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Chris Underhill

Chris Underhill is a social entrepreneur working with marginalised people. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science from the University of London and later with an M.Sc in International Policy from the School for Policy Studies, University of Bristol. He worked for Voluntary Service Overseas in Zambia, an experience which led him into a career in development where he has specialised in leadership, disability, mental health and appropriate technology. With regard to disability and mental health, Underhill has founded a number of organisations including Thrive (formerly known as Horticultural Therapy), a UK based charity working with disabled people and medical professionals in horticulture, gardening and agriculture, Action on Disability and Development, a development agency targeting disabled people in the third world, and Basic Needs, which works with people with mental disorders and their careers in Ghana, Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Lao PDR and Vietnam.He has also served as chief executive of the Intermediate Technology Development Group (now Practical Action), the charity founded by E.F. Schumacher, author of ‘Small is Beautiful’. He went on to found the UK member organisation of International Development Enterprises known as IDE UK and he is currently Chair of the Ashden Awards for Sustainable Energy.

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