“To see the momentum in financial support for Sanctuary starting to snowball is a very exciting thing, and to see the joy on the faces of the refugees, who are now filled with a hope for a safe and productive future after being assisted by Sanctuary, is a clear indication of the desperate need there is for Sanctuary’s work to expand to new levels in order to assist more suffering people”.

Glenn Pearce, Treasurer

Peter Hallam, CEO, Sanctuary Co-Founder, OAM

Peter Hallam, CEO Sanctuary Australia FoundationPeter Hallam, CEO and Founder of Sanctuary has worked with refugees for over 23 years, starting his work in Canada where he gained his training and experience in refugee settlement. Peter brings a managerial background to Sanctuary and has owned and run three successful businesses in Alberta, Canada with a large team of employees.

Lani Carmody, Secretary

lani-carmody-150x150Lani has been motivated to take a more proactive role in supporting others to take advantage of their opportunities by observing the conditions in which many of the world’s people live overseas. She has volunteered in Thailand working with the victims of the HIV AIDS virus & in Papua New Guinea focusing on ophthalmology. She holds qualifications in Training & Small Business Management & is a Justice of the Peace.

Glenn Pearce, Treasurer

Glenn Pearce, Sanctuary Australia Foundation TreasurerGlenn holds a Bachelor of Business Degree in Accounting, an Advanced Diploma in Accounting, is a member of the National Institute of Accountants (NIA) in Australia, and is a partner in a local Accounting firm in Coffs Harbour. He is married with children, and is actively involved in other charity projects based in India and Indonesia.

Glenn became involved with the Sanctuary Australia Foundation after learning of the unselfish hard work the Foundation members do to share the freedom and abundance we enjoy in our community with people from other cultures around the world who are suffering terribly.

Sue Hallam, Board Member, Sanctuary Co-Founder, OAM

Sue Hallam, Board Member and Co-founder of Sanctuary Australia FoundationShe studied at the London College of Fashion, before she and Peter emigrated to Canada.There she worked as a sportswear designer,and started her own design/dressmaking business.

Sue has always been involved in social justice issues, did Leadership Training studies and worked with refugees from Central America. After emigrating to Australia in 1987, Sue and Peter started Sanctuary, and remain strongly committed to helping refugees, sharing their wisdom, and involving the wider community in this important work.

Youssef Haddad, Board Member and Migration Agent

Youssef Haddad

Youssef Haddad is a Director and a Principal Registered Migration Agent with Immigration Law Matters (Australia) since 2005. He is also a founding member.

Youssef has a strong understanding of the Migration Act and the Migration Regulations which allows him to effectively resolve complex migration matters.

Some of the matters that Youssef specializes in include Character Cancellations, Bogus Documents, Health Waivers, Onshore un-lawful Criteria, visa refusals. Youssef also handles Migration and Refugee Review Tribunal Cases and is also responsible for Ministerial Intervention cases.

Youssef also has a strong knowledge of Refugee and Humanitarian Visas, both onshore and offshore. 

Youssef has completed the Graduate Certificate in Migration Law and Practice. Youssef is originally from Lebanon and also speaks fluent Arabic. He migrated to Australia in 1976 with his parents at the commencement of the civil war in Lebanon. His interest in assisting refugees stems from his cultural background (Middle East) where he has witnessed the continual need for re-settlement for persecuted minorities. Youssef is deeply involved in the current Syrian crisis, representing many Syrian and Iraqi refugees apply for re-settlement to safe countries. Youssef also assists with a number of local charities, providing pro-bono advice for refugee law and re-settlement issues.

Mark Dominic Hallam, Board Member and Office Manager

Mark Hallam, Board Member and Office ManagerMark Hallam has been working with Sanctuary Australia Foundation since 2006. He holds a BA of Arts in Multimedia and has worked previously in information technology and as a teacher in Japan. He grew up watching his parents humanitarian work and has developed great compassion and empathy for the suffering of humanitarian entrants. He enjoys playing guitar and building websites in his spare time.

Michele Matthews-Potter, Board Member

Michele Mathews-Potter, Board Member of Sanctuary Australia FoundationAustralian born, Michele has spent most of her working life based in the UK with 2 overseas contracts with aid organisations through the British Government. She has Worked in Vanuatu for 5 years as an Administration Officer which included training locals. In Uganda, she worked for 7 years as a Systems and Computing Manager. She has also worked as a volunteer in Sri Lanka since the tsunami in 2005. She has been involved with sustainable work with womens groups amongst many other aspects of aid work in a developing country – self funded. She has a Community Development Certificate and has spent most of her adult life traveling and living in other countries.

Zehrina Hajdic, Board Member

zehrina-hajdicZehrina Hajdic is the Housing Services Manager at Community Housing Limited, NSW. Originally from Bosnia, she arrived in Australia in 1996 after her family was assisted by Sanctuary. She is married and has 2 children.

Through her work she has helped the local community in general and continued to make a real difference to people’s lives by providing safe, secure and affordable homes to those in need. She is a valuable member of Sanctuary’s board with her deep links in the local community.

Rob Brangwin, Board Member

Rob BrangwinRob Brangwin was born in England, has spent much of his life in New Zealand but now calls Coffs Harbour home. He has filled a variety of roles over the years; as a community educator, an ambulance officer and hotel manager. Rob holds a Bachelor Degree in Social Work, something that he hopes to put to use with refugee groups in the Coffs Harbour community. Rob has had extensive involvement organising fundraising events here and in New Zealand for charities such as Childfund and Greenpeace. When not on his mountain bike Rob can often be found on his longboard enjoying the waves of Sawtell beach.

Karen Brangwin, Board Member

Karen BrangwinKaren has spent most of her life travelling and living around the world whilst working within the hotel industry. Most recently Karen calls Coffs Harbour home and lives in Toormina with her husband Rob. Karen has been involved in ongoing work with charities such as Childfund and has managed behind the scenes for many of Rob’s fundraising events.