The International Organizing Committee advises the World Forum Foundation on future directions for the World Forum. Members are appointed for four year terms. Current members are:
Fredericka Dadson: Ghana (2011)
Irma Allen: Swaziland (2013)
Henry Manani: Kenya (2013)
Reeta Sonawat: India (2011)
Antarina Amir: Indonesia (2011)
Maysoun Chehab: Lebanon (2013)
Betsy van de Grift: Netherlands (2013)
Kenny Spence: Scotland (2013)
Sasa Milic: Montenegro (2013)
Ivan Galindo: Mexico (2011)
Valeria Andreetto: Brazil (2013)
Martha Llanos: Peru (2013)
Wayne Eastman: Canada (2011)
Carole Logie: Trinidad (2011)
Ellen Hall: USA (2013)
Andrew Ikupu: Papua New Guinea (2011)
Ruci Kididromo: Fiji (2011)
Ian Alchin: Australia (2013)
My name is Fredericka Dadson. I am a Ghanaian who lives and works in Ghana. I am a Professor in English at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in Kumasi, Ghana.
I became a member of the World Forum in 2005 as a result of my work with children in an early child care centre in Kumasi which my husband and I established in 2001, under the guidance of the Director and Assistant Director of University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee’s Children’s Centre. I am serving a second term as National Rep.(Ghana); and I have recently been honoured with membership of the Forum’s International Organizing Committee and a fellow of the Global Leaders Group.
Irma Allen is an internationally recognized education and environment specialist, with wide experience in development work in Africa, Latin America and the Middle East.
One of her main interests is to promote and assist the process of integrating environment into formal and non formal education at all levels (specially early childhood).
She resides in Swaziland and has worked there as a teacher, University lecturer, Director of In-service Education, and technical advisor to Projects in curriculum development and teacher education. She also works closely with the Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCD) Unit of the Ministry of Education developing materials, training teachers, and monitoring and evaluating ECCD programs.
Apart from her consulting work, she currently serves as Chairperson of the Boards of SOS Kinderdorf, the Baha’i Schools, and the Swaziland Environment Authority. In 1988, she was awarded a Global 500 Award from the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
I am the National Programme Co-ordinator of the National Centre for Early Childhood (NACECE) at the Kenya Institute of Education (KIE). I have been working for children for the last 20 years at NACECE. NACECE started as a pre-school research project in 1972 and later was established as a National Programme in 1984 by the Ministry of Education. NACECE is based at KIE and has a network of sub-centres in all districts, cities, and municipalities in the country. NACECE has developed into a regional centre catering to training needs of the Africa region. The mission of NACECE is to take the lead and network with other stakeholders to promote ECD programmes for Kenyan children in areas of cognitive, psychomotor, socio-emotional, aesthetic, moral, spiritual, and cultural development.
Dr. Reeta Sonawat is a Professor and Head in the department of Human Development, SNDT Women’s University, Mumbai. For post doctoral research, she worked on project “Integrated Kindergarten and primary Schools” in Bremen University, Germany. She Underwent training in Early Childhood Education: Reading Difficulties at Golda Meir Mount Carmel Institute and Training Center, Haifa, Israel. Dr. Sonawat is a recipient of National Award for “Teacher Trainer” in innovative training for the project “Improving Classroom Environment towards Quality in Education” and Faculty Research Fellowship by Shastri Indo Canadian Institute for project titled “Adolescent of minority Groups, Sense of Belongingness to Society”.
She was invited speaker in Philippines, Indonesia, Athens, Brazil and Newzealand. She has done a certificate course on Qualitative Research from summer Programme in Social and Cultural Psychiatry, McGill University, Canada. She has presented various workshops on Quality in Early Childhood Education, Whole Language Approach. She is a consultant to various National Institutions.She has written books on Science for Pre school children, Music and movemeent for young children, Understanding Children’s Rights, Creativity for Pre school children.
She is selected as a global leader in Early childhood Education in Montreal, Canada and presented a paper on “ECE in India,” 2005. As a part of a Global leader her assignment was to do Advocacy for young children, she reach out more than 1500 parents and 200 teachers, she wrote in the news papers and published booklets for parents and teachers.
Feb, 2006 she has presented her Advocacy work in Reggio Emilia, Italy. The town known for Education.
My name is Antarina Amir from Indonesia. I have been working in the education field for more than 25 years, when I started to work at the university where I studied. I started the to have passion in education for early childhood when I realized that I have to make a change in the education system in Indonesia and to contribute a better generation for the country. Education at the early ages is the most appropriate mean to realize my purposes.
Currently I manage an educational institution located in Jakarta, namely the High/Scope Indonesia, that has a school serving children from early childhood to high school.
