HELEN APPLETON joined as a Trustee in October 2017, however she has been involved with African Initiatives as a technical advisor since 2015. Helen has nearly 40 years of experience in governance and social development, with a focus on strengthening transparent and accountable governance, health and education service delivery, human rights, gender equality and supporting citizens’ engagement in democratic processes. Her expertise includes political economy and social analysis, programme design, implementation, and monitoring and evaluation of governance and civil society programmes. Helen has also conducted many annual and end-of-project reviews and evaluations, and impact assessments. Helen worked in VSO, Development research and an NGO before joining DFID. She has also worked in the EU and as a development consultant. Helen currently advises a DFID-funded research programme on preventing Violence Against Women and Girls, focusing particularly on capacity building, theories of change, research uptake and communications, advocacy and monitoring.