Our Story

Shape Shape Shape

About Global Learning London

Our work stands on the shoulders of giants. We were incubated in the Tower Hamlets Schools Library Service (THSLS), of which we remain an integral part. While still in the womb, we fed on stories, books, public service, curiosity and wonder. We continue to fly the flag for THSLS and all other libraries from which we, and so many other sparks, were born.

Be Curious

Ask more questions. Challenge your own and others’ assumptions. Be critical but stay kind.

Protect the Earth

It is our only home. Reuse, Recycle, Regenerate. Reduce consumption. Then reward yourself with a forest shower (that’s a walk in the woods).

Take Action

Immerse yourself in your communities. Lend a hand to a cause. Be part of something good. Belong.

Dream Big

Be creative. No harm has ever come of imagining a better you and a better world. But stay grateful for all that you are and all that you have.


Entangle your beliefs and struggles with those of others. Build movements together. In a world where we are taught to compete, intentional collaboration is a radical act.

Share the Power

Whether we have a little or a lot of it, we can make small or big interventions to rebalance the power. Speak up. Give attention where it is lacking. Shine your light where it is needed.

We plant seeds for learner-led projects, then move out of the way and cheer them on as they grow. We seek to create environments where we are all learners – where power is truly shared.

What we do –
We work with children, young people and their wider communities, to cultivate optimism and action for a more just and sustainable world.

Why we do it –
We believe that a kinder, more equitable world is possible, one where people and planet thrive to their full potential and beyond.

How we do it –
We work together with teachers and schools to open up spaces for learning and enquiry into how to be better facilitators for our children’s growth and where global perspectives and indigenous wisdoms are central.

We create workshops, festivals and encounters to forge connections between children, young people and their local communities. We ensure families, small local businesses, and community are part of the conversation, and that children’s voices flow into them, and are amplified within them.

We plant seeds for learner-led projects, then move out of the way and cheer them on as they grow. We seek to create environments where we are all learners – where power is truly shared.

We change systems. We lobby government and local councils to reform education, from the bottom up.

We do all this with curiosity, creativity and critical thinking, and with art and culture at the heart.

We are not afraid to challenge and be challenged. Because our cause is greater than our fear.

What is Global Learning?

Global Learning, or Global Citizenship Education, aims to empower learners to engage and assume active roles locally, nationally and/or globally, to face and resolve global challenges and ultimately to become proactive contributors to a more just, peaceful and sustainable world. It builds on a diversity of world views and indigenous wisdoms to foster the knowledge, skills, values, attitudes and behaviours towards a kinder, more regenerative way of life. Global Learning is a key element of Target 4.7 of the Sustainable Development Goal 4 on Education: to ensure all learners acquire knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development, including among others through education for sustainable development and sustainable lifestyles, human rights, gender equality, promotion of a culture of peace and non-violence, global citizenship, and appreciation of cultural diversity and of culture’s contribution to sustainable development.


Hello World! This is us:

Alia Alzougbi (she/her) Head of Global Learning London

Alia is Head of GLL and has over 15 years of experience in education and cultural practice. She is an accredited Philosophy for Children practitioner and Relational Dynamics Coach. She is a Clore Fellow and a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and was, until very recently, among the core teaching staff at the British Museum. Alia is a performance storyteller and uses her coaching skills to volunteer with young people nationally and internationally.

Triny Diaz (she/her) Operations Manager

Triny is a Latinx event professional with over 15 years of global experience. Prior to joining our team, she produced events for major organisations in South and North America. She has experience in the heritage sector and working with schools managing learning programmes. She is responsible for operations at GLL, coordinates projects and manages the internal finances for the organisation as well as the promotion of our CPD, and events, alongside developing our community engagement.

Fatema Zehra (she/her) Communications Manager

Fatema has over 10 years' experience of branding and communications in the creative sector. She currently works with a host of organisations, including arts, mental health and education organisations, consulting them on their branding and marketing strategies.

Our Associates

Faaria Ahmad

Faaria has over 10 years’ experience of training, programme management and strategy in international development, governance and global education. She has facilitated training and workshops with teachers and students on global learning, international development, critical thinking and identity. She is Local Advisor for British Council’s Connecting Classrooms through Global Learning, a Global Teachers Award Trainer and Anti-racist CPD trainer.

Liz Allum

Liz has been working in Global Education for over 15 years. She has written numerous teaching resources and designs and delivers training on a wide range of subjects. She also works independently as a trainer and facilitator specialising in Philosophy for Children and Critical Thinking in education, as well as in delivering Global Education through the creative arts. With Global Learning London, Liz works on In Focus, in partnership with Rich Mix.

Stephen Ellis

Stephen has over 40 years of experience in education and held several senior management positions in both primary and secondary schools. For the last six years of service, he has been with a London Primary School as Assistant /Deputy Head. Now retired, he was appointed as a British Council Schools Ambassador for Global Learning and Local Advisor for British Council’s Connecting Classrooms through Global Learning.

