We are able to deliver our projects due to the commitment and enthusiasm of our trustees, staff and volunteers.
Our core team of five are based in our head office at the UCL Ear Institute in Kings Cross in London and we have Volunteer Audiologists and Teachers of the Deaf in our project countries in Africa.
Kavita Prasad – CEO
Kavita became Sound Seekers’ CEO in June 2018. She has been spearheading the Programmes at Sound Seekers since she joined in January 2017 as Head of Programmes, in which time our programmes work has gone from strength to strength. She now leads Sound Seekers as CEO into the next phase of our growth and development. Kavita has over 10 years’ experience in programme management and development as well as extensive technical expertise on disability inclusion, having previously worked with disability-focused organisations, including Handicap International (now Humanity and Inclusion) and Leonard Cheshire Disability. Prior to joining Sound Seekers, Kavita was seconded by Handicap International to The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) to support the mainstreaming of disability in UNRWA programmes and services. She has a Masters’ degree in Public Health from the University of Leeds and a Bachelors’ degree in Physiotherapy and has lived and worked in South Asia and the Middle East
Tanya D’souza – Fundraising and Communications Manager
Tanya is our Fundraising and Communications Manager. She has worked in the charity sector for over seven years and has been a keen volunteer for many charities for ten years. Tanya began her career in fundraising working for Money Tree Fundraising, supporting the Director across different fundraising areas for a variety of charities. Tanya has worked for international NGO, Excellent Development as Trusts & Rotary Fundraising Manager to support dryland communities in Africa and India to increase their access to clean water. Before working as a fundraiser, Tanya was a Diagnostic Radiographer and some of the charities she has volunteered for include BHF, Middlesex Association of the Blind, Parkinson’s UK, OPEN Ealing and Coppafeel. Tanya is a keen traveller and photographer and her passion for international development and background in healthcare, made Sound Seekers the perfect charity for her to join in January 2017.
Nicole D’Angelo – Finance and Office Manager
Nicole joined Sound Seekers as our Finance and Office Manager in January 2018. She has 25 years’ experience in administration, finance and HR and has worked in the charity sector for over three years. Prior to Sound Seekers, she worked for City Gateway, supporting the transformation of the lives of young people and women in our communities who are most impacted by social and economic inequality and exclusion. Originally from Germany, Nicole has been a resident in London for most of her adult life. As a keen traveller with an interest in charitable work, Sound Seekers was the perfect charity for her to join in 2018.
Meera Rajasooriar – Programme Manager
Meera joined the Sound Seekers team in July 2018 as Programme Manager. Her previous experience includes working for Crown Agents, an international development consultancy born out of the UK government, where her work spanned strategy, business development and communications. Before this, she worked within the Stabilisation Unit, based in the Foreign Commonwealth Office, deploying civilian experts to humanitarian crises to tackle instability overseas. She has always had a passion for international development work, so she’s excited to work with the team at Sound Seekers and see the impact of the work of our programmes on the ground, helping people with hearing loss. Her feet are constantly moving as she loves dancing and walking, and her challenge for 2018 is to read a book a week – wish her luck!
Bunmi Akinwale – Fundraising and Communications Officer
Bunmi became part of Sound Seekers as Fundraising and Communications Officer in September 2018. Her previous experiences are working in events and coordination for about 2 years. Her former work involved working for Evolve Housing + Support which is an organisation that supports young homeless people and accommodate them. Working for a charity has made her become more passionate of helping people and believe Sound Seekers are more than capable to perform this. She enjoys travelling, planning and executing events and listening to music. She looks forward to working with the team to help raise money for our on-going projects.
Bhavisha Parmar – Special Advisor (Audiology)
Bhavisha Parmar graduated from University College London in 2012 with a BSc in Audiology and has since worked extensively with both the adult and paediatric population in both private and NHS sectors. Her most recent role was Senior Paediatric Audiologist with Hounslow and Richmond Community NHS trust where she lead hearing assessments of children and young people of all ages, fitted hearing aids and networked with a vast multidisciplinary team to ensure holistic and comprehensive care of children with hearing impairment as well as their families. She has recently completed her MSc in Advanced Audiology and has previously volunteered in India providing health camps with Raleigh International, fundraised for various charities by running marathons and organised events to raise awareness of hearing impairment. Throughout her experiences she has been inspired to link her passion of audiology and development work together and this lead her to volunteer with Sound Seekers for one year in Zambia from January until December 2017, where she set up the Children’s Hearing Clinic at University Teaching Hospital in Lusaka (read her blog here) and since January 2018 Bhavisha has continued to volunteer for Sound Seekers as a Special Advisor on audiology.
Naomi Elliott – Volunteer Audiologist in Zambia
Naomi is our Volunteer Paediatric Audiologist based in Zambia since February 2018. Naomi graduated from University College London in 2015 with an MSc in Audiological Science and has since developed a strong passion for working in paediatric audiology. She has worked as a Senior Paediatric Audiologist and School Screening Manager for Hounslow and Richmond Community Trust where she led diagnostic appointments and hearing aid fittings for children and young people of all ages, ensuring the smooth running of the hearing screening of reception age children within school. Naomi has also worked to improve the ability of the service in testing children with complex needs. Naomi has always loved volunteering and has spent time volunteering for St John’s Ambulance, St Peters Hospice and Orphanages in Sri Lanka. Naomi enjoys challenges such as running half marathons and a duathlon.
