Dedicated to Helping Improve Mental Health & Wellbeing in Sri Lanka

Dr Shamil Wanigaratne

Consultant Clinical Psychologist | Chair

Shamil studied psychology at the University of Nottingham and City University London and following his postgraduate training in clinical psychology in 1987, has worked in the fields of addictions and genito-urinary medicine. He was until 2011, head of psychology for the Addictions Division of the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, which is part of King’s Health Partners. He is also a director of Samutthana the King’s College London Resource Centre for Trauma Displacement and Mental Health in Colombo, Sri Lanka. He was a co-founder of the UK-Sri Lanka Trauma Group and the British Psychological Society’s Faculty of Addiction.

Throughout his career he has worked hard to combine clinical practice with academic research. He has been and is currently involved in a number of research collaborations. His clinical and research interests include cognitive and neuropsychological aspects of addictions, initiation and maintenance of behaviour change, outcome measurement, culture and substance misuse, psychological impact of trauma and the association between trauma and addictive behaviours.

He has acted as a consultant to UK Government bodies and internationally, to a number of countries.

Dr Anita Marsden

Clinical Psychologist | Vice Chair

Dr Anita Marsden is a Clinical Psychologist with extensive training and experience of working from a psychological perspective with individuals of all ages, families and systems.

Anita is passionate about teaching and training and has taught internationally in many settings, including NHS services, universities, churches and festivals.

Anita loves sharing knowledge and skills in a variety of subjects including; mindfulness, parenting, cognitive behavioural therapy, systemic and narrative perspectives and positive psychology. She currently works part time in an NHS paediatric service.

Dr Wineetha Perera

Dental Surgeon (retired) | Treasurer

Wineetha is the only non-mental health professional in the Committee of UKSLTG. A retired General Dental Practitioner with  37 years of experience was self-employed through out her career. She has been the Hon. Treasurer of UKSLTG since 2013. Her other interests are in Music and aiding a  charitable project in rural Sri Lanka to promote English among school children.

Dorian Cole

Nurse Consultant | Membership Secretary

Mr Dorian Cole is the membership secretary of UKSTG. He is an NMC registered nurse, having trained in general nursing, mental health nursing and health visiting, and a systemic psychotherapist, graduating from the Institute of Family Therapy in 2000.

He is currently employed by Whittington Health NHS Trust as a consultant psychotherapist and clinical lead of the Haringey Lets-Talk IAPT primary care psychological therapy service, and as Head of Nursing, Quality and Prevention Services. He has a wide range of NHS clinical and management experience over the last 30 years within Child Mental Health and Child Welfare, Adult Mental Health, Acute Hospital and Primary Care Settings.

In 2015, he spent six months in Sri Lanka volunteering with UKSTG and working with Sammuthana, co-running their first CBT training program, working with the Ministry of Health in their enhancing nurse training programme, and working with the mental health team in Vavunuiya in helping to set up their new child mental health service amongst other projects.

Dr Lorna Fortune

Counselling Psychologist | Volunteer Co-ordinator

Dr Lorna Fortune is a Counselling Psychologist currently working in psychiatric liaison with Barnet Enfield and Haringey Mental Health Trust. In 2015 Lorna spent six months volunteering in Sri Lanka with Samutthana and on her return joined the executive committee. Lorna awarded her Doctorate in 1999 and has wide experience of clinical practice, supervision, leadership, teaching and training.

Lorna was previously employed as a Clinical Team Leader for an IAPT service in a multi-cultural North London borough. She also has experience of working in voluntary sector organisations and has been a Senior Lecturer on a Counselling Psychology DPysch program. Her particular areas of expertise include PTSD, psychological medicine and multi-cultural working.

Dr Laura Kemmis

Clinical Psychologist | Committee member

Laura became involved with the UK Sri Lanka Trauma group whilst collaborating on research with Dr Shamil Wanigaratne. She spent time volunteering in Sri Lanka during 2011-2012. Inspired by the dedicated Sri Lankan mental health practitioners she encountered as well as the brilliant work of Samutthana, she became a member of the executive committee on her return to the UK.

Laura studied psychology at the University of Sussex and completed a Masters in Substance Misuse. She worked as a dual diagnosis worker within addiction and homeless services for several years where she gained experience of working with refugees and asylum seekers suffering from complex mental health disorders. She completed her Clinical Psychology training at the Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London.

Laura’s clinical and research interests include addiction, psychosis, trauma and the association between addiction and trauma. She also worked as a researcher for the reference group to the United Nations on HIV and Injecting Drug Use reviewing global policy. She is interested in global mental health policies and is dedicated to mental health capacity building in Sri Lanka through the work of the UK-SLTG and Samutthana. She currently works at the Traumatic Stress Clinic (Camden and Islington NHS Trust).

Professor Rachel Tribe

Consultant Counselling Psychologist | Committee member

Professor Rachel Tribe is Professor of Applied Psychological Practice at the School of Psychology, University of East London. In 2014 she was awarded the British Psychological Society Award for Challenging Social Inequalities in Psychology. She is a Fellow of the British Psychological Society. She has over 30 years experience of developing clinical services and conducting research both in the UK and abroad.

She is active in national and international consultancy and training work. She has experience of working in the private, public, charity and academic sectors. She has worked clinically with a range of diverse communities. She has been a member of the UK: Sri Lanka Trauma group since its inception. The link to her web page is

Dr Shanthy Parameswaren

Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist | Committee Member

Dr Shanthy Parameswaran qualified as a Doctor from the faculty of Medicine, Colombo in 1966 and left Sri Lanka in 1972 for postgraduate studies first to the U.S.A and later to the U.K.  She completed training in Psychiatry at St Georges University Hospital in London and worked as a consultant in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry for over 25 years until her retirement in 2006.

Shanthy’s interest in Charity work was facilitated by the Sathya Sai Baba Organisation, medical branch which provided Shanthy the opportunity to work in Zambia, India and Sri Lanka as a medical volunteer. In 2002 Shanthy was able to work in both Jaffna and Vanni district with other organisations eg UNICEF.

Later having joined the UKSLTG as an Executive Committee member she has continued to work in a voluntary capacity with people traumatised by the ethnic conflict and the Tsunami. In addition to direct work with the affected people Shanthy has been able to provide training, consultation and supervision to workers(teachers, NGO’s, INGO’s, volunteers) and also participated in conferences and present the work of the organisation. Recently in Dec 2007 with colleague, Dr Harriet Calvert The work of the group was presented at the international conference on Trauma in Finland organised by the Dept of Health, Finland.

Following retirement Shanthy works part time for the Ministry of Justice as their medical member for the Mental Health Review Tribunals. Retirement has given her time to pursue other important charity work with Child Aid Lanka and The Tamil Women’s Development Forum in U.K.

Bill McGowan

Nurse Senior Lecturer (retired) | Executive Committee Member

I have been working in mental health and social care education for the past 21 years. I retired from my tenured post as a Senior Lecturer at the University of Brighton in 2015 where I taught across the full range of pre-registration and undergraduate mental health nursing and post graduate health and social care courses including the supervision of interdisciplinary research students at masters and doctoral level. I remain engaged professionally on a number of fronts and I currently hold an Honorary Community Fellowship at the University of Brighton.

I have been a member of the UK Sri Lanka Trauma Group Committee since 2010 and had been involved in educational consultancy work with the group between 2004 – 2009. My current remit within the group is to promote the participation of students and qualified mental health nursing professionals and individuals with ‘lived experience’ of mental health problems in the volunteering programme.