Expertise: Emergency Response, Health, Humanitarian Issues, Program Management, Region: Africa, Region: Sudan, Women and Girls
As country director, Ms. Purdin leads the IRC’s programs serving 450,000 people in a region recovering from decades of civil war that destroyed the infrastructure and devastated basic services. The IRC operates in five of Southern Sudan’s 10 states, with programs addressing health and protection needs. Current priorities for the IRC in Southern Sudan include maintaining high-quality programs while responding to the potential for insecurity and population movements in the wake of the January 2011 referendum on self-determination. The IRC is poised to scale up program activities across sectors and geographic areas. Ms. Purdin was recently elected by her peers to be a member of the Steering Committee of the Southern Sudan NGO Forum.
Ms. Purdin’s career has focused in the international arena since 1986. She is recognized as an expert in the provision of humanitarian assistance in general and in reproductive health in particular. Ms. Purdin led the development of phase one of the Sphere Project, which fostered consensus among international aid organizations and established minimum standards for humanitarian assistance in emergencies.
In 1999 she received the Global Health Council award for “Best Practice in the Field of Global Health” for her work providing field-based, on-site technical assistance to reproductive health projects in conflict settings.
Ms. Purdin holds an adjunct faculty position in Columbia University’s Program on Forced Migration and Health, where she has taught courses on program planning, reproductive health and HIV in situations of forced migration.
In her more than 20 years of international work, Ms. Purdin has carried out short and long-term assignments in Afghanistan, Albania, Angola, Azerbaijan, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kosovo, Lebanon, Liberia, Macedonia, Malawi, Morocco, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Rwanda, South Africa, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sudan, Tanzania, Thailand, Turkmenistan, Uganda and Zambia.
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