Caroline Clarke – Volunteer Advisory Teacher of the Deaf in Malawi
Caroline is our Volunteer Advisory Teacher for the Deaf based in Blantyre Malawi for six months from March 2018. Caroline graduated from the University of Hertfordshire with a Bachelor of Education degree and worked as a mainstream class teacher. Caroline taught in a mainstream school in the UK for three years and then at the British School in Tokyo, Japan for four years. After returning to the UK she went on to achieve her qualification as a Teacher of the Deaf (ToD). Caroline worked as a ToD at Blanche Nevile School for the Deaf for seven years where she gained her Level 3 qualification in British Sign Language. Caroline then went on to achieve an MA in Education, which researched the inclusion of deaf pupils in a mainstream classroom as its main focus. Caroline later became an Advisory Teacher for the Deaf with the London Boroughs of Haringey and Enfield. Her most recent role involved working with children with hearing loss from 0-19yrs and their families. Her role as an Advisory Teacher for the Deaf since 2007; has fuelled her passion for developing and delivering training programs for mainstream class teachers. Caroline has delivered training on the Special Educational Needs course for Teaching and Learning Support Assistants. Caroline enjoys travelling, salsa dancing and more recently learning to play the alto saxophone.
Philip Shaw – Chair
After 30 years in the international publishing industry Philip now divides his time between being the Chair of Sound Seekers, advising on mergers and acquisitions through Bertoli Mitchell LLP, lecturing at the Oxford International Centre for Publishing Studies, and working with several other not-for-profit organisations.Philip has a first class degree from Cambridge University and a Masters in Business Administration from Cranfield University. For relaxation he grows food for the family on a small patch of land in Oxfordshire and keeps two dogs.
Steven Reekie – Treasurer
Steven joined Sound Seekers as a Trustee in December 2016. He works as Interim Head of Financial Accounting for NHS Property Services, a business wholly owned by the Department of Health, which manages, maintains and improves the NHS properties and facilities within its portfolio and provides strategic estates planning for NHS buildings and land. Prior to this he spent 19 years with the construction and facilities management group, Carillion plc, in various finance roles; his final four years spent as Finance Director of its design consultancy business.
Dr Denise Goldman BSc (Hons) PhD
Denise is the Manager of Strategic Partnering & Business Development at the UCL Ear Institute and has been working in the field of hearing loss for 5 years. Prior to this role, Denise worked at RNID/Action on Hearing Loss, the largest NFP worldwide for hearing loss and tinnitus, as the Translational Research Manager. Within both roles Denise has pursued her goal to bring together key stakeholders, including academics, clinicians, patients, funders and industry, to catalyse the development of treatments and cures for hearing loss and tinnitus. Denise holds a PhD in developmental and stem cell biology, and endocrinology from Monash University, Australia/Monash Institute of Medical Research (MIMR). Denise undertook postdoctoral research at MIMR in cell reprogramming and at the National Institute for Medical Research as an MRC Career Development Fellow researching genetic specificity in neural stem cells.
David Greenberg BSc, PhD
David works as a Research Associate at the UCL Ear Institute as part of the Advancing Binaural Cochlear Implant Technology (ABCIT) programme. His past includes working as an NHS Clinical Audiologist and as a Research Audiologist within medical device and pharmaceutical clinical trials, teaching at the UCL School of Audiology and UCL Medical School, as well as writing journal articles in the fields of cochlear implants, tinnitus, neurophysiology and psychophysics. He has been the Chairman of the Young Professionals arm of a charity in the field of emergency medicine and founded a Ltd company developing a communication platform for the deaf and the elderly. When he is not working, he is commonly found playing competitive Ultimate Frisbee. He enjoys contributing to a wide variety of projects and endeavours to bring an element of create problem solving and passion to everything he does.
Malcolm has been a teacher of the deaf for more than 40 years and, after being deputy head of a school for the deaf, working as head of education support services for deaf and hard of hearing children and adults in three different authorities (Bristol & Avon, Staffordshire and Birmingham), he retired in 2007.After driving overland to Gambia in 2004 to deliver hearing aids and audiological equipment, Malcolm found that that there were no qualified teachers of the deaf in the country, and no diagnostic audiology or specialist medical services for the deaf. Malcolm approached Sound Seekers to suggest they should provide a HARK vehicle and team to provide much needed audiology support. This recommendation was accepted and, after fundraising for the vehicle and provision of training for the Team, the Gambia HARK was launched in 2007. Malcolm has continued to work consistently in support of the work of Sound Seekers and remains an active member of the Project Committee. His involvement in Gambia means he has now visited the country more than 30 times, spending more than a year there in total, helping to develop, improve and maintain services for deaf children and adults.
Dr. Priya Carling
Dr Priya Carling, AuD trained as a Speech-language therapist and audiologist in South Africa, and completed her AuD through an American university in Florida. She has over 20 years’ clinical and management experience in both the private and public sectors, primarily in the UK. Over the past 7 years, she has been Director of Education and a Senior Lecturer at UCL’s Ear Institute in London. Prior to this she was Head of service at the Bupa Cromwell Hospital in London, and Head of Audiology at East Kent NHS Foundation Trust. Her research experience includes clinical trials of interventions (device and pharmacological) for hearing loss and tinnitus, and interests include global hearing health, noise-induced hearing loss prevention, and education for improving patient outcomes through high quality service delivery. Priya is a sections editor for a clinical publication in ENT and Audiology. She now runs her own clinical practice and consultancy in Kent, delivering continuing education, consultancy and research services to the private and commercial sectors, both nationally and globally.