I am Maysoun Chehab, the ECCD Program Coordinator at the Arab Resource Collective (ARC). ARC is a regional non-profit independent organization founded in 1988; ARC works with partners in several Arab countries:Lebanon, Syria, Palestine, Jordan, Sudan, Yemen, and Egypt. ARC’s mission is to build on the capacities of each person and on people’s experience in order to develop knowledge and translate rights into reality. It adopts a holistic and integrated approach to development, and practices collective work through consultation, networking and partnerships. Our objective is to produce resources, build capacities and generally nurture the resource culture in Arab countries.
Betsy van de Grift
I started working as a psychiatric nurse when I was 17 years old and have been working in the care industry since then for about ten years. After that I worked as a social worker with children and mentally disabled children and adults. In the mean time I studied social work, too.
When it came to a point that I became a manager, I shifted from care and social work to childcare.
After finishing a study business administration a became a managing director of three childcare companies in a row.
The most interesting phase in my carrier was, when the childcare industry was privatised in my country: in 2005. That was – by law- a very big change for everyone: both for the parents and the providers of childcare as well. From that point the companies were no longer subsidised, but now the parents are! You can imagine the change that has caused…
Now, since 2008 I’m working as a publicist and consultant. I’m very much interested in the developments in early care and education, developments in my own country and all over the world. I think we have so much to share and to learn from each other. And, on top of that, our World Forum is so much fun!
Kenny Spence is a tireless campaigner for the need to have more men working in childcare. He was responsible for the setting up and success of various childcare initiatives, including the hugely successful Men in Childcare Project, which has had over 900 male students undertake childcare training. The Project which started in Edinburgh expanded across Scotland and is now U.K. wide.
Kenny in partnership with One Parent Families Scotland was also instrumental in the setting up of the Lone Fathers Project, which enables fathers to gain better parenting skills as well as giving them a chance to mix with other men who are in the same predicament. As Manager of the Gilmerton Child & Family Centre he set in motion an easy learning and accessible computer system for children, which resulted in him being invited to speak at the IBM Conference in Amsterdam. Having spoken on the subject of Men in Childcare at conferences all over Europe he is now in partnership with a host of countries from the European Union, in the Men in Childcare European Network which helps push forward the Men in Childcare ethos on a European front.
-Central National Library of Montenegro »Djurdje Crnojevic« – Cetinje – Librarian (1990-1991)
-Public Library »Radosav Ljumovic« – Podgorica – Librarian (1991-1994)
-International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent – Podgorica – Social Worker (1994-1995)
-Open Society Institute Montenegro – Podgorica – Program Coordinator (1996-2001)
-Pedagogical Center of Montenegro – Podgorica – Executive Director (2001-2002)
University of Montenegro – Faculty of Philosophy – Associated Professor (Departments for: Primary School Teahcers, Preschool Teachers, Pedagoges, Albanian Primary
-School Teachers) and Chair of Department for Preschool Education (2002-2008…);
-Teaching following subjects/course: General Pedagogy, Modern Education Systems, Interactive Teaching, Intercultural Pedagogy, Comparative Pedagogy, Modern Pedagogical Theories, Experimental Programs for Early Childhood Education, Evaluation of Preschool and Primray School
I have been a school principal of Infantes y Crayones and Colegio Erik Erikson, working with children from 18 months to 15 years, for 17 years and teacher for 28 years. I am also the High/Scope Mexico Institute Director. I was in the first generation of Global Leaders and currently involved in the training of the new generations. I am a High/Scope trainer and I do consulting in educational process oriented to participatory education and learning organizations.
I am a psychologist with a master in Social Psychology and and a MBA. I am writing a book about conflict solution in schools with a systemic perspective oriented to the group learning and not to the search and punish conventional strategy.
I have two children 18 and 16 and I enjoy them a lot.
Valéria Gonçales Andreetto
Little Baby Angelo´s mother.
Brazilian, Economist, post-graduated in Interactive Technology applied to Education by the Catholic University of São Paulo, Brazil. She holds an MBA in Technology of Information and Communication by the Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil.
Director of Pequeñitos and Jardim dos Pequeñitos, two schools for early childhood education in Santo André, São Paulo, Brazil. She has been working with early childhood education for the last 20 years.
Current President of OMEP/BR/SP, RedSolare/SP coordinator, researcher and the one who spreads information out of Reggio Emília approach. In love of childhood and fighter of children’s rights.
