Vanda Mulenda is a psychologist at Open Briefing. Vanda specialises in trauma and the treatment of PTSD, depression, and anxiety. He has supported the mental health of refugees and the victims of armed groups for the last 10 years, including with Action contre la Faim and Save the Children International, and has provided staff psychosocial support at UNOCI and an addiction recovery clinic. He has lived and worked in Liberia, Sierra Leone, Chad, Cote d’Ivoire, DR Congo, Niger, Cameroon, South Africa, and the Netherlands. Vanda is a member of the Association of Psychologists in DR Congo and of the Health Professional Council of South Africa and holds a master’s degree in clinical psychology from the University of Pretoria.
Group: Wellbeing and resilience
Mohamed Lamaa is a psychologist at Open Briefing. Mohamed provides counselling and emergency mental health response for media and humanitarian organisations working in conflict-affected and high-risk areas. Alongside his work with Open Briefing, he has a private practice where he serves clients with complex trauma and PTSD as well as survivors of gender-based violence in the Middle East and East Africa. Mohamed worked for more than a decade with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, providing mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) to asylum seekers and refugees in Lebanon. He holds a degree in clinical psychology and a master’s in adjustment and clinical psychology. He is a member of the European Association of Psychotherapy and the Lebanese Psychology Association. Mohamed speaks English and Arabic.
Dr Veronica Lugris is a psychologist at Open Briefing. Veronica provides assessments, psychotherapy, organisational consultation, and professional development in English, Spanish, and Portuguese. Much of her 20-year career has centred around acute stress and chronic trauma, and their impact on interpersonal relationships and work satisfaction. She has published works on trauma, trafficking, homophobia, and immigration. Her private clients are culturally diverse, and many of them work in the international humanitarian sector, often in conflict-affected and high-risk areas. Veronica holds a PhD in Counseling Psychology and a post-graduate Certificate in Organisational Development and Consultation. She is a member of the New York State Psychological Association and an adjunct faculty at the City University of New York.
Camille Gallie is the director of wellbeing and resilience at Open Briefing. Camille is an executive coach, trainer and NLP practitioner. Based in Senegal, she has been supporting the wellbeing of regional and field office staff in West Africa for the last two years. Prior to that, she spent seven years in the humanitarian sector with Save the Children UK, GOAL, and World Vision, including four years in advocacy and programme management roles in Haiti. Camille is a certified executive and life coach and an accredited Workplace Resilience and Wellbeing (Wraw) practitioner and holds a degree in history and a master’s degree in European studies.
Liz Pycroft is a counsellor and trainer at Open Briefing. Over the last 20 years, Liz has lived and worked in the United Kingdom, South Africa, Thailand, DR Congo and Sudan and is currently based in Abuja, Nigeria. She specialises in supporting humanitarians, development professionals, diplomatic staff and their families. As a trainer, Liz provides wellbeing training, facilitation and organisational support across a variety of sectors. She was previously a visiting lecturer in the School of Psychology at the Ahfad University for Women in Omdurman, Sudan. Liz has a master’s degree in counselling and psychotherapy and is registered and accredited by the British Association for Counsellors and Psychotherapists (BACP).
Hannaa El-Sayed is a counsellor and psychologist at Open Briefing. Hannaa provides counselling in English, German and Arabic. She specialises in providing culturally-sensitive therapy to diverse ethnic groups, including refugees and asylum seekers, and those who present with complex trauma, depression and PTSD. Hannaa has worked in crisis settings and refugee camps in Jordan, Greece, Kenya and the United Kingdom. She has worked with the Red Cross, Room to Heal and Refugee Action and in community day centres and private practice. She holds a degree in psychology and a master’s in transcultural mental health, with additional training in trauma-focused therapy and mindfulness. Hannaa is a member of the British Association for Counsellors and Psychotherapists (BACP).
Felicity Runchman is a counsellor at Open Briefing. Felicity has over a decade’s experience in the social care and not-for-profit sectors, and has specialised in the humanitarian sector since 2015, including two years at InterHealth Worldwide. Widely travelled, she has a professional interest in the particular experiences of stress, burnout and trauma in individuals in high-risk contexts and remote settings. In addition to her role at Open Briefing, Felicity has a small private practice in London and is an assessment worker for a local bereavement support service. Felicity holds a master’s degree in counselling and psychotherapy and is accredited by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP).
Dr Cynthia Grguric is a psychologist and coach at Open Briefing. Cynthia has over 20 years professional experience in clinical practice, assessment, and supervision; humanitarian staff care and employee relations; cross cultural and diversity issues; psychosocial education; and critical incident response and crisis management. Alongside her private practice in New York, Cynthia also works as a psychotherapist with Doctors of the World/HealthRight International. She is a member of the UN Development Programme gender equality and empowerment expert roster and the International Criminal Court war crimes investigation roster. She previously served as the interim director of psychological health for the New York National Guard. Cynthia holds a PhD in international psychology and a master’s in counselling psychology. She is a member of the American Psychological Association of International Psychology and the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation. Cynthia is also a Board Certified Coach.