Nathan Farrugia - President
Nathan Farrugia is a physiotherapist by profession and an MBA graduate from Strathclyde. Before serving as CEO of Inspire since 2009, he was the CEO of the Razzett tal-Hbiberija and the driver behind the merger with the Eden Foundation to create Inspire. Together with the team of trustees, Nathan steered the organisation through the dedicated and capable senior managers that, in turn, empower the rest of the team and volunteers to work with clients, support and raise funds with the common vision to see all people with disabilities included in society. In September 2014 he was appointed President of the Board.Nathan is a husband to Deirdre and father to Robyn and Keira. He is an avid endurance athlete and regularly volunteers to raise funds for Inspire and other worthy causes through extreme challenges. He chairs the Malta Voluntary Organisations Council, and is a director on other charities and business boards.
Antonello Gauci - CEO
Antonello Gauci joined Inspire six years ago. After 18 years in the corporate world of business and investments, Antonello decided to take up what he loved doing most, as a full time job. At the time, the merge between Razett tal-Hbiberija and The Eden Foundation was about to take place and since then Antonello has been involved in every aspect of the organization. Before being appointed CEO, Antonello’s most recent role was that of Chief Operating Officer responsible for the Foundation’s commercial arm, which includes the running of the fitness center and indoor pool, as well as the charity shops. Antonello’s role also incorporated HR, IT and operations.
In his personal capacity Antonello is involved in several business activities and the organization of various philanthropic and sportive events. He is a trustee of The Alfred Mizzi Foundation and a founding member of The Ladybird Foundation. For the past 23 years he’s also served on the Voices committee, which he has also chaired for the past eight years.
Ms. Paula Doumanov – qualified as an Occupational Therapist (OT) in 1994, and subsequently obtained a Masters in OT from the University of Exeter (UK). Her research was specifically focused on clinical reasoning skills. During the last 20 years of her career, she worked as an OT in several countries including the USA, UK, Bulgaria & Malta, enabling her to gain extensive experience in a range of diverse settings. She initially specialized as a senior therapist in the field of Neurology, and later became a Clinical Specialist & Clinical Lead OT – setting up OT services & providing professional leadership in Accident & Emergency (A&E) & Supported Discharge Teams as part of Winter Pressure initiatives to reduce waiting lists within the National Health Service (NHS), as well as OT services within a newly established Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Service. Paula has completed numerous training courses, and attended workshops & seminars. She has also published several papers in professional journals, magazines & newspapers. Paula is currently employed as Inspire’s Chief Services Officer leading all disability related services by bringing together expertise & knowledge that is unique to the organization, in order to ensure that the design & content, as well as the delivery of all of its services, are of the highest possible standard & quality & championing client satisfaction across the organization; to develop services & to widen Inspire’s circle of influence and support to the larger community.
Ms. Mercieca has been working in the field of autism for the past 25 years, initially being a tutor facilitating children from 0 to 16 years. She was responsible for the founding and coordination of STEP (Structured Training and Education Programme) for children with autism and was appointed manager of Inspire’s autism programmes catering to more than 150 clients. Ms. Mercieca has recently been appointed as ASD Advisor and also forms part of the Expert Panel at Inspire. Her overall responsibilities include ensuring total quality management across all ASD programmes and services, the further development of specialized autism services and policies while maintaining already achieved National Autistic Society (NAS) UK accreditation standards. Ms. Mercieca forms part of the NAS Autism Accreditation Programme as a member of the Autism Awards Accreditation Panel where she contributes to the collective decisions taken by the board to decide whether there is sufficient evidence to demonstrate that specialized services/schools meet the criteria in order to be awarded accredited status. Ms. Mercieca also participates in evaluating specialised services and schools in the UK as a NAS Accreditation team member. She has completed numerous training courses, has attended workshops and seminars locally and abroad and has participated in EU projects. Ms. Mercieca has obtained a Masters of Education (Autism) with the University of Birmingham.
Alison Bezzina, is responsible Inspire’s marketing and PR function. Her role is that of giving a stronger voice to persons with disabilities and their families.
With fifteen years experience in marketing and communications, Alison Bezzina decided to leave the corporate world to pursue her lifelong dream of working for a cause she truly believes in. Inspire’s work is very close to Alison’s heart because her brother, who just turned 33, suffers from an intellectual disability. Because of this experience Alison grew up with the belief that physical and intellectual impairments are not the main cause of disability, but society and the norms it sets can surely be. At Inspire she uses her passion for the cause, her personal experience in the field of disability as well as her writing talent, to improve and increase the public’s awareness of Inspire’s work and, more importantly, the genuine cause that it represents.
One of her favourite quotes; “The only disability in life is a bad attitude.” – Scott Hamilton
Giovanna Mirabile Bartolo has been working with Inspire since its creation following the merger between Razzett tal-Hbiberija and the Eden Foundation in 2009, prior that, had occupied the post of Financial Controller within The Eden Foundation. During the period the she had worked at The Eden Foundation pursued her studies and became a member of Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) and Malta Institute of Accountants.
After four years working as Operations & Business Units Manager her role today with Inspire Foundation is that of Fund Raising Events Manager. Her role is to lead and manage the existing fundraising team and volunteers, working with own events and community ones. Develop and implement an effective fundraising strategy, in line with the organisation’s plan and goals. She is responsible too for a number of projects, having the overall responsibility for the successful initiation, planning, design, execution, monitoring, controlling and closure of the specific project.
On a personal note, she is the mother of two young sons and enjoys involving herself in various sports activities and currently volunteers as Treasurer with Floriana FC Nursery. She is actively involved in the running of her family business within the catering industry and finds immeasurable the type of satisfaction the service industry provide.
She continuously promotes models of good care and practice and supports the different needs of our clients. Focusing on raising funds through giving services within our own facilities, like the Fitness Centre and Animal Park and maximise return for donated goods via our charity shops. All this by maintaining high standards of professional service and ensure that all staff abides by ethical standards of privacy and respect for each individual client.
Kurt Castillo is Inspire’s Complementary, Therapeutic & Activities Services Manager.
Kurt completed his Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Therapy at the University of Malta in 2002 and has worked as a speech and language pathologist ever since. From 2011-2014 years he has managed 4 childcare centres operated by the Foundation for Educational Services. Kurt has also participated and worked as a trainer in numerous EU funded projects in various countries across Europe.
Kurt has a passion for the creative arts and has been involved in the local TV and theatre scene for the past 18 years. After completing his studies in Speech & Drama and in the Performing Arts with Trinity College, Kurt has delivered theatre workshops both locally and abroad.
Towards the end of 2014, he joined Inspire – The Foundation for Inclusion and serves as Complementary and Therapeutic Services & Activities Manager. The areas which he manages include traditional therapeutic services mainly Occupational therapy, Physiotherapy, Psychology and Speech-Language pathology as well as complementary services mainly Therapeutic Horseback Riding, Multi-Sensory Therapy, Therapeutic and Creative Arts, Winter Programme and Summer programme and activities.