Sarah is a passionate gender equality advisor and advocate with 10 years’ experience specializing in women’s rights, gender policy, and Women, Peace and Security and Gender Based Violence (GBV) in international development and humanitarian settings. Following a Masters thesis on women’s peacebuilding in Nepal (2007), Sarah has worked principally in South Asia (Nepal, Pakistan, Afghanistan, India). She has lived and worked in the region for three years, including in Nepal (2002 – 2007) and Pakistan (2010 – 2012). Sarah’s experiences in India included working in Hazaribagh (Jharkhand) in 2003 supporting orphaned children living with a disability. She also travelled extensively in India independently to glimpse some of the country’s diversity. From 2008-11, Sarah worked for the Australian Aid Program in the Gender Policy Section managing the government’s portfolios on Women, Peace and Security and Gender Based Violence in humanitarian settings, and in Pakistan overseeing the humanitarian response to the 2010 floods. Moving from government, Sarah managed Oxfam Australia’s engagement in Afghanistan and Pakistan – focused on gender and elections and Gender Based Violence. In 2014, Sarah founded The Gender Agency, a consultancy providing specialist technical expertise and facilitating collaborative solutions to advance gender equality for government, UN agencies and civil society organisations. Sarah is also a Gender, Peace and Security Specialist at the Athena Consortium – primarily supporting women’s roles and gender perspectives in peace processes. In addition, Sarah is a Gender Advisor on the Australian Civilian Corps. She recently undertook a deployment to Timor-Leste providing advice on ways to improve gender sensitive humanitarian responses. She is also engaged on the government’s Post Disaster Recovery Team in 2014-15 in the event of a natural disaster.
Sarah holds a Master of Development Studies (Gender and Peacebuilding), a Graduate Diploma in Arts (Development), a Bachelor of Commerce (Economics) and a Diploma of Modern Languages (Chinese) from the University of Melbourne.