Staff & Volunteers
Louise King – Director
Louise rejoined CRAE in March 2015 (having been Senior Policy Officer between 2002 and 2006). Prior to this Louise worked at Save the Children. Most recently, she led on child rights governance policy and advocacy in the UK. She has also been Vice President of Euronet - the European Children’s Network, and Chair of the Separated Children in Europe Programme.
After graduating in philosophy and theology from the University of Nottingham, Louise volunteered for the British Youth Council before taking up the position of Policy Officer where she led on campaigns to lower the voting age to 16 and for the establishment of a Children's Commissioner for England. She then joined CRAE as Senior Policy Officer before joining Save the Children in 2006, where she first worked on policy issues relating to child victims of trafficking and children seeking asylum.
Louise has also facilitated numerous participatory workshops for children to learn about their rights and supported children to advocate for the realisation of their rights in numerous policy areas, including protection from violence, immigration and reform of the Children’s Commissioner for England. She has also mentored teenagers at risk of getting in trouble with the law.
Louise lives in Hove with her partner and has two young sons aged seven and four
Anna Edmundson - Senior Policy and Public Affairs Advisor
Anna became one of CRAE's Senior Policy and Public Affairs Advisor in April 2016 (having been Policy and Programmes Manager between 2014 and 2015). She leads our work on children and policing, criminal justice and children in custody. Before joining CRAE she worked as a barrister, then at INQUEST where she led their research, policy and parliamentary work and managed sucessful campaigns on inquest reforms and reducing children's and young people's deaths in custody.
Anna graduated in Social and Political Sciences from Cambridge University, has a Masters in Human Rights Law from Essex university and co-authored four editions of Blackstones Guide to the Human Rights Act (Oxford University Press). She has worked for leading human rights organisations including Liberty and the British Institute of Human Rights (where she was Deputy Director) developing an expertise in campaigns and communications. More recently, as an Advisor to Equally Ours, she helped devise and launch the "Rights for Life" campaign, sharing real stories of how human rights are for all of us, at all stages in our life. Anna was also on the steering group of Act for the Act, a crowd-funded poster campaign to safeguard the Human Rights Act.
She is passionate about ensuring policy makers hear children's voices and, as a volunteer, has supported children (including her own) to campaign on issues including outdoor play and education.
Natalie Williams - Senior Policy and Public Affairs Advisor
Natalie joined CRAE in May 2016 as one of our Senior Policy and Public Affairs Advisors. She leads on our work to skill up the voluntary sector to effectively use children's rights frameworks in their advocacy work and on ensuring that the systems and structures are in place to protect children's rights. Prior to joining CRAE, Natalie spent four years at The Children’s Society working and lobbying on a number of policy issues relating to protecting and improving the rights of vulnerable children such as victims of sexual exploitation, children who go missing or run away, children in poverty or children in care. Most recently, as Policy Manager (Poverty and Inequality) she specialised in refugee, asylum seeking and trafficked children’s policy and co-chaired the Refugee Children’s Consortium (RCC) where she led a lobbying coalition to achieve a number of changes to the Modern Slavery Act 2015.
Before this Natalie was Policy Manager at the Community Development Foundation (CDF) and worked at the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) from 2006 as a Third Sector Foresight Officer which involved helping build the capacity of charities to understand external trends and build this into their strategic planning. She holds a BA in English and American Literature and French from the University of Kent.
Natalie also spent several years volunteering for a Congolese immigration advice charity in Croydon.
Maria Stephens – Participation Project Manager
Maria joined CRAE in January 2015 as Participation Project Manager. In this role she works with children and young people to support them to have their views and experiences heard by decision makers. Her work has most recently focussed on supporting children and young people to report on children’s rights in England to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child.
Before joining CRAE Maria was Head of Youth and Community work at Toynbee Hall where she was responsible for projects working to support marginalised children and families in Tower Hamlets and the City of London. Maria has extensive experience working directly with children and young people and previously developed informal education projects, participatory workshops, youth-led research and support services. She is also a qualified secondary school teacher and has worked one to one with children and young people who have been removed from education. As a volunteer Maria has supported young refugees and families for the Refugee Council and Metropolitan Housing Trust; worked with the activism team at Amnesty International; and been a trustee for IARS and Journey’s (a child bereavement counselling service). She holds a BA in International Relations from the University of Sussex and an MSC in Social Policy from the LSE.
Sue Marris – Head of Operations CRAE/JFKL
Sue started at CRAE in 2006 and is responsible for the organisation's finances, office administration and for personnel matters. Her previous jobs include working as an actuarial officer at the Government Actuary's Department and as the statistician at the Arts Council of Great Britain before she moved to work in the charity sector. She then worked as centre manager of a community centre, as tenant liaison officer for a housing association and then as office manager at a drop-in centre for families of children with disabilities. She has a degree in Economics with Econometrics and an MA in Arts Administration.
Volunteer - Catherine Franks
Catherine graduated in law from the University of Aberystwyth and holds an LLM in Public Law and Human Rights from University College London. As an undergraduate student, Catherine established a charity helping disadvantaged children in different parts of the world and she is currently its Chair of Trustees. Catherine has done legal research for a number of human rights organisations in London and Cape Town. Her work has included carrying out research and developing advocacy documents on the child's right to education, the role and need for Independent Human Rights Institutions for Children, and the protection of children against violence and corporal punishment. She has assisted with facilitating participatory workshops for children and teenagers in Cape Town on these topics. She also works on practical projects relating to the inclusion of Roma children in London and in Brasov, Romania. Catherine feels that the work of CRAE is very important in advancing the rights of children in England and is glad to be able to contribute to the work that CRAE does.
All employment and voluntary opportunities will be advertised in Work for Us.