Professor Rachel Jewkes

Consortium Director: What Works To Prevent Violence? Global Programme

South African Medical Research Council

Professor Rachel Jewkes is the Director of the What Works to Prevent Violence Global Programme, as well as the Director of the South African Medical Research Council’s Gender and Health Research Unit and Secretary of the Sexual Violence Research Initiative. She is an Honorary Professor at the University of the Witwatersrand School of Public Health and a public health physician. She has spent 20 years undertaking research into violence against women and girls and gender inequity and health, mainly in South Africa. She was the lead technical advisor to the UN Multi-Country Study on Men and Violence in Asia and the Pacific, is a member of the WHO Expert Advisory Panel on Injury and Violence Prevention and Control and the WHO Scientific and Technical Advisory Group on HIV. She is an author of over 150 peer reviewed journal publications, and more than a 100 book chapters, reviews and technical reports.

Dr. Tirhani Manganyi

Global Programme Manager

South African Medical Research Council

Dr. Tirhani Manganyi is a South African national with over 15 years of experience in international development, research and grants acquisition and management (GAM). She has vast experience in the development as well as the management community-based programs, gender and development (GAD); monitoring and evaluation (M&E), program and project management, including proposal development. Dr Manganyi brings to her new role over 5 years of experience at senior management level and worked with multiple countries in Southern Africa. For 4 years, she has worked and supported 9 countries with proposal development as well as the management of programs funded by private, bilateral and multilateral donors. In her role as Regional Grants Quality Assurance Advisor in World Vision International, Dr Manganyi managed a portfolio of at least $400mil across the 9 countries from various donors that had diverse compliance modalities and requirements.  Dr. Manganyi possess proven capacity development, technical and management skills as well as strong networking and liaising capabilities to engage various donors; host governments, universities, and community-based stakeholders throughout the life of the project cycle to build capacity and ensure local ownership as well as sustainability of projects. She holds a PhD in Agricultural Education and Communication as well as a certificate in Gender and Development from the University of Florida, USA. She is also certified in Project Management, training and she recently completed the Hostile Environment Awareness Training (HEAT).

Samantha Willan

Capacity Development Manager

South African Medical Research Council

Samantha Willan is the Capacity Development Manager for What Works, she has over 15 years’ experience working on preventing violence against women and girls, gender equality, sexuality, and HIV, from a women’s rights perspective. Her work spans research, capacity development, training and policy influencing. Predominantly based in South Africa over that time, her focus has been across southern and eastern Africa and South Asia, with a global outlook in relation to research and policy developments. Prior to joining the What Works Global Programme, Samantha co-founded and was Project Lead for the Gender Equality and Health Programme at HEARD, which undertook research and programming to prevent violence against women and reduce women’s HIV risk. Previous to this, she was Policy Advisor on HIV&AIDS and Gender at VSO International, and Information Manager for the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Samantha has a Masters in Political Science.

Dr. Leane Ramsoomar

Research Uptake Manager

South African Medical Research Council

Dr. Leane Ramsoomar holds a PhD in Public Health from the University of the Witwatersrand, a Master’s degree in Health Promotion (with distinction) from the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal, an Honors degree in Psychology from the University of Durban-Westville and a BA degree (Cum Laude) from the same university. Leane has over 14 years’ experience in research and academia, starting her career at the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC). Prior to her appointment as Research Uptake Manager in the Global What Works to Prevent Violence Against Women and Girls? Programme, Leane was an honorary lecturer at the School of Public Health at the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits), Johannesburg, South Africa and an independent public health consultant. Between 2009- 2013 she was a full time lecturer in the Master of Public Health programme at Wits. Leane has extensive experience working with international University and donor organizations, including, the Universities of Kentucky and Ohio, The World Health Organization, and UNICEF. Her research interests include youth risk behavior, with particular focus on youth alcohol use, HIV prevention, health promotion and behavior change.

Cuthbert Asiimwe

Contracts and Finance Manager

South African Medical Research Council

Cuthbert is an experienced Fellow Chartered Accountant (FCCA) certified by the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) in the United Kingdom. He is also a holder of an honours bachelor of science degree in applied accounting awarded by Oxford Brookes University in the United Kingdom. He joins the MRC-Gender & Health Research Unit’s “What Works Global Programme” with 10 years proven progressive work experience in financial management gained from regional and international organisations in Uganda, South Africa, Zimbabwe and the United Kingdom. The bulk of his experience has focused on the NGO sector where he has supported various multi-donor funded projects such as; “Consortium for Elections and Political Process Strengthening (CEPPS) III” program funded by USAID and implemented by the International Republican Institute (IRI) in Uganda and Zimbabwe; Psycho-social care and support service delivery for families caring for orphans and vulnerable children in KwaZulu-Natal Province” funded by USAID and implemented by the Regional Psycho-Social Support Initiative (REPSSI) working with both the National and Provincial Department of Social Development in South Africa; Advocacy and mainstreaming of Psycho-social support initiatives implemented by REPSSI and funded by Swiss Agency for Development and Corporation (SDC), Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) and the Novartis Foundation for Sustainability Development (NFSD); Multi-donor funded interventions implemented by Restless Development, a youth-led development agency in the United Kingdom operating in Africa and Asia.