Meet the team

The Staff Team

Hazel Williams

National Director

Hazel Williams is NACCOM's National Director and has been in post since December 2017. Before then, Hazel was the Director at ASAP (Asylum Support Appeals Project), a post she held since April 2013. She has a wealth of experience of the sector, from previous work both in the UK and overseas. During her time at ASAP, she co-chaired the National Asylum Stakeholder Policy Forum for asylum support involving some senior Home Office staff as well as other key players in the voluntary and statutory sector. Hazel is based in Newcastle-upon-Tyne.

Hannah Gurnham

Communications Coordinator

Hannah joined NACCOM in June 2019 as the Communications Co-ordinator, overseeing NACCOM’s communications to all member organisations and raising the charity's profile. Hannah has over a decade's experience of PR and marketing within public and charity sector organisations, most recently in the homelessness sector, where she worked for six years at Winchester Churches Nightshelter. Hannah is based in Winchester and works three days a week.

Paul Catterall

Network Development Worker

Paul Catterall is a Network Development Worker for NACCOM, working five days per week to support new and existing members with capacity-building, partnership working and good practice. Paul lives in Middlesbrough with his family, and before joining the NACCOM staff team was the CEO of Open Door North East, a charity providing accommodation and other services to asylum seekers and refugees across the Tees Valley. He also served on the NACCOM Steering committee and subsequent Board of Trustees for a number of years.

Dave Smith

Network Development Worker

Dave Smith is a Network Development Worker for NACCOM, working three days per week to support members with capacity-building, partnership working and good practice. Dave lives in the North West and is a trustee of the Boaz Trust, a charity he founded in 2004, which manages 17 shared houses and runs a hosting scheme and winter night shelter. Dave also coordinates the Refugee Resource Centre for Churches and is the author of two books on asylum issues, the 'Book of Boaz' and 'Refugee Stories'.

Lucy Smith

Campaigns and Policy Coordinator

Lucy Smith is the Campaigns and Policy Co-ordinator for NACCOM, working full time to support members evidence destitution, challenge policy and procedures and raise a collective voice for change. Lucy lives in Sheffield and has worked for NACCOM since 2015. She has also held a number of other fundraising and communications roles within and beyond the sector, and has worked or volunteered to support an end to destitution for over a decade.

Diane Balsillie

Operations Coordinator

Diane Balsillie is NACCOM's Operations Coordinator and is based in the North East office 4 days per week. She formerly worked at a local University and has extensive experience working as an administrator. Diane will be working for NACCOM on a fixed term basis until May 2020 whilst Angela Stapley is on maternity leave, providing membership support and coordination of events amongst other activities.  In her spare time Diane enjoys travelling, music and arts and crafts.

Board of Trustees

Julian Prior

Julian Prior

Chair of Trustees

Julian Prior has been the Chair of Trustees since 2015, and has been involved with the network since it began. He is the CEO and founder of Action Foundation, an award-winning charity in the North East, working with asylum seekers and refugees in Newcastle and Sunderland. Julian is also a fellow of the Centre for Social Justice.

    Rachael Bee

    Rachael Bee

    NACCOM Trustee

    Rachael Bee is a Trustee for NACCOM, having been involved with the network since 2010 and a member of the Steering Group since 2012. In 2009 she helped set up Bristol Hospitality Network with Dr Naomi Milner and became the first paid Manager in 2014. She has also run a small social enterprise, Refugee Welcome Homes, since 2013.

      Caron Boulghassoul

      Caron Boulghassoul

      NACCOM Trustee

      Caron Boulghassoul is a Trustee of NACCOM, having been involved with the network since 2010 and a member of the Steering Group since 2012. Caron is the Chief Executive Officer at Nottingham Arimathea Trust, where she began involvement in 2009. Caron has been working within the refugee sector for 15+ years and is undertaking a Masters in Charity Resource Management.

        Jonny Darling

        NACCOM Trustee

        Jonny Darling is a Trustee of NACCOM and was elected to the board in September 2018. Jonny received his doctorate from the University of Durham in 2008 for his thesis on Cities of refuge: asylum and the politics of hospitality. Since then, he has lectured at universities in Scotland and Manchester and in 2018 returned to the North East as Assistant Professor in Human Geography at Durham University. His work on urban asylum has been widely recognised and in 2017, he received a University of Manchester ‘Making a Difference’ award for ‘outstanding impact on society through research’.

          Catherine Houlcroft

          NACCOM Trustee

          Catherine Houlcroft is a Trustee of NACCOM and was elected to the board in September 2018. Catherine is a Project Officer for the No Recourse to Public Funds (NRPF) Network and is based in Manchester. An experienced trainer and author of online publications with specialist knowledge of immigration law and policy, social care duties and entitlements to public services, she leads local government policy work nationally on NRPF service provision. She is dedicated to supporting practitioners and achieving positive outcomes for destitute migrants living in the UK.

            Assist Logo

            Jochen Kortlaender

            NACCOM Trustee

            Jochen Kortlaender is a Trustee of NACCOM and also works for ASSIST Sheffield, the largest accommodation provider to destitute asylum seekers in South Yorkshire. ASSIST Sheffield has been involved in NACCOM since the beginning, and Jochen joined ASSIST as the Accommodation Development Worker in 2013. Jochen is passionate about ending homelessness for destitute asylum seekers. Before joining ASSIST he worked on refugee and human rights issues for the UN and international NGOs in the Middle East.

              Abed Moubayed

              NACCOM Trustee

              Abed Moubayed is a Trustee of NACCOM and was elected to the board in September 2018. Now living in Manchester, Abed worked for various humanitarian organisations before coming to the UK, supporting Syrian, Iraqi and Palestinian refugees. He helped set up the Jesuit Refugee Service in Aleppo and Lebanon. Abed has a degree in organic chemistry and since coming to the UK has gained a masters in Post War Recovery Studies at the University of York which included a 2-month internship in Sarajevo working at the War Childhood museum.

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