Manju Patel-Nair

Manju is a secondary trained teacher in Media education, with a passion for creative cross-cultural encounters. She works across various fields encompassing youth participation, race, activism and interfaith dialogue. As a global citizenship practitioner, Manju’s work centers on pedagogies for ‘community building, this includes bringing diverse groups of people into shared spaces. With Global Learning London, Manju works on Creative Communities and @The Heart of Communities.

Linda Ramirez Barker

Linda is a trained primary teacher with over a decade of classroom practice, specialising in global learning over 20 years ago. She offers expertise in training, resource writing and evaluation, having worked on a range of projects and consultancies with British Council, Local Authorities, Government Departments and Development NGOs. Linda works on Sankofa: Storytelling for a Digital Age, Tower Hamlets School Linking Project and Shared Ground CPD: Migration and Integration in the UK.

Anne Roots

Anne has been the manager of Connect (The Network for Global Learning in Education) based in North London and worked within Barnet's School Improvement Service for over 20 years providing guidance, support and training for schools around global learning and embedding this approach within the curriculum. Anne is a British Council Schools Ambassador, a UK Global Learning Association Consultant, Connecting Classrooms Through Global Learning (CCGL) Local Advisor and trainer and an assessor for a range of funded global programmes.

Lisa Taner

Lisa is a primary trainer and has a wealth of experience in education working across London, the UK and internationally, supporting teachers and school leaders in developing global learning. Her strengths are in curriculum and content development and supporting students who are new to English, including international new arrivals and refugees. Lisa is an Associate Lecturer for the Open University in Comparative Primary Education. Her research interests are in teacher education and educational technology, the theme of her MRes.

Sheila Tucker

Sheila is an educator, researcher and writer with a Masters in Education for Sustainability and 30 years as a Development Education /Global Learning practitioner. As a Global Learning London Associate, she has written resources for linking, evaluated COCO and @HOC projects and researched and written on Migration and Integration for Shared Ground. Since founding Global Thinking Network of freelance practitioners, she has designed and run training for Cambridge International Education, DEEP (EU), Oxfam and DFID’s Global Learning Programme, evaluated British Council’s Connecting Classroom Programmes and sat on GLP’s National Advisory Board.

Our Management Committee

Professor Douglas Bourn

Doug is Professor of Development Education at University College London Institute of Education and is Co-Director of the Development Education Research Centre. He has authored a number of books on the theory and practice of Development Education. He is chair of the advisory board for the Academic Network for Global Education Researchers (ANGEL) and is currently on the Advisory Committee for the UK’s main development education programme, Connecting Classrooms Through Global Learning.

Juan de Lara

Juan is the Cultural Programme Manager at Asia House and associate consultant for Barker Langham. His past roles include Finance Manager and Head of Development at Parasol Unit, which helped to improve the educational needs of the borough of Hackney. In 2017 he developed the Pavilion of Humanity at the International Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia. Having worked at Ogilvy & Mather Group, Juan has a passion for education and marketing initiatives.

Annika Eadie-Catling

Annika is Headteacher at William Davis Primary School in Tower Hamlets. Over the last thirty years, she has been a teacher and leader in Camden, Hackney and Tower Hamlets schools. Her roles have included SENCO/Inclusion lead teacher; Deputy Headteacher with responsibility for Curriculum and Assessment and Headteacher with responsibility for Standards and Safeguarding.

Alison Gawthrope

Alison has worked in primary education in Tower Hamlets for over thirty years, as a teacher and leader in school, and then as an advisory teacher and school improvement officer in the local authority. She has a wealth of knowledge when supporting and challenging governors, leaders and teaching staff to ensure the best possible outcomes for their children. Alison leads Tower Hamlets Educational Partnership Primary Team.

Gillian Harris MBE

Gillian is the Head of the Tower Hamlets School Library Service. She started work with Tower Hamlets in 1991 and in that time has built and developed the Schools Library Service, which provides a range of services including books, artefacts, and other educational resources to enrich teaching, consultancy and advice, and providing primary schools with the expertise of professional librarians to manage and develop their own school libraries.

Zinèbe Maach

Zinèbe is a French Moroccan parent with an interest in building bridges in the community. Her engagement in issues of social, racial and gender equality led her to volunteer with social research projects tackling poverty in Tower Hamlets. She believes in the power of education, where school is a building block to help children grow into well-rounded individuals who contribute to society. After an extensive experience as a freelance translator for NGOs, Zinèbe is now a health and wellbeing practitioner, supporting migrants to overcome systemic barriers.

Dr. Helen Young

Helen is a Senior Lecturer in Education at London South Bank University (LSBU) and teaches on the BA Education Studies and the EdD. Prior to her 2014 PhD in Sociology of Education, she worked in citizenship education and global learning, including for Think Global.

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