About us

Governance & Assurance

We are committed to ensuring the highest standards of transparency and accountability and competent management over public funds programmed through our member organisations and partners.


Start Network is a company and charity registered in England and Wales with company registration number 09286835 and charity registration number 1159483. 

Governance & Assurance> Governance bodies| Management & Administration| Due diligence & vetting| Impact

Governance bodies

The Start Network is governed by its Board of Trustees, which takes its steer from the membership, represented by the Assembly. The Board is responsible for implementing the agreed strategy as well as all other governance matters, such as cost-effectiveness and efficiency, brand protection, and oversight of the Sub-Committees and the Start Network CEO and CFOO. 

Read Start Network's Strategy 2020-2022.



The Assembly, made up of representatives from all Start members, sets the Network’s strategic direction and acts as a sounding board that informs the Network’s evolution. Its role is primarily advisory in nature, but the Assembly retains three important governance responsibilities: approving new members to the Network; approving the election of new Trustees to the Board, and; overseeing the Board’s performance.


Chair: Christof Gabriel Maetze (Independent)

Oversees the sub-committees and team performance; provides strategic steer; approves the annual business plan and budget; considers new programmes and services. The Board has delegated authority to make decisions on behalf of the Assembly, but takes its steer from and is accountable to the membership. 

We believe that decisions about the Network should be transparent, so we publish summary Board minutes here.



The board /  The assembly

Alexandre Giraud

CEO, Solidarites International

Mireille Flores

Humanitarian Programmes Manager, World Jewish Relief

Christof Gabriel Maetze

Chair of the Board of Trustees

Bob Ruxton

Head of International Support, Concern Worldwide

Dan Collison

Programme Director, War Child

Nick Guttmann

Head of Humanitarian Division, Christian Aid

Rose Caldwell

Executive Director, Concern

Mahendra Gunatilleke

National Director, Caritas Sri Lanka

Samar Muhareb

Director, ARDD-Legal Aid

Darren Cormack

Director of Business Development & Partnerships, Mines Advisory Group (MAG)

Degan Ali

Executive Director, Adeso (African Development Solutions)

Rabia Sabri

Associate Director, Community World Service Asia

Binny Prabhakar


Lola Gostelow

Humanitarian Policy Analyst

Alexandre Giraud

Director of Operations, Solidarites International

Anthony Bonhommeau

Operational Development Manager, ALIMA

Richard Corbett

Humanitarian Lead, Oxfam

Degan Ali

Executive Director, Adeso (African Development Solutions)

Benjamin Laniado


Fiona Gannon

Head of Programmes, GOAL

Jennifer Poidatz

Director, Humanitarian Response Department

Isabelle Risso-Gill

Programme Manager Disaster Risk Management Unit, Plan

Maria Rudencinda Orella

Executive Director, PRO-VIDA

Noreen Gumbo

Head of Humanitarian Programmes, Trocaire

Noreen Gumbo

Head of Humanitarian Programmes, Trocaire

Waseem Ahmad

Director of International Programmes, Islamic Relief

Nasser Abu Al Atta

President, PARC

Sanjayan Srikanthan

Emergency Field Director, International Rescue Committee

Selena Victor

Interim Director of Policy & Advocacy, Mercy Corps

Mohammed Al-Ghamdi

Executive Director, Qatar Charity

Ognjen Radosavljevic

Director of Programmes and Partnerships, International Medical Corps

Wim den Hartog

Partnerships Manager, Dorcas Aid

Shaima Al Zarooni

Director of Special Initiatives at the Office of HRH Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein

Mujeeb Akhtar

Institutional Funding Manager, Muslim Aid

Helen Thompson

Deputy Head of Humanitarian Programmes, Care

Jamie Hall

Head of Performance & Accountability, Relief International

Annelies Claessens

Humanitarian Director, Cordaid

Mohammed Afsar

Head of Humanitarian, Islamic Relief

Andrew Collodel

Head of Humanitarian Team, HelpAge International

Aleema Shivji

Director, Handicap International

Ellen Waters

Director of Development, Doctors of the World

Mike Noyes

Head of Humanitarian Resilience & Response, Action Aid

Andre Krummacher

Director of programmes, ACTED

Oenone Chadburn

Humanitarian Director, Tearfund

Gareth Owen

Humanitarian Director, Save the Children UK

Paul Astruc


Benjamin Laniado


Matthew Carter

Humanitarian Director, Cafod

Francis Atul Sarker

Executive Director, Caritas Bangladesh

Mark Bulpitt

Head of Humanitarian, World Vision

Juliet Parker

Director of Operations, Action Against Hunger (ACF)

Normann Steinmaier

Deputy Head & Coordinator Humanitarian Assistance, Welthungerhilfe


There are five sub-committees to the Board with delegated decision-making authorities.



Chair: Paul Astruc (Independent)

Advises the Board and Start team on financial operations, audit and risk management. The responsibilities of the Committee include having oversight on all financial matters, including the annual accounts, budgeting and financial management, as well as identifying and understanding all financial and operational risks to the Start Network. 

Plan International and three independents



Chair: Degan Ali (Adeso)

Oversees the selection and onboarding of new members, the membership policy and annual membership contributions. Responsibilities include receiving applications to membership and making recommendations the Board of Trustees, as well as overseeing the due diligence process. 

CAFOD, World Vision UK, Adeso, Concern, and three independents



Chair: Shaima Al-Zarooni (Independent)

Responsible for appointing individuals to the Board and ensuring a good balance of skills are held by the Trustees. Responsibilities include recommending the skills and experience that should be sought in the nomination and election of Trustees, as well as leading the election process when there are vacancies that need to be filled. 

Trocaire and two independents



Chair: Christof Gabriel Maetze (Independent)

Advises on the development and implementation of the Start Network's People Strategy, as well as other policies and procedures relating to human resources such as personnel and performance management, and staff remuneration.

CADENA and three independents



Chair: John Brooker (Solidarities International)

Oversees the management, operation and strategy of the Start Fund. Strategically, the Committee provides advice and input to the Board, particularly around the principles and the processes for decision-making. The Committee has delegated authority from the Board and, through decision-making subsets called ‘rotas’, makes decisions on funding allocations, stewards the progression of the project selection procedures, and participates in associated learning and evaluation peer reviews. 

The Start Fund committee is made up of all Start Network members.



Start Fund Council 

The Start Fund Council brings together all Start Fund donors to review their investment in the Fund. The Council has have direct governance oversight over the risk management of the Start Fund, the policy of which the Council reviews and endorses on an annual basis.


Read more about Start Network's governance



Over the next three years, Start Network will work across four complementary and mutually reinforcing areas of work aimed at catalysing system change and driving more effective humanitarian action to assist and protect communities in need.

Our Strategy 2020-22


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