government
and Chieftainship for 16 months assisting with the development
of communication processes and materials. Prior to coming to
Lesotho she was the Communications Manager for a refugee
resettlement NGO in New Zealand.
"Working in the two Ministries has given me a unique insight
into both life as a southern African public servant and the
practical workings of development projects. Lesotho is a
fascinating country and a great base from which to learn more
about sub-Saharan Africa".
(03.12.2006 – 30.06.2008)
Jones is a graduate in History and Politics from the
University of Wales, Swansea. Dyfan has been active in Lesotho
for many years, first through his association with the NGO,
Lesotho Wales Link and most recently, through UNDP Lesotho, in
his role as advisor to the Lesotho parliamentary committees. He
is based in the Senate and operates between both houses of
parliament. Dyfan says, ‘The Lesotho Parliament has recently
gone through major changes and it has been a great honour and
privilege to have been part of that development. I have really
enjoyed my time living here and feel that Lesotho is my home
Gwynneth Wong (24.04.2005 – 31.12.2007)
My name is Gwynneth Wong. I am from Canada. I have been
at UNDP Lesotho since August 2004, originally as a CIDA intern
in HIV, and then as a UNV Volunteer HIV & AIDS Specialist since
April 2005. I coordinate the joint UN project “Greater
Involvement and Empowerment of People Living with HIV & AIDS (GIEPA)
in Lesotho” involving UNDP, UNAIDS, FAO and WFP working with the
Lesotho Network of People Living with HIV & AIDS (LENEPWHA).
"Working and living
in Lesotho has offered a great opportunity to participate in the
community, and explore life in the mountain Kingdom. I have been
welcomed into a family providing a unique experience of living
in Lesotho. While I have been stationed in Maseru, the
mountains, dams, skiing (!) are only a few hours drive away".
James Wah-Bloh Bedell (15.08.2002 – 31.12.2007)
James Wah-Bloh Bedell, a Liberian national. I’ve been in
the country since mid 2002. I have a degree in Sociology.
As of July 2007, I have been re-deployed to the field to
coordinate and lead WFP’s drought response food aid to 180,000
vulnerable people in the southern districts.
" Working in the
Ministry of Local Government and Chieftainship has given me a
unique insight into both life as a southern African public
servant and the practical workings of development projects.
Lesotho is a fascinating country and a great base from which to
learn more about sub-Saharan Africa".
Liana Edith Sabbath (06.09.2002 -
name is Liana Edith Sabbath, am
originally from Kenya, I came to Lesotho in 2002 and it is my
first assignment as a UNV, attached to WFP under Emergency
operation as a programme officer. I set up the office in
Mafeteng district which is the biggest district in Lesotho,
Benefiting more than 110,000 beneficiaries. This was my biggest
challenge, as I had to travel to very remote and mountainous
areas to register the vulnerable people. This was a very
humbling and educative experience.
I am currently based in Maseru as a Funds Manager in the
Logistics Unit; the work is also very challenging and
interesting at the same time, I ensure that WFP Lesotho has
enough funds to cover its proposed ITSH operations. Process all
ITSH related invoices for payment, prepare budgets, compile the
required reports and other related duties.
Hassan S. Abdi ( 23.10.2002 – 31.12.2007)
name is Hassan S. Abdi. I am a
national of Somalia. I obtained my first University degree in
Ag/Economics before proceeding to USA obtaining a Masters in
Resource Development from Michigan State University, USA and
postgraduate diploma in Programme Investment, Appraisal &
Management from Harvard University.
I arrived in March 1999 to join UNDP as Aid Coordination
Specialist attached to Development Planning assisting in
managing and administering external aid up to June 2001. In
October 2002, I became head of Sub Office of World Food
Programme coordinating emergency operation at district level.
Currently, I am head of the WFP Food for Work Unit coordinating
the provision of food incentive to enable vulnerable community
groups to take part in labour based infrastructure development
improving livelihoods and creating assets in the communities.
Victoria Diarra (17.11.2002 – 31.12.2007)
am called Victoria Diarra, social statistician. This is
my first UNV assignment, which started in November 2002. I
provide technical support to the Ministry of Finance and
Development Planning in establishing a sustainable and viable
National Monitoring and Evaluation System and enhancing the
skills of the staff of the Bureau of Statistics to effectively
and efficiently coordinate the Nation statistical system.
arrangements for UNV Volunteers are in adherence with the
stipulated rules. Housing facilities are provided but there is
no support for regular maintenance".
JOSE PEDROSA - UNDP (14.02.2006 – 31.07.2007)
name is Jose Pedrosa and I’m from
Spain. I have been living in Europe and the US working with
development issues. As part of my previous jobs, I have had the
opportunity to go on several missions to West Africa. These
trips made me aware of the reality in the field. The UNV
Programme offered me the opportunity to put my experience at the
service of UNDP in Lesotho, where I’m presently working. Now I
support the implementation of projects aiming at environmental
sustainability. I think the UNV program is really a remarkable
experience, and I recommend it to anyone who wants to contribute
Adam Weimer - wfp (15.10.2004 –
name is Adam Weimer. Originally, I am
from the U.S. but I have been in Lesotho for almost three years
now, first as a Peace Corps Volunteer then as a UNV since
October. In my capacity as a UN Volunteer, I am serving with the
World Food Programme as the HIV/AIDS coordinator here in
Lesotho. I am responsible for mainstreaming HIV/AIDS activities
into all WFP Lesotho Programmes as well as forging new
partnerships with the Government and NGOs to provide food to
those affected and infected with HIV. Currently there are over
40,000 people receiving food assistance through our HIV/AIDS and
TB programme. My experience so far has been very rewarding. At
the end of the day I know that my work is making a difference in
mitigating the impact of HIV/AIDS.
Ursula Messner - psi (29.04.2005
name is Ursula Messner and I come
from Germany. I am a marketing specialist and this is my first
UNV assignment. I have already worked in Cuba, El Salvador and
Mexico but this is my first time working in Africa.
I arrived in April 2005 to work as an UNV at the Social
Marketing NGO Population Services International (PSI) in Maseru.
I am the technical advice for social marketing activities
according to HIV/Aids at PSI. I am also responsible for the
VTC-centres and build a network with Faith Based Organizations.