The Friends of the Edward Said National Conservatory of Music UK are constituted by a Board of Trustees and Advisers, who oversee the delivery of the charity’s projects, approve its development plans and monitor its legal and financial obligations. The team is composed of individuals from diverse backgrounds, all of whom support the sustainability and advancement of the charity and are committed to help young Palestinians.
John Cope is a Conservative politician who was an MP from 1974 to 1997 and was then appointed to the House of Lords. From 1979 to 1994 he held various offices in the Governments of Margaret Thatcher and John Major, latterly as Paymaster General at the Treasury. He has a long interest in Palestine where his wife was born.
Wissam Boustany is an internationally renowned flutist, Professor of Flute at the Royal Northern College of Music and international peace campaigner. Having taught at the Edward Said National Conservatory of Music in Palestine on three occasions, he recently toured Indonesia with the Palestine National Orchestra. His international career has taken him to concerts across the world and, in 1997, he was presented with the Crystal Award at the World Economic Forum in Switzerland. Wissam was awarded a knighthood by the Lebanese government (Chevalier de l’Ordre du Cedre) in recognition of his music, which he continues to use as a powerful healing force to ‘help us reflect on our common humanity’.
From 2000 to 2014, Colin Green has been CEO of the charity the International Medical Education Trust 2000 (IMET2000) working primarily in Palestine but also in Africa (Senegal, Uganda, Ghana, Malawi) and the Ukraine. He has worked in Palestine since 1984 when he was an early and active member of Medical Aid for Palestine (MAP), then helped establish the first Palestinian Faculty of Medicine in 1994 in Al Quds University, together with a charity (FQMS) to support it. IMET2000 are currently running six large 5-year projects in the West Bank and Gaza as well as work in Ukraine, Uganda and Ghana. His main interest apart from surgical research, healthcare education, support of cultural activities and advanced training for Palestinians, is conflict resolution and the putative role of child mental health professionals in changing perceptions between hostile groups.
After studying Classics at Oxford, Robin Kealy served in the Diplomatic Service from 1967 to 2004 and spent most of his career in the Arab World. His early postings included Libya, Kuwait and Iraq. From 1997 to 2001 he was British Consul-General in Jerusalem -effectively Britain’s representative to the Palestinian Authority- and from 2002 to 2004 he was British Ambassador to Tunisia. Before joining the FESNCM UK, he was Chairman of the charity Medical Aid to Palestinians.
Michel Massih was born in Jerusalem and he moved to London to study Law. Over the last 33 years of his legal career Michel has defended in some of the most notorious leading criminal cases in the UK and Internationally. In 1999 he was appointed Queen’s Counsel and he is the only practising Queens’s Counsel of Arab origin in the world. Michel was recently awarded the prestigious ‘Outstanding Criminal Lawyer’ of year award by the Society of Asian Lawyers.
After studying in Lebanon and at Columbia University in New York, Lena Saleh started her professional career in teacher education with UNRWA in Nablus and Ramallah. She has also served as Director in Special Need Education in Lebanon and as consultant to the Ministry of Labour and Social Development in Jordan for two years. Lena joined UNESCO Headquarters in Paris from 1979 to 1999 as Senior Education Specialist, Head of Inclusive Education, before she moved to Palestine to work with the ESNCM as Deputy Director for Activities and PR.
Countess of Sandwich, Caroline Montague, has been involved with Saudi Arabia for 30 years, first as a business and financial writer and more recently studying civil society in Saudi Arabia, women’s issues, social services and the domestic NGO sector. Her most recent publication is a research report for Chatham House on aspects of Saudi civil society; among many others are a report for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on the Saudi NGOs and a paper for the Middle East Journal. She has been a Research Associate of the SOAS’ London Middle East Institute, a committee member of the Saudi British Society, on the Saudi British Joint Business Council and an honorary member of the Middle East Association.
Heba Zaphiriou-Zarifi is an Analytical Psychologist (Jungian Psychoanalyst), a registered member of the UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP), The Guild of Analytical Psychologists (GAP), and a member of the International Association for Analytical Psychology (IAAP). She runs private practices in London, Greece, and in the Middle East where she consults on psychosocial projects. Heba offers training in a method she has devised in building resilience for trauma relief. She also provides therapy on behalf of The British Refugee Council. Heba is also a Dance-Movement Therapist and Founder of The Central London Authentic Movement Group. She is a Leader in Bodysoul Rhythms© at The Marion Woodman Foundation. She has extensive experience in energy-based therapies including vibrations/sound therapy. She read Philosophy to Doctorate level at the Sorbonne where she also gained her Masters in Dance. Heba has a passionate love of music and singing in various choirs and was in a sextet with her siblings.
Sarah is a Master’s graduate in Arts Administration and Cultural Policy from Goldsmiths University of London. She also has degrees in Classics and Classical Philology from the Alma Mater Studiorum University of Bologna. She is Italian-Palestinian and is passionate about the arts and committed to enhance the cultural sector of Palestine.