Members of Staff
Integro Association - Bulgaria
Bagryan Maksimov, Financial and Administrative Manager. He holds a Bachelor and Master degree on Electrical engineering from “Angel Kanchev” University in Ruse, Bulgaria. He is part of Integro's team since 2006 as an Office Manager and since 2008 as a Financial and administrative Manager. He has extensive experience in management and coordination of projects.
Vergil Ibryam, Project Coordinator. He is a student of Biotechnologies at "Angel Kanchev" University in Ruse, Bulgaria. He is a part of team of Integro Association Bulgaria since 2010 as a program coordinator in different educational and youth projects. He has an extensive experience in coordination of youth projects in Bulgaria.
Life Together - Czech Republic
Mgr. Simona Reichlová, Fundraiser, Project Manager and Coordinator of 3 centers for children and youths (Hrušov, Zárubek, Liščina) in Ostrava. Simona holds a Bachelor and Master degree from the Univerisities of Opava and Ostrava, Czech Republic. She has worked in Life together since 2009, has an experience with writing and management various national and international projects, mostly focused on integration of Roma children into society with the help of many regular educational, art, sport, preventional activities and events (youth exange stays abroad etc.). Projects are financed by Ministry of work and social affairs, EU funds, Ministry of culture, Ministry of youth, education and sport, Visegrad fund, grants from North-Moravian regional authority, Municipality of Ostrava etc.). She has also been involved in implementation of the projects focused on ongoing school segregation of Roma children, DH court decision anniversary event.
Renata Gažiová, Leader of the community centre for children and youth Hrušov, community field worker. Renata has worked in Life together since it was established in 1998, after disastrous floods in Ostrava Hrušov, where she herself lived and acted as a volunteer when helping local people to improve their living conditions. Nowadays Renata is a leader of The centre for children and youths Hrušov, where there is a mixed team of employees consisting of both Roma and non-Roma people. There are about 60 children attending the centre, Renata works daily with both children and their parents, help them with tutoring, make contact with schools, solve problems. She has gained respect in the community and a lot of people turn to her with their problems. She has also been involved in implementation of the projects focused on ongoing school segregation of Roma children, DH court decision anniversary event.
Jolana Šmarhovyčová, Leader of the community centre for children and youth Zárubek, Roma rights and empowerment activist. Jolana has worked in Life together for many years. She previously worked in social and legal counselling department as a field social assistant in Liščina. Nowadays Jolana is a leader of The centre for children and youths Zárubek, excluded area in Silesian part of Ostrava with no facilities for children, youths, adults, inhabited mostly by Roma people. There are about 50 children attending the centre, Jolana works daily with both children and their parents, help them with tutoring, make contact with schools, solve problems. She has gained respect in the community and a lot of people turn to her with their problems. She has also been involved in implementation of the projects focused on ongoing school segregation of Roma children, DH court decision anniversary event. In her free time she acts as activits and Roma rights worker, supports an idea of Roma empowerment.
ANTIGONE - Greece
Athanasios Theodoridis, Project Manager. He is a Lawyer of Athens since 1994, expert on human rights issues, with a master degree on the administrative and constitutional law (Athens University), and he is candidate for Phd on constitutional law (with a scientific research at Harvard University, Massachusets, USA and at Sorbonnne Universtiy, Paris). During 1997 and 1998 he used to be Legal Counselor of the Greek Helsinki Monitor and Minority Rights Group-GR ( human rights NGOs). During 2002 and 2003 he worked as Legal Counselor and Project Manager for “ANTIGONE – Information and Documentation Centre on Racism”.
Since 2003 and up to now he is working as Executive Director of “ANTIGONE”. He is specialised in the field of non discrimination and in the framework of his duties he delivered Seminars for members of migrants commuities and civil society organisations concerning the implementation of the anti-racist Directives 2000/43/EC and 2000/78/EC and the content of the Greek legislation on the rights of victims of trafficking.
Since 2003 up to now he is a member of the National Commission for Human Rights of the Hellenic Republic (NCHR). He is currently serving his third term and since 2006 he is Deputy Head of the Sub-Commission for Social, Economic and Cultural Rights of the NCHR.
During the years 2003 – 2006 he had the general responsibility of the EUMC Project RAXEN on behalf of ANTIGONE which constituted the Greek National Focal Point of the European Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia (EUMC) for two consecutive terms (2001-2006). He used to be Head of Data Collection in the fields of employment, legislation, education, housing and racist violence. In 2002 he was the co-writer of the Analytical Report on Legislation regarding Racism, Antisemitism and Xenophobia in Greece.
During 2008 and 2009 he co-administrated in Greece, on behalf of “ANTIGONE”, the FRALEX project (which regularly provides the EU Fundamental Rights Agency with legal studies and reports) in cooperation with the Centre for European Constitutional Law as a main partner (consortium of the two above organisations). Mr Theodoridis was the Head of Data Collection within the FRALEX project.
In January 2010 he has been selected as member of the European Network of Legal Experts in the Non-Discrimination Field. Moreover, in January 2010 he has been appointed as Anti- Discrimination Correspondent for Greece for the Migrant Integration Policy Index (MIPEX).
Kyriaki Karadiamanti, Technical. She holds a Bachelors Degree of Political Sciences, from the School of Political Sciences, of the Faculty of Law, Economic, and Political Sciences of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. She is a postgraduate of the masters programme “MA in Applied Human Rights”, of the Centre for Applied Human Rights, of the University of York, in York, UK. She has an excellent knowledge of English and a good command of French. Her points of interest include sociology, migration, and racism. She participated in many national and international conferences, seminars and workshops on various topics (education, asylum, racism, etc). In the last year she has been active in working in the field of human rights.
