Safe Mothers, Safe Babies

Safe Mothers, Safe Babies
Photo Credit: Anne Sherwood

16 November 2011

Introducing the new 2011-2012 Domestic Interns of Safe Mothers Safe Babies!

In September, SAFE gained twelve fabulous women as new domestic interns and volunteers! Check out their bios below:


Corrine Christison
My name is Corrine. I'm finishing up my undergrad at BYU, studying Anthropology and International Development. I'm only slightly obsessed with both.  My dream would be to do research in Africa to help build better policies in governments... at least I think that's what I want to do.  I love a good dance party and listening to a good story.  The end.  Oh! And I got interested in SAFE after meeting Jacquie in my Sociology class... and I'm the new secretary.  

International Internship Director (IID)

Ali Winters

I am originally from Corpus Christi, Texas.  I moved to Austin after graduating high school, and have now been here for about nine years.  I received my Bachelor of Science in Human Development and Family Sciences at the University of Texas.  Then, I went on to get an MPH degree with a global health concentration, and am currently in my first semester of the Doctor of Public Health program in Health Promotion and Behavioral Sciences. I am also working as a research assistant for the Michael and Susan Dell Center, doing research on childhood obesity prevention programs and policy evaluation. Outside of school and work, I like to spend time outdoors and see live music, two activities that can be done at many places in Austin.  There is no shortage of fun things to do here!  In the future, I hope to focus on maternal and neonatal health in the United States and abroad, and within this area, narrow my focus more specifically to nutrition for this population.  I am looking forward to working more with Safe Mothers, Safe Babies and supporting volunteers who will travel to Uganda to continue the wonderful work we are doing there!

Jefferson Medical College Internship Coordinator (JMCIC)

Caiti White 

My name is Caiti White, and I am a second year medical student at Jefferson Medical College (JMC) in Philadelphia, PA. I am originally from Arendtsville, PA, and graduated from Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, PA, in 2008 with a degree in neuroscience and Spanish. This past summer, I traveled to Uganda with two of my medical school classmates and spent 5 weeks in the Iganga district as a SAFE intern. During our time in Uganda, we worked closely with several community-formed groups by conducting many training workshops on topics such as safe motherhood, family planning, first aid, group management, and organic farming.  I am currently serving as a co-JMC internship coordinator and look forward to working with everyone at SAFE!

Melissa Vitolo

My name is Melissa and I'm one of the Jefferson Medical College Intern Coordinators for SAFE this year. I'm 24 years old and a 2nd year medical student at Jefferson in Philadelphia, where I also live. I went to Temple (also in Philly) for my undergrad degree in Biology & Religion. My family is from just outside of Philadelphia, where I grew up, so I haven't ventured far from home in my schooling but I love to travel! Hence my trip to Uganda this past summer where I volunteered for 5 weeks and had an AMAZING time. I hope to recruit even more awesome Jefferson people for a new trip this coming summer to continue to make a difference with SAFE.

University of Texas Internship Coordinator (UTIC) 

Lauren Hoffman

Lauren Hoffman was born in Dallas, Texas where she attended The Hockaday School for girls for fourteen years. After high school, she made a break for the southeast and became a bulldog at the University of Georgia. She graduated with a B.A. in anthropology and a minor in biology. Currently, she is a second year medical student at The University of Texas Medical School at Houston.

Domestic Internship Program Director

Emily Belnap

Emily Belnap received her associate of arts degree in 1998 from Ricks College and her bachelor of arts in English from Brigham Young University (BYU) in 2003. Emily worked in academic advising for BYU from 2001-2011 and held several positions throughout her career including student receptionist, office manager, senior advisor, and graduation evaluator. She received her master of science from Kansas State University in Academic Advising Administration in May 2010. Emily recently resigned from her beloved career at BYU to be a full-time mom. Emily loves being a mom and wife and also enjoys walking, cooking healthy and allergy-free foods (son has multiple food allergies), reading, and playing at the park with her son. Though Emily has had little experience with non-profit work and/or public health, she did serve an 18-month LDS mission to Paris, France where she met many African people and got to experience a taste of the African culture. Since she misses her work with BYU students, she is excited to work with the interns of SAFE and is hoping to learn more about non-profit work and public health.

