INEE Country Focal Points
INEE Country Focal Points (CFPs) are envisioned to be key reference persons at country level, tasked to support networking and communication, particularly through the facilitation of information exchange among INEE members. Read more about these new roles in the Terms of Reference document.
The selected CFPs have a wide range of backgrounds and areas of expertise, and have demonstrated a commitment to education in emergencies work, and to promoting the values, priorities, and activities of INEE. The CFPs represent the geographic and linguistic diversity of the broader network.
Continue below to read about the new INEE Country Focal Points, as well as details about their roles, ways to engage with them, the selection process, and more about the overall CFP initiative.
Musharraf Tansen - Bangladesh
Musharraf is the INEE Country Focal Point for Bangladesh. He has over 20 years of work experience in the field of education including Education in Emergencies, Early Childhood Development, Early Grade Reading & Literacy. He has experience of working with several international and national development organizations including Plan, World Vision, SDC, Friendship, Save the Children, IOM, DFID and British Council. His experience ranges from working extensively in the grassroots, developing and implementing programs for providing education to disadvantaged groups, to contributing policy reforms at the national level. The various portfolios that he held have allowed him to expand his understanding of the dynamics and intricacies of education programming, especially in a developing country context and gain expertise in program design and planning, implementation (including monitoring, evaluation) and management. His long experience as an education project implementer provides him with the technical competencies needed for running any range of education programs. His Bachelor of Education (Honors) degree and Master degree in Education from Dhaka University strengthen his ability to perform as an effective leader in the education sector. Recently, he was working for Plan International Bangladesh as the Technical Lead for Education in Emergencies in the world’s largest refugee camps in Cox’s bazar. Currently, he is supporting Malala Fund as a country consultant for conducting an education landscape analysis of Bangladesh focusing on girls’ access and inclusion. Musharraf is Bangladeshi and speaks Bengali and English.
Anderson Pereira Santiago - Brazil
Anderson is the INEE Country Focal Point for Brazil. He graduated in International Relations, worked as "Peace Agent" for the World Peace Initiative Foundation (WPI - Thailand), and was a Regional Coordinator for the newspaper “Brasil de Fato”. Since 2018, he is a volunteer of the Fraternity - International Humanitarian Federation (FFHI). He was a Coordinator for the Emergency Education in the Roraima Humanitarian Mission (north of Brazil) and the Colombia Humanitarian Mission, Anderson acquired solid experience in emergency education, bilingual intercultural education, and educational projects oriented to the migrant refugee population, including indigenous ethnic groups. Anderson currently serves as a member of the Humanitarian Fraternity (FIHF) Management Committee since 2019. He is also one of the core trainers of the Sphere Standards (Handbook). He is Brazilian, fluent in Portuguese (native), Spanish, and English.
Bana Barka - Cameroon
Bana is the INEE Country Focal Point for Cameroon. Bana Barka is a graduate of the Ecole Normale Supérieure de Maroua and holds a PhD in African literature. Author of half a dozen articles on Cameroonian literature, he is also interested in issues related to education in emergency situations. As a consultant, he has conducted numerous investigations on behalf of international organizations, notably on the identification of barriers that limit refugees' access to education and on the inclusion of vulnerable groups in the prevention of violent extremism. Member of the Centre d’Études et de Recherche en Paix, Sécurité et Intégration (CERPSI) and Coordinator of Nexus Peace & Education, he has devoted several studies to the Koranic school and the difficulties of adaptation of this institution in the states of the Lake Chad Basin. Bana is currently a lecturer at the Ecole Normale Supérieure de Maroua and a literature enthusiast, and is also active in the field of educational sciences: to this end, he is pursuing a Master's degree in Peace and Security, with a dissertation focused on security in crises situations and its impact on education in the Far North region. Bana is Cameroonian and speaks Msir and French.
Lizeth Estephany Cardozo Rodriguez - Colombia
Lizeth is the INEE Country Focal Point for Colombia. She holds a Master’s in Social Pedagogy and Educational Intervention in Social and Humanitarian Contexts from the Universidad del Norte. She is passionate about promoting the right to a safe and uninterrupted education to every child affected by humanitarian crises. Lizeth was recognized as a Young Researcher by Colciencias (National Department of Science, Technology and Innovation of Colombia) in the North of Santander. Her research work is related to the care of the most vulnerable populations affected by emergencies linked to the Colombian armed conflict and migratory phenomenon of Venezuelan origin and has been published in articles and book chapters in indexed journals. She currently works for the Norwegian Refugee Council as Technical Education Officer in northeastern Colombia. Lizeth is Colombian and speaks Spanish and English.