European Roma Rights Centre - Hungary
Dezideriu Gergely, Executive Director. He is a human rights lawyer and a member of the Bucharest Bar. He joined the ERRC from the National Council for Combating Discrimination, the Romanian equality state body, where he served for six years as a Member of the Steering Board and Secretary of State. He began his career in private law practice, before joining Romani CRISS, the Roma Center for Social Intervention and Studies. He was head of the Human Rights Department there for four years. He has lectured widely on anti-discrimination law in Romania, providing training sessions for judges, prosecutors, police officers, activists and students. He represented Romania at the Council of Europe Committee of Experts on Roma and Travellers and was twice elected Chair of the Committee. He also represented Romania at the European Commission Governmental Experts Group on Non-Discrimination during 2008-2011. He holds a master degree on European and Romanian Constitutional law and a bachelor’s degree in science of law from Babes Bolyai University Law School. He was a human rights fellow at Columbia University School of Law in New York, and graduated from the George Marshall College of International and Security Studies in Germany and the Romanian Diplomatic Institute.
Judit Geller, Lawyer. She holds a BA degree in Public Administration from the Corvinus University of Budapest and a Master of Law from the Eotvos Lorand University, also in Budapest. She studied international law at the Law Faculty of University of Leuven, Belgium and completed a traineeship at the European Court of Human Rights. She has worked since 2008 as part of the legal team of the European Roma Rights Centre, which has played a key role in securing judgments from the European Court of Human Rights and other bodies about the right of Roma children to equal access to education. She passed the bar exam in Hungary in April 2012. As a lawyer she has been involved in legal research and several cases before both the domestic courts and the European Court of Human Rights, including on access to education. In particular, she worked on behalf of the ERRC in representing the applicants in Horváth and Kiss v Hungary, in which the European Court found that Hungary had violated the European Convention on Human Rights by inappropriately placing the applicants – and many other Romani children – in special education classes. Currently, she is the coordinator for the DARE-Net project activities in Hungary and Croatia.
Chance for Children Founadtion is the partner organization subcontracted for the implementation of the project in Hungary. CFCF has been combating for the educational equality of disadvantaged but mainly Roma students in Hungary with community actions and legal tools in the past 10 years. CFCF is practising strategic litigation and is enforcing actio popularis. CFCF is bringing lawsuits against segregated schools and school-maintainers for ensuring integrated and quality education to those children who are taught in a segregated environment. Beside the actio popularis cases CFCF also provides support in individual cases for segregated students and families who live in deep-poverty and cannot reach- due to their low ability of law enforcement- free legal assistance. In addition CFCF is regularly present at different regions of the country, hence it passes donation of clothes, toys and other personal articles to the inhabitants of Roma settlements and/or slums. CFCF’s community work aims to strengthen local communities, to inform Roma parents about their own and their children’s rights and to help them in accessing quality education.
Romani CRISS - Romania
Marian Mandache, Project Coordinator. Marian was born in an Ursari Roma family in Romania. He became a lawyer in the Bucharest Bar (2005) and got his LL.M. from Columbia University (2010) when he also served as a teacher assistant for Prof. Jack Greenberg. Marian works on Roma rights since 1999 and he is currently the Executive Director of Romani CRISS. He acquired valuable field experience by conducting numerous fact-finding missions on various human rights violations. He drafted complaints to the ECtHR. He litigated landmark cases on hate-speech (against the President of Romania, the Prime-Minister, the Minister of Foreign Affairs), on school segregation (School 19 Craiova) or law enforcement misconduct. Marian was part of expert groups drafting law proposals (e.g. amendments to the Romanian anti-discrimination legislation) and developing international standards (CoE, EC, OSCE). Marian delivered training for judges, police officers and civic activists. He authored six books on the human rights situation of Roma.
Simona Barbu, Project Assistant. Simona is an activist for human rights, activating in one of the oldest Roma NGO from Romania, for 5 years now. During this period she has worked within Romani CRISS organization with the purpose to promote human rights of the Roma minority and improve the access of the Roma in Romania to health services and educational institutions. In the past two years she has worked on projects meant to enlarge and improve the access to education of the Roma children and on projects concerning the access to health of the Roma. Her work is combining advocating and promoting human rights and equal access for the Roma communities in all areas of life, project management and also work in the community, organizing and participating at meetings with the members of the Roma community. Graduate of the Faculty of Sociology and Social assistance, University of Bucharest in Romania, Simona has a bachelor degree in sociology. Currently she is a master student in the 2nd year within the University of Bucharest, UNESCO Department in Intercultural and Inter-religious exchange, specialization Intercultural management.
Irina Croitoru, Project Assistant. Irina is a jurist in the Human Rights Department of Romani CRISS. She holds a Bachelor of Laws and a Bachelor of Music from the Moldova State University in Chisinau and a LLM (International Law and European Union Law) from “Nicolae Titulescu” University in Bucharest. Since 2007, Irina has participated in the framework of various national and international conferences and youth exchanges such as the European Youth Congress “IT'S YOUR TURN!” – Mürzzuschlag, Austria and also was the member of the Youth Parliament, a project sustained by the Parliament of the Republic of Moldova. Before joining Romani CRISS, Irina volunteered for NGO’s in the field of human rights. In 2010-2012, Irina was a legal consultant and the Head of the Department of Human Rights Cases at the “Legal Clinic of the Moldova State University” where she provided legal assistance for socially disadvantaged persons.