Martha Llanos is a Human Development Specialist from Lima, Peru, however she considers herself a world citizen. Her permanent life mission is to contribute to the flourishing of children; she has a worldwide pioneer work in the field of early childhood development and was the first UNICEF Regional Advisor for Latin America and the Caribbean. Her extensive contribution to the well being of children, women and families in more than 50 countries was recognized with the Nathalie Masse award from the International Children Centre in France in 1988.
She studied Psychology at the Catholic University in Peru and her post graduate studies at Strathclyde University in Scotland and Nijmegen, Netherlands with specialization in Developmental and Social Psychology. She initiated her professional life as researcher in the field of poverty and human development, with pioneer studies on intellectual functioning of children in deprived areas, patterns of child rearing, transitions home and schools, family and school values and interactions. She is involved in the theme of “ Resilience” the capacity of human beings to overcome and transform adversity and best examples are the indigenous children and women, she plays tribute and recognition to the values and knowledge of the original people. She has lived with indigenous people in countries of three Continents, Peru, Nepal and Lesotho.
She has recently been awarded recognition from the Peruvian University as an Honorary Professor and Extraordinary Researcher for her contribution towards understanding children and women in poverty contexts and her commitment towards inclusion, diversity and peace.
She loves music, dance, theatre and storytelling. As an artherapist she is contributing to the healing of children in emergencies and armed conflicts worldwide.
She has pioneer work on early childhood in many international organizations: UNICEF, World Bank, UNESCO, World Health Organisation, World Food Programme, Van Leer and others. Currently she is an International Consultant devoted to evaluation and planning of early childhood programmes and to the advocacy and development of policies for the fulfillment of children’s rights.
Wayne Eastman is the coordinator of the Early Childhood Education Department at the College of the North Atlantic, Corner Brook, NL, Canada. Wayne is the former President of the Canadian Association for Young Children. Wayne was the recipient of the 2004 Friends of Children Award. This is a national award that recognizes outstanding contributions by individuals to the well-being of young children.
St. Augustine, Trinidad and Tobago
Dr. Logie is the Chair of the National Council for Early Childhood Education and a lecturer at the University of the West Indies. Her area of specialization is early childhood care and development and during her thirty years of international and regional experience in the field of early education, she continues to be an advocate for children. As an international consultant she has worked for the Inter-American Development Bank, World Bank, Unicef, and The Bernard van Leer Foundation, she continues to work as a consultant to teachers and policy makers in Hong Kong, Europe and the Caribbean.
She enjoys sharing experiences with children and has worked as a preschool teacher in Spain, Canada, and the United Kingdom. Dr Logie is the Administrative Director of The University of The West Indies – Family Development and Children’s Research Centre on the St. Augustine Campus. She is the Caribbean representative and Executive Member of The World Forum for Early Childhood Care and Education- the International Association for early childhood policy- makers, educators and administrators.
Ellen Hall is the founder and executive director of Boulder Journey School, a school for young children in Boulder, Colorado. She is the director of the Teacher Education Program developed at the school through partnerships with the University of Colorado Denver and the Colorado Department of Education. Ellen is a partner in Videatives, Inc., an educational publishing and professional development company. She is a founding member of the North American Reggio Emilia Alliance (NAREA) and serves on its board. She is also a founder and member of the board of Hawkins Centers of Learning, inspired by the work and lives of educators, David and Frances Hawkins.
Bio coming soon!
I am Ruci Kididromo of Fiji Islands. Have been involved in the early childhood field for more than 30 years. I have worked in a range of positions in the early childhood field in my country including teacher, supervisor, advisor, senior administrator and currently responsible for the writing of our very first curriculum guideline in Fiji. Started writing the curriculum with about twelve writers in 2006, and completed in April, 2007.
In May, 2007, we started the Awareness and Train the Trainer programme for the curriculum guideline and towards the end of 2007, we are editing, reviewing, and rewriting our first draft. Hope to have draft 2 in May 2008. I have a lot of passion in the work I do with young children in my country and I enjoy doing it.
Ministry of Education – Curriculum Development Unit
Vinod Patel Building, Stewart Street, Suva
Tel. (679) 3306077 Ext.211 Fax 3305953
P.S. – I was asked to pick a project so I can be an observer and cheerleader for one of our great World Forum projects. I am interested to be part of the Men in Early Care and Education.
Ian Alchin has been the manager of not-for-profit early childhood services for 25 years in Metropolitan West area of Sydney, Australia. The services include long day care, preschool, occasional care, multipurpose, early intervention services, family Support services and Early Literacy projects.
Ian is currently developing a new not-for-profit early childhood organisation that has the UN rights of the child and social justice as its foundation. He has a commitment to improving the training and capacity of early childhood professionals to implement practices that respond to contemporary research regarding children’s learning, development and well-being.