The Team

Dr. Shannon Doherty

Primary Investigator, COMGAP-S Project, GlobalHME Research Group
School of Allied Health, Faculty of Health, Education, Medicine, and Social Care
Anglia Ruskin University

Dr. Doherty is Primary Investigator of the COMGAP-S project, managing project activities in the UK and Sri Lanka. Her PhD thesis explored ethical challenges involved in conducting health research with people who have been trafficked for sexual and labour exploitation. Her key areas of research interest are global mental health, migration, public health and human trafficking.

Ms. Gergana Manolova

Research Associate, COMGAP-S Project
Globally Minded Foundation

Ms. Manolova is currently a research associate in the COMGAP-S project, responsible for supporting research activities remotely, managing data and compiling analyses and results. Ms. Manolova has experience with research in global mental health and working with psychological therapies. Her interests include global mental health, psychological and psychiatric anthropology, migration and psychotherapy. She has MSc in Global Mental Health, MA in Clinical & Counselling Psychology and a BA in Psychology.

Ms. Giselle Dass

Research Associate and Project Administration Officer
COMGAP-S Project

Ms. Dass is currently a research associate and project administration officer for the COMGAP-S project. She is responsible for the overall efficient day-to-day management of the project in Sri Lanka. Ms. Dass has international experience working and conducting research on issues of child and adolescent mental health services. She also has experience working with the International Organization for Migration providing counselling and rehabilitation services for migrants as well as developing community infrastructure projects within Sri Lanka focusing on conflict-affected areas of the country.

Ms. Madonna Solomon

Senior Research Assistant


Having completed her BSc (hons) in Psychology from Coventry University (UK), Ms. Solomon possesses five years of professional experience as a kindergarten teacher in the early childhood education sector. During that period, she was also greatly involved in assisting children with learning disabilities and bringing awareness among parents about the importance of child mental wellbeing. Although mainly passionate about child mental health, for her undergraduate thesis she focused on studying the factors affecting the psychological wellbeing of adults in Sri Lanka where she validated a wellbeing scale in order to compare the levels of mental wellbeing among the urban and rural populations in a Sri Lankan context. Making use of her background in psychology and research, she is currently working for THEME institute as a senior research assistant; contributing her knowledge and skills for the ongoing research COMGAP-S II and several other projects which is being carried out through THEME.

Ms. Anne Edward

Senior Field Research Assistant


Ms. Edward joined COMGAP-S project as a volunteer of the initial data collection as an undergraduate. After having completed her BSc (Hons) in Psychology from Coventry University, UK, she joined THEME Institute as a full time member and is responsible for the field data collection and administrative activities in the project office in Vavuniya, Sri Lanka. She also contributes in training medical professionals in the Northern Province in mental health. Her background is in administrative work in the corporate field and she has also been involved in volunteer work, assisting children with developmental delays in care homes and tutoring children with learning disabilities in math and English. Her interests are in mental health awareness and she wishes to continue her studies in psychotherapy, counselling and psychosocial support.

Umajasotha Mahenthiran

Research Assistant

Ms. Mahendiran is currently a research assistant in the COMGAP-S project. She is based in the project office in Vavuniya. She is responsible for supporting data collection activities in the field and also for bookkeeping related to administration. She is also involved in training medical nurses and assistants and community representatives on mental health awareness. She is currently a student at the National Institute of Social Development and continuing her studies in counseling. She is also an external student at the University of Peradeniya for a  Bachelor of Arts degree. She wishes to continue her studies in counseling psychology.


Satkunarajah Vithushan

Office Assistant

Mr. Vithusan is from Vavuniya, Sri Lanka, and has previously worked as a driver and logistics officer in distribution and sales. Within the COMGAP-S project he assists with the maintenance of the office, the clinical trial schedule and logistics. He aspires to become an ambulance driver as he cares deeply about the health services and health access in the Northern Province.

Mr. Fritz Jooste

Web Developer and Technology Consultant

Mr. Jooste is a freelance web developer and information designer who has worked with multiple South African and international organizations, including Bloomberg Philanthropies, SHM Foundation, Right2Know Campaign, Code for South Africa, Ndifuna Ukwazi and the SOS Coalition. His educational background is in global mental health, psychology and social anthropology. His main areas of expertise are web development, UX consulting and the interface between technology and mental health.