The AFADU Team and Board are a movement of ordinary people working together to achieve extraordinary change.
The volunteers running AFADU in Australia find the spare time to support the children at the Lirhanzo Children’s Village and the people in the surrounding community.
We have all been touched by their resilience and ability to always look to a brighter future.
The hard workers at AFADU look after your sponsorships and donations, help with fund-raisers, hold regular working bees for the “Love in a bags” program, write grant submissions to relevant authorities and keep in contact with our African team and the kids by visiting the projects regularly.
Thanks to our generous and big-hearted sponsors we can proudly report on the progress of AFADU’s social development strategies for Lirhanzo Children’s Village (LCV) and the local community of Chikombedzi.
Ian Routledge – Chairperson
Ian was born in England and left in 1974 to take up work in Hong Kong and then Tokyo moving to Australia in 1985 with his family.
He has worked as Vice President for a large container leasing company and moved back to England for three years and then to Singapore for four years now settled back in Australia.
Ian has five adult children with one grandson and the children live in USA ,London and in Sydney.
He attended Grammar school in London and then starting work with insurance companies before working for an international leasing and hotel company.
He works in a Sales and Marketing role based predominantly in Asia and Australia involving large amounts of travel. With AFADU he loves getting people to help in projects and doing things that are outside their comfort zone
I started with AFADU when it first started as an idea following a visit to Zimbabwe by Julie Routledge in 2003 with an idea that we could send a container to Lirhanzo Childrens Village with donated goods. We achieved this and have since repeated the container shipments 15 times over the years.
Whilst I have never visited Lirhanzo I have seen the work we have done and the results where we have made a difference. I have seen projects that have been put together by our volunteers that have visited and come back with plans that have been put into action.
I am very proud of what we have achieved and what we continue to do to improve our childrens lives. We have only just begun!”
Craig Gear – Deputy Chair
Craig is a health professional with extensive experience in health management including within the justice and correctional settings.
I have held a number of senior health management positions in New South Wales public health services prior to working at PricewaterhouseCoopers as a Senior Manager in their Health Advisory Practice for six years.
I have extensive experience across government and non-government health settings.
During this time I have consulted on LGBTI mental health and ageing issues – developing the National LGBTI Aged Care Training package.
Jill Farinelli – Treasurer
Jill is Managing Partner of Chartered Accounting Practice – CE Smith & Co. Proserpine (NorthQueensland).
She has a strong commitment to making a difference to her community Over the years, Jill has also assisted local sporting committees such as Whitsunday Squash Inc. and Proserpine Golf Club Inc.
Jill moved around Queensland for her primary education when her father transferred as a Stock and Station Agent.
She completed secondary schooling at St Margaret Mary’s College Townsville, culminating as School Captain, and later graduated with a tertiary degree in Economics/Commerce from James Cook University Townsville. Jill is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants andmember of the Certified Practicing Accountants.
I have been a Board Member of AFADU since November 27, 2014 after being approached by Board Member Pam Harrison to assist with the organisation’s financials in May 2014.
I support many other organisations that make a difference, but none are involved with Africa, a country which I am attracted to help.
I also like the fact that networks set up with locals allow the charity to succeed and that, other than transfer fees, all funds contributed go towards the projects, children, or the Lirhanzo Children’s Village.”
Pam Harrison – Child Sponsor Manager
Pam – Child sponsorship manager Pam is a retired nurse living in the beautiful Whitsundays with her very supportive husband Bill.
She has worked as a nurse with children, in aboriginal communities, in correctional centre facilities, in detention centres, at Central Queensland University, in aged care and as a ship’s nurse on a boat. In a previous lifetime she owned a Flying School and Charter Service and has logged close to 500 hours flying time.
I have been involved with AFADU since its inception and have been a Board Member for about 5 years. I now run the Sponsorship Program. In 2005 I visited the Lirhanzo Children’s Village and met the children for the first time.
This first trip was a life changing moment and since then I have worked hard to support Ezelle Schimper, the founder and Margret Mutero, the manager.
Working as a team they have achieved so much and I would like to think I have been able to help them under AFADU’s banner.
I returned to Zimbabwe in 2006, 2008, 2010, 2012 and in May 2015.
I am totally passionate about what we do am so proud of what AFADU has become.”
Fergal Flemming – Health Program Manager
Marg Flemming – Health Program Manager
Fergal has lived in Australia and NZ since late 1964. Marg is a Sydney girl, born and bred.
We most recently lived Darwin for 21 years and Hobart for the past year (2015).
They have been married since 1971 and have three adult children and three grandchildren (all girls).
Marg was educated at SCEGGS Darlinghurst, teacher training at the Wollongong Teachers’ College and then general nursing training at the Royal Canberra Hospital.
Fergal was educated at St Georges College, Harare, Zimbabwe, the University of Otago NZ – BA (Hons). He has a PHD in Geography from the University of NSW. Both Marg and Fergal have worked in various remote areas of Australia. They have worked to establish and support health clinics and community projects in Uganda between 2005-2010. They have had three trips to Zimbabwe, from 2012 to 2015, concentrating on projects at the Chikombedzi Hospital and Lirhanzo Children’s Village.
We joined AFADU in 2011.
We had previously being volunteering in Uganda but we had accomplished what we needed to do and wanted to try a new venture.
We had met Pammie and Jules at a fund raiser in Darwin a few years previously and thought we could make a difference with the AFADU projects, so joined.”
Andrew Zappavigna – Marketing and Growth
Andrew offers extensive experience in real world offline and online marketing strategies for growth. He has previously worked for prominent Sydney advertising agencies, the first “.com” that floated on the Australian Stock Exchange back in 2000 and chalked up over a decade at Australia Post – all with a focus on providing comprehensive marketing and growth solutions from small to medium business and large corporations.
He holds a Diploma in Commercial Business (Projects and Teams), Dip. Information Technology, Dip. Multimedia and Advertising and is ADMA Direct Marketing and HubSpot In-Bound Marketing Certified.
AFADU is unique in more ways than one:
1. 97.7% of funds raised (you don’t see those numbers for a Not-For-Profit often – have you read the news lately?) go direct to Lirhanzo Children’s Village, Zimbabwe.
Without Ezelle and our Guardian Mothers in Zim and our Friends of AFADU none would be possible
2. Your Impact: Child Wellbeing and education, Children’s Health, Vocational skills and training, Community support and development
3. 700+ highly engaged and responsive Friends of AFADU taking genunie interest and action to make a difference
Need one say more?”
Nicolle Marchant – Health and Development
For the past 16 years Nicolle has been working in health in areas ranging from Emergency Pre Hospital care, Education, Aboriginal Health and eHealth.
Her passion lies in helping vulnerable populations to have access to and receive health and other services to meet their needs.
She has worked in volunteer roles in Guyana, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu where she developed projects and worked with teams to deliver a variety of essential health, education and community services.
Undertaking academic studies in a Graduate Diploma of Public Health and a Masters of Health and International Development has provided her with a broad range of knowledge and skills. As an Australian based Project Manager for an NGO in Ruhanga, Uganda her passion was ignited to work with communities again and to help foster and improve the livelihoods of individuals, families and communities.
I was drawn to AFADU for several reasons. I am a strong advocate for sustainable projects and programs which AFADU foster through the provision of supporting projects on the ground.
AFADUs work in a variety of areas including health, community development, skills and training, with 95% of funding going to the community is fantastic.
The collaborative, transparent and supportive methodology AFADU volunteers work within drew me to want to be a part of a fantastic ‘family’ working together to strengthen individuals and communities.
AFADU works with the people not for the people for sustainable improvements in health and wellbeing.”