Natasha Lewis

Senior Advocacy & Policy Advisor Humanitarian & Gender in Emergencies, CARE International

Natasha is passionate about gender equality and diversity in all forms – cultural, ethnic and especially diversity of thought. A first generation Indian New Zealander who grew up in Hawke’s Bay, was educated in Auckland and now works in Wellington, she believes the benefits of New Zealand’s ‘superdiversity’ must extend beyond our big cities. After graduating from Auckland Law School she worked for UN Women, the UN agency for women’s rights, in New York and Bangkok, and non-profit organizations in Melbourne and Mumbai. A year at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade in Wellington was followed by a Masters in International Law and Gender Studies at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) as New Zealand’s Chevening Scholar for 2014/15 (Chevening is a UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office scholarship for future national leaders). While at LSE she founded LSE Pro Bono Matters, a volunteer group of postgraduate law students producing research and submissions on human rights issues, and received the Lauterpacht/Higgins Prize for top scholar in Public International Law. She was a a part of the International Strategy team at the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, and is an active member of the Asia Literacy and Women in Leadership staff networks, having previously run the MFAT ethnic network and co-coordinated the MFAT women’s network.

Natasha is developing a Chevening Pasifika regional alumni network for Chevening Scholars from Australia, New Zealand, the Cook Islands, Fiji, Papua New Guinea and Samoa, to work on development projects in the Pacific. She is also a volunteer researcher for Wellington Rape Crisis, focusing on helping migrant and refugee women affected by violence. In her spare time she loves connecting with people and runs a monthly meet up of Wellington women interested in development, gender, law and politics (called Internationalistas). She also enjoys cooking, visiting family and friends in various corners of the globe and attempting to practice yoga.