Simião Mahumana

Director of Programs

Lions at Gorongosa National Park (Photo by Olivier Grunewald)

Gorongosa National Park has given me the opportunity to use my experience in conservation, natural sciences, education, rural development, rural finance, agribusiness and institutional development to to work as Director of Programs.

I started as an education activist, advocating for the establishment of the first private education legislation in Mozambique ( I created the first non-government owned secondary school after independence and managed it in voluntary basis for 8 years). I then had the opportunity to contribute to the consolidation of the Mozambican health system, teaching in courses promoting heath workers from basic to medium level.

I gained experience in third level institutions when I taught zoology systematics and animal behaviour at the Pedagogic University of Maputo, and Rural development at the Eduardo Mondlane University.

Extensive extension work with the Post-Graduate School of Agriculture and Rural Development of the University of Pretoria equipped me with the multidisciplinary requirements of rural development facilitation in Southern Africa, with particular focus on the development of local institutions, value chain development, and natural resources management in Mozambique, South Africa, Swaziland, Botswana, Lesotho and Zimbabwe.

The Centre of Applied Social Sciences of the University of Zimbabwe was my school in public policy promotion, and helped me to do my work as advocator for land tenure, education and social essential services. The low level of financial inclusion caught my attention, leading me to work in 72 districts of Mozambique, facilitating capacity building to vulnerable groups; this culminated with training and certification as a rural finance master trainer by the Canadian University of New Hampshire.

My work with development institutions includes leadership as National Director for Project HOPE and the SOS Children Villages, Program Facilitator for the WK Kellogg Foundation, Agribusiness/value chain specialist for the National Director for Promotion of Rural Development, and Regional Manager for World Vision. While working for these institutions, I gained experience with donors like USAID, IFAD, EU, AGRA, and NORAD.

The International Labour Organisation was a partner of particular skills development in local economic development, which culminated with work and publications with the Natural Resources Institute of the University of Greenwich.

I hold a MSc in Conservation Biology from the University of Cape Town, and a Honours Degree in Biology and Chemistry Education from the Pedagogic University of Maputo.

My current work as Director of Programs is to facilitate the work of a team of scientists, wildlife protectors, social service providers, community development activists, sustainable development practitioners, operation specialists and biodiversity lovers, to help Gorongosa biodiversity and buffer zone community to build a vision of co-existing development.