Vano Grigolashvili - Georgia
Vano is the INEE Country Focal Point for Georgia. He has devoted almost 20 years of his professional life to working on issues related to disaster management, DRR, building community resilience, and advocating for improved quality of life for vulnerable groups of the population. His experience includes working with the national, regional and International NGOs and UN agencies, such as UNDP, UNICEF, Save the Children, World Vision International, Oxfam, Academy for Educational Development, Regional Environmental Center for the Caucasus, specializing in disaster management capacity building, emergency response operations, livelihoods development, civil society strengthening and promotion of human rights. While based in Georgia, he also remotely supports various civil society organizations in Eastern Europe and the Middle East. Currently, he leads the Disaster Risk Reduction Center and RDFG, established with the purpose to improve the wellbeing of vulnerable communities and strengthen their self-reliance. His educational background is International Humanitarian Law strengthened through the range of educational courses, training, and learning-by-doing approach. Vano is Georgian and speaks Georgian and English.
Talot Bertrand - Haiti
Talot is the INEE Country Focal Point for Haiti. He is a trainer of trainers of the INEE Minimum Standards. He is an Agricultural Engineer and Specialist in Environmental Education. In South Korea, he studied communication and information management for emergency situations involving diseases. He was awarded a scholarship to study biodiversity conservation and environmental protection as part of the International Visitor Leadership Program of the U.S. Department of State. He worked as Head of Planning and Resource Mobilization in the Directorate for Civil Protection, where he served as Focal Point for the World Food Program and the Ministry of Public Health. He also worked for other institutions such as the Ministry of Agriculture, PAHO-WHO and the National Agency of Protected Areas of the Ministry of Environment. Since 2009, he has been campaigning for education and building public awareness on disaster risk management and biodiversity conservation. Talot is Haitian and speaks French, Creole and English.
Sahar Bani Mustafa - Jordan
Sahar is the INEE Country Focal Point for Jordan. She has been working in the humanitarian field for nearly 5 years, mainly focusing on education, child protection, and child poverty projects in emergency contexts. She has also provided technical guidance regarding livelihood aspects to conflict-affected families and supported processes of reintegration of children who fled from their homes to Jordan as a result of the Syrian crisis. In the last 2 years Sahar has moved to focus on professional development programs, currently working to build the capacity of EiE practitioners in the Middle East, North Africa and Eastern Europe Region. She also has a strong record of volunteering, supporting children in remote areas with educational activities. Sahar is a Jordanian and speaks Arabic and English.
Loise Gichuhi - Kenya
Dr. Loise Gichuhi is the INEE Country Focal Point for Kenya. She has a PhD in Economics of Education from the University of Nairobi, a Master’s in Education Planning and Curriculum Development and a Bachelor of Education (Mathematics and Economics) from Kenyatta University. Loise has extensive experience and expertise in education policy, planning and curriculum development; education in emergencies programming, implementation, monitoring and, evaluation. She has developed training materials and delivered training of trainers’ programs, national and international needs assessments as well as conducted research. She is a recognized university educator, currently working as a Senior Lecturer and EiE Project Coordinator at the University of Nairobi, an education consultant for UNESCO IIEP and in a World Bank-funded Ministry of Education project. Additionally, she works as an Education and Livelihoods Expert with a local NGO, Education Bridge Africa, and has done community work in marginalized counties and in the informal settlement communities for over 2 decades. She is a member of various global and national advisory groups. Loise is Kenyan and speaks Swahili and English.
Lopes Nazaré Lopes - Mozambique
Lopes Nazaré Lopes is the INEE Country Focal Point for Mozambique. He holds a PhD in Entrepreneurship Education from the Commonwealth Open University and a Masters Degree in Business Management from De Montfort University. He has fifteen years of experience in education project management for international organizations. He has been a university lecturer and teacher trainer for 27 years. Lopes is Mozambican and speaks Portuguese and English.