Fundraising Chair

Johanna England
My name is Johanna England. I live in Houston, TX with my partner and four children. My education is in anthropology and my career interests are the research and reduction of health care disparities both globally and in the community. I spent five years in the US Navy as a Hospital Corpsman, working in women’s health. I have direct patient care experience in obstetrics and gynecology, labor and delivery, maternal fetal medicine and breast care. I am excited to be involved with the fantastic work of SAFE!

Communications Manager 

Lisa Evans
Lisa Evans hails from Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. She is currently a sophomore at Vassar College majoring in Science, Technology, and Society. She is especially interested in issues surrounding global health, sustainable development, the environment, and food. In her free time she loves to cook, eat, juggle, play sports, write, and go on adventures. She excited to gain experience and learn more about sustainable and participatory development in her new role.

International Operations Director

Katherine Meese

Katherine Meese was born in Austin, Texas, and graduated from Texas A&M University with a degree in Finance. After graduation, Katherine worked in Rwanda on a microfinance project in the coffee sector. She spent three years working as a financial analyst in the energy industry, in the US and Southeast Asia, before returning to graduate school. She is currently working on her Master’s in Public Health at the University of Texas School of Public Health, with a focus on global health and energy poverty. Katherine also serves as the Director of Business Development for AvanzarOak Ventures, working on projects ranging from coffee to solar power. In her spare time, Katherine enjoys photography, sailing, and hanging out with her fabulous husband.


Megan Andersen

Hi! My name is Megan Andersen and I’m a sophomore a Vassar college. My major is Neuroscience and behavior and I’m correlating in International Politics and potentially Italian. I’m an avid volleyball player and am on the Vassar Women’s team. It’s my favorite sport and I’ve been playing for 5 years now. I’m from Santa Monica California and am an only child. I love college and find the independence refreshing. I’m really interested in sustainable development. This past summer I travelled to Cambodia for 6 weeks on a development program with 10 other students. It was a life changing experience that opened my eyes to the struggles of helping people in a sustainable, culturally responsible way. I spoke with multiple NGOs and worked with a variety of communities and now have changed views on foreign aid, TOMS shoes and even Bono. SAFE caught my interest because of the focus on women and children. I support the feminist cause and look forward to finding sustainable solutions to care for women and children in Uganda.

Ashley Larsen

My name is Ashley Larsen and I was born and raised in North Ogden, Utah. I was born a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and my religion has been a very active part of my life. Another active part of my life has always been running – I ran cross country and track all throughout my Jr. High and High School days and just completed my first marathon. When I came to Brigham Young University I had a clear plan to graduate in Elementary Education and become the best teacher I possibly could. I had planned every detail and was excited about the person I was going to become. I soon learned that plans never really work out and found myself wrapped up in social work. I switched my major to Sociology and created a new plan to attend graduate school and get a master’s in social work. I went from being a volunteer at the Center for Women and Children in Crisis to being an employee and have fallen in love with my job; it really has changed me for the better. I found out about Safe Mothers Safe Babies when I found out and decided I wanted to help the PEAT program this year and have been excited since that day.

Rachel Fisher

Rachel Fisher is majoring in Sociology with two minors in International Development and French. She works for the International Development minor as coordinator for its network and for the Sociology department's 21st Century Project as a research assistant in evaluating after-school programs. Her focus is evaluation of development work and gender inequality issues. She went to Kiev, Ukraine in August 2010 to conduct a needs assessment for an NGO working with domestic violence issues. During the 2010-2011 school year, she was co-president to the club Students for International Development, in which it raised over $6,000 from its annual Hunger Banquet to donate to selected NGOs. Rachel speaks French and is currently learning Swahili. She was recently chosen for the Kennedy Scholar Award and continues to donate her time and efforts to several local NGOs.

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