Crystal Whitaker

Crystal Whitaker

Role: Emergency Shelter Advisor

Profile:

I joined CARE’s Humanitarian Technical Team as Emergency Shelter Advisor in May 2018, after over eight years on deployment in the Balkans, Middle East and West Africa. I initially trained in architecture in the UK before moving to Kosovo where I was involved in urban, rural and municipal spatial planning, durable solutions, return and reintegration processes, and the protection of cultural heritage, with a number of organisations such as the Danish Refugee Council, UNDP, the Council of Europe and the International Civilian Office. I have since transitioned into early recovery, humanitarian and emergency fields, broadening technical experience as a first-line responder in the management and coordination of multi-sectorial RRM, Food Security, Shelter/NFI and WASH activities, most recently in northern and central Iraq and in northeast Nigeria. A central interest is in where and how immediate humanitarian relief activities can contribute incrementally to longer term, more durable, integrated and sustainable solutions for both displaced, hosting and affected populations, with a focus on the nature of communication and engagement between local authorities, communities and individuals to enable ownership and agency to positive effect. For this I have tried to gain practical, ‘hands on’ experience in the field to better understand the varying contexts and conditions encountered over time by communities in crisis.

One good thing I’ve read

A series of texts I read during the early days of moving from architecture to the development world helped in my understanding of active conflicts and in defining the possibilities for reconciliation or peaceful tolerance (or not) in the lengthy and indeterminate period after a conflict, particularly when there is an ethnic dimension to the violence: Violence Taking Place: The Architecture of the Kosovo Conflict by Andrew Herscher, Monument and Crime: The Destruction of Cultural Heritage in Kosovo by Andrew Herscher and András Riedlmayer, and Prishtina is Everywhere - Turbo-Urbanism: the Aftermath of a Crisis edited by Kai Vöckler.

Email: whitaker@careinternational.org


Blog posts

“Here, we have six seasons,” explained CARE’s Shelter Programme Manager, Shah Suja, as we raced along the road that connects Cox’s Bazar town to the refugee camps. Those “six seasons” bring searing heat, torrential rain, cyclones and


Humanitarian team

CARE International UK’s humanitarian team supports CARE’s humanitarian work by accessing funding, and by providing project management and technical advice and capacity to CARE’s country offices and CARE’s emergency responses. CARE has a strong focus on ensuring that all our humanitarian programming responds meaningfully to the needs and capacities of different people, whatever their gender, identity or particular circumstances. CARE’s emergency shelter team is also based at CARE International UK.

Head of Humanitarian

As Head of Humanitarian at CARE International UK, I provide leadership on humanitarian issues and sit on CARE’s Emergency Response…

Head of MENA Programmes

I joined CARE International UK in July 2017 and head up our programmes in the Middle East and North Africa…

Inclusive Governance team

Poverty and social injustice are caused and maintained by unequal power relations that result in the inequitable distribution of resources and opportunities – between women and men, between power-holders and marginalised communities, and between countries. CARE believes poor governance is a key cause of poverty and social injustice. Our Inclusive Governance team promotes inclusive and accountable governance systems so that poor and marginalised people have influence over decisions that affect their lives. We help communities get organised and get their priorities included in development planning. We work to increase women’s voice and leadership in public life. We support service users to hold service providers to account. We work with public authorities and service providers to help them become more transparent and responsive to poor and marginalised people.

Senior Governance Advisor – Asia and MENA

As a member of CARE International’s global Inclusive Governance technical team, currently based in Myanmar, I provide technical assistance to…

Inclusive Governance Business Manager

I lead on business development for CARE's Inclusive Governance team. I lead the diversification and growth of inclusive governance across…

Programmes and Policy team

The Programmes and Policy team is responsible for overseeing programme quality and multiplying the impact of our programming by encouraging governments, business and donors – based on the evidence we witness on the ground – to adopt policy reforms that support the world’s poorest people and communities. Working in partnership with our country programmes, women’s rights organisations and civil society, we put forward the views of the most marginalised to governments, including the UK government, multinational businesses and global institutions and press the case for change. In short, our goal is to change the rules of the game that keep people poor.

Head of Advocacy and Policy (Jobshare)

After 10+ years working in the development and humanitarian sector I remain passionate about putting disaster and conflict-affected people at…

Senior Policy Advisor

I joined CARE in 2005, since then I’ve been lucky enough to work with our local teams and civil society…

Strategic Partnerships team

Strategic partnerships are a key way for CARE to increase and widen our impact. Our Private Sector Engagement team partners with national and multinational companies to co-create innovative 'inclusive business' approaches that drive new opportunities for poor people as producers, workers, entrepreneurs, and consumers. We – and our partners – believe this makes good business sense: helping to generate efficiency, securing supply chains, accessing new markets and products, and improving credibility with consumers who increasingly expect companies to behave responsibly. Our Institutional Partnerships team connects the vision and commitment of our funding partners with poverty-fighting programmes throughout the world.

Partnership Officer

In my role at CARE I provide support across the team ranging from reporting for our partnership with GSK to…

Head of Private Sector Engagement

Laura joined CARE International UK in May 2018 as Head of Private Sector Engagement. She previously worked as Ethical Trading…

Women’s Economic Empowerment team

Our Women’s Economic Empowerment team leads CARE’s work globally to ensure women have greater access to and control over economic resources, assets and opportunities. We focus on four inter-related pathways to economic empowerment, based on a combination of women’s core economic roles as producers, workers, entrepreneurs and consumers: financial inclusion, women and value chains, dignified work, and entrepreneurship. We also focus on supporting the involvement of women in creating resilient markets in fragile and humanitarian contexts.

Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning Advisor

Regine is currently on leave. I lead CARE International’s Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning work for our Women’s Economic Empowerment programmes.…

Senior Advisor – Financial Inclusion

Prior to joining CARE International UK as Senior Advisor – Financial Inclusion, I led the Women and Youth Financial Inclusion…

I joined CARE in August 2014, because I believe strongly in our focus on economic development, gender equality and people…

CARE International alumni

Many CARE staff who have written Insights blogs have since moved on to other roles. Your blogs are still part of the CARE story – and we welcome any future contributions you may make to Insights and to our shared learning on what works in humanitarian response and international development.

Nathan Randall was formerly a Financial Inclusion and Linkages Analyst for CARE Access Africa based in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.…

Lucy Beck was formerly an Emergency Communications Coordinator for CARE International.