Isaac Olugbenle - Nigeria
Isaac is the INEE Country Focal Point for Nigeria. He holds a graduate degree in Physics/Electronics from the Federal University of Technology, Minna and a Postgraduate Diploma in Education from the University of Maiduguri. He is also currently a Master’s student in Education Planning and Administration at the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN). He has ten years of experience in the field of education and has worked as a classroom teacher, early career researcher for girls' education and currently supporting education programming in northeast Nigeria. He holds experience in supporting the planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of EiE interventions, which includes formal and non-formal education for children and adolescents in both developing and humanitarian settings. He currently works as an Education Programme Manager with the IRC Nigeria country programme. Isaac is Nigerian and speaks English, Hausa and Yoruba languages.
Pilar López-Dafonte Suanzes - Spain
Pilar is the INEE Country Focal Point for Spain. She has more than 10 years of experience in humanitarian action and education in emergency programs. She has lived in different countries in Latin America and Asia, where she contributed to define strategies and priorities for access and permanence to quality education for vulnerable communities. She is now in Responsible for Humanitarian Action within Entreculturas Foundation and a Focal Point for emergencies for the Xavier Network, a network of 14 organizations in Europe, Canada and Australia. Pilar is Spanish and based in Madrid, Spain. Along with Spanish, she speaks several languages such as English, French, Creole, Haitian and Romanian.
Bilal Khalifa - Syria
Bilal Mahmoud Khalifa is the INEE Country Focal Point for Syria. He is a dialogue facilitator and trainer in child protection and education. He has a long experience in education in emergencies, mental health, psychosocial support and socio-emotional learning. In Syria, he has reopened schools since 2012 in order to provide education to children in areas affected by the ongoing war. He also joined humanitarian organizations such as Hand in Hand, Childhood Guards and Chemonex. He holds a BA in Arabic Literature from the University of Aleppo, a Diploma in Education and is currently developing a Master's thesis concerning children. Bilal is Syrian and speaks Arabic and English.
Ways to engage with the CFPs
INEE Country Focal Points play a crucial role in building and nurturing relationships between INEE members in their country, and they implement specific activities to this end:
- Convene meetings of the national membership (e.g. Meet-Ups).
- Promote new INEE membership in the country.
- Build linkages and support communication between INEE members in country.
- Contribute resources, news, and other country information for global INEE newsletters and other communication platforms, network spaces, and resources.
We encourage INEE members to contact their country focal points to:
- Submit questions you may have on ways to engage as an INEE member;
- Share country and regional-level EiE resources, tools, events, and other information, so it can be disseminated both in country and to the broader network;
- Suggest ideas for thematic, country, regional, and/or audience-specific webinars or discussions you would like INEE to organize. (Be ready to volunteer!)
- Send thoughts and ideas for how the INEE Country Focal Point could engage with existing INEE members and recruit new members at the country level.
If there isn’t yet an INEE Country Focal Point in your country, we encourage you to reach out to CFPs operating in your language and/or region. Also, please don't hesitate to contact email@example.com with any queries, suggestions, and other thoughts!
In February 2021, twelve INEE Country Focal Points were selected from among nearly 100 applicants from all over the world. The candidates’ range of backgrounds, expertise, languages, and levels of engagement with INEE was remarkable, making the limited selection for the February-July 2021 pilot phase of the initiative all the more difficult.
The selection committee, composed of INEE Secretariat staff, reviewed all of the applications, and weighed them against several criteria and considerations, both on an individual level and as an incoming cohort. These included geographic and linguistic representation, type of EiE context, operational reach (local, national, regional), areas of expertise, gender balance, and more. The selected CFPs represent a wide range of backgrounds, geography, languages, and areas of expertise, and they have demonstrated a strong commitment to education in emergencies work, and to promoting the values, priorities, and activities of INEE.
About the INEE Country Focal Point initiative
The initiative started with a 6-month pilot phase (February-July 2021), which is intended as proof of concept for a larger rollout in the future. As such, and aligned with the limited supervisory capacity of the INEE Secretariat, only 12 focal points were selected for the pilot phase. This, of course, results in a very limited representation of the INEE network membership, which resides in more than 190 countries.
The intention is to scale up the initiative following the 6-month pilot phase, and after an internal evaluation is conducted. Depending on the results of the pilot phase, a new call for applications is expected to be launched in the second half of 2021. All active INEE members are encouraged to apply at that time!