Spokespeople

If you are a journalist, our media team can put you in touch with specialist spokespeople who can provide you with expert information and opinion on a range of aid, development and justice issues, including emergency response, maternal and child health, human trafficking and slavery. To arrange an interview, please contact our Media Centre.

Ali_Schafer

Ali Schafer
Senior Program Advisor-Mental Health and Psychosocial Support

Alison leads World Vision International’s work in mental health and psychosocial support for those recovering from natural disaster or conflict. This includes supporting various projects in West Bank and Gaza, Jordan, Northern Sri Lanka, Uganda and Kenya. Based in Melbourne, Australia, Alison also works on developing inter-agency partnerships and international mental health projects which will continue to see the research and development of international guidelines and procedures for supporting mental health and psychosocial support initiatives in emergencies and post-crisis recovery programs.  Alison is also responsible for supporting, mentoring and training others to build their capacity to design and manage projects in this area. 

Andrew Johnson

Andrew Johnson
Manager, Political Engagement and Australian Aid

Andrew has over a decade’s experience working on policy, advocacy and campaigning across Australian civil society in the social services, international development and religious sectors. With degrees in law, theology and science, Andrew has worked in a variety of policy and advocacy roles with the Uniting Church in Australia on a range of social policy issues. For the past three years Andrew has worked in Canberra as part of World Vision’s government relations team. He has extensive knowledge of the Australian parliamentary and political processes, the Australian aid program and a range of other international development public policy issues. 

Anthea Spinks

       Anthea Spinks            
Head of Humanitarian and Emergency Affairs

As head of World Vision Australia’s Humanitarian and Emergency Affairs, Anthea is responsible for coordinating our response to all natural disasters as well as protracted crises. With a Masters in International Development and an honours degree in Government and Public Administration, Anthea has expertise in humanitarian advocacy and emergency response. She has created training programmes in Australia and the Asia Pacific region for various agencies including World Vision, Oxfam, UNHCR and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent. Previously she has worked as World Vision International’s Global Humanitarian Policy Advisor covering emergency response in such contexts as Afghanistan, Sudan, South Sudan, DRC and Myanmar. 

Ash Knopp

Ash Knop 
Director of Corporate, Church and Community

As Director of Corporate, Church and Community, Ash focuses on developing our relationships with individuals as well as corporate supporters, leading World Vision’s engagement with business, church and community organisations and helping to build partnerships that allow us to multiply the impact of our work for the world’s most vulnerable people. 

Brian-Hilton

Brian Hilton 
Food Security Advisor

As World Vision’s advisor on food security, Brian is drawing on over 20 years’ experience including 17 years working with World Vision in Mozambique as an agricultural field manager and research and extensions specialist. Whilst in Mozambique, Brian worked on projects with cropping systems in cashews, coconut, maize, vegetables and many other crops. He has also worked in Chad as a manager of an animal traction training centre and as a lecturer at an Indonesian University. Brian has currently started to implement a new program in Burundi involving high iron beans. Supported by World Vision Australia this project aims to increase nutrition within the country.

Erin Joyce

Erin Joyce 
Humanitarian and Emergency Affairs

Erin specialises in protection and psycho-social support for children and families, as well as overseeing programs designed to help populations in fragile states become more resilient against shocks such as drought and food shortages. She has worked in response to the Haiti Earthquake in 2010, post-conflict recovery in Sri Lanka, the West Africa food Crisis in Niger and Mali and the South Sudan crisis. After graduating with degrees in International Studies and International and Community Development, Erin joined World Vision Australia’s Humanitarian and Emergency Affairs team five years ago. She is currently completing a Master of Social Work at RMIT.

melissa-stewart

Melissa Stewart
Senior Advisor, Trafficking in Persons

Melissa has over 12 years experience working on policy and program responses to human trafficking and labour exploitation in the Asia and Pacific region and beyond. With degrees in both law and international development, Melissa acted as Technical Advisor to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime Regional Office for East Asia and the Pacific for two years. Previously, Melissa was Senior Policy Advisor and Acting Deputy Programme Manager with a UN inter-agency project on human trafficking, UNIAP. Melissa has extensive knowledge on human trafficking, migrant labour, child protection, business and human rights, and the criminal justice response to trafficking.

Peter Baynard-Smith

Peter Baynard-Smith 
Technical Business Partners Manager

As head of World Vision Australia’s Technical Business Partners, Peter oversees a team providing expertise in economic development, health, gender, child protection, water and sanitation, social accountability, food security, research and evaluation. With over 20 years’ experience as an international relief and development professional in Africa and Asia, Peter, a qualified engineer, has worked across water, infrastructure, renewable energy and emergency response projects with World Vision and Concern Worldwide. He has also held leadership roles at the Foundation for Young Australians and Mission Australia. 

Prasanna De Silva

Prasanna De Silva 
Field Relations Manager

As World Vision Australia’s Field Relations Manager, Prasanna is responsible for managing much of our work in the field as well as liaising with World Vision offices around the world. With 22 years’ experience in international development, working in Sri Lanka, Mongolia, Laos and Armenia, Prasanna has worked as World Vision’s Operations director in several countries responsible for building staff capacity, successfully mentoring and promoting local staff to key leadership positions, as well as managing large scale community development projects. As Program Director and Acting National Director for World Vision Armenia, Prasanna managed a range of development programs, large multi stakeholder relationships and complex Global Funds grants. Prasanna has an excellent understanding of poor and marginalised communities, community mobilisation, interfaith work and poverty reduction.

tony-rinaudo

Tony Rinaudo
Natural Resources Management Specialist

Tony is involved in the development and promotion of agricultural-forestry-pastoral systems across a range of environments. He spent 18 years in Niger managing a long-term agricultural development program. The natural-regeneration reforestation methods Tony developed contributed to over five million hectares of land being re-vegetated in Niger. Tony was also instrumental in introducing edible seeded Australian acacias into Nigerien farming systems and for their promotion as a human food. Tony’s specialist areas are de-/reforestation, desertification, food security, sustainable farming and food production. Tony’s current focus is promoting reforestation internationally and facilitating ongoing research and development of edible seeded Australian acacias.