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I am a Humanitarian Communications expert specialising in Community Engagement and Accountability to deliver better impact in emergencies. This includes erecting a community radio station in a frontline zone to engage with people affected by the South Sudan conflict, and designing and scaling up innovative community-owned audio information projects in displacement camps. I am passionate about humanising the aid response, and ensuring communities have voices heard and responded to by humanitarian actors.

I’m skilled in strategy development for Social Behaviour Change Communications, and designing and managing Communications With Communities (CWC) programs that support UN Clusters, partner agencies and NGOs to have better accountability with people. I am experienced in field based Monitoring & Evaluations at global, regional, country, and local level largely with Oxfam GB. I have also investigated, researched, and reported for The BBC, The Guardian and Al Jazeera.  I hold a Masters in International Political Economy (Warwick University, UK).

CWC, community, communications, humanitarian, Upper Nile, South Sudan

I previously worked as Director, Humanitarian for Internews (US), South Sudan, where I developed, grew and led humanitarian operations following the conflict: including design, rollout and scale-up of a unique and original community led audio Humanitarian Information Service for 4 camps serving 70,000 people –  which I named Boda Boda Talk Talk.

I drove Communications With Communities approach supporting agencies to use multiple communications channels to deliver better engagement, mobilization and accountability to people. I led the design and development of Community Centered CWC tools and training modules, and delivered training and advocacy on CWC, including strategic technical advice to agencies in South Sudan.

I recently worked for the International Federation of the Red Cross (IFRC) on Lesvos, Greece as a Senior Consultant where I designed and managed The Walkie Talkie Information Service. WTIS was an audio program played in transit sites to deliver critical information to refugees developed in collaboration with a local radio station.

Man organising Fishing Nets

My private sector experience is an enterprising one. I set up a family business with my sister (www.holycowfc.com and http://www.kiranscookingclub.wordpress.com) which markets a range of Indian curries and sauces. These are now sold nationally through various foodservice chains.

I hold a Masters in International Political Economy (Warwick University, UK) and a bachelors in Economics and Politics (Oxford Brookes). I have Dual Citizenship for India and the UK.

If you have a story you would like me to follow or would like me to work on your projects as a consultant – please feel free to write to me  –  meena.communicates [at] gmail. com

Hung out to dry

All photos on this site © Meena Bhandari 2013

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