Mr. Gopinath T. Menon
Mr. Gopinath T. Menon is a Development Specialist with over 30 years of experience working to improve the lives of children and women, 25 years of which he spent with UNICEF in India.
A graduate of the XLRI – Xavier School of Management in India, Gopi began his career with the Child In Need Institute (CINI) in Kolkata where he was responsible for planning and implementing various projects of the Institute. He played a key role in setting up the Chetana Training Centre and supported the initiation of training of ICDS and other functionaries for both the government and the non-governmental sectors. Later, he was also responsible for the overall management of the Institute during 1983 and 1984. He also served as a member of the Board of Governors of CINI.
Gopi joined UNICEF in 1984 as the Community Development and Nutrition Officer responsible for the State of Andhra Pradesh and Orissa. He was later promoted to the position of State Program Officer for Orissa (1989-1991). In 1991, he was given the responsibility for setting up the largest UNICEF State Office in India (Bihar). A key assignment was to lead the Bihar Education Project, the first ever district based Education Project jointly implemented by Government of India, Government of Bihar and UNICEF with the larger goal of societal restructuring through education interventions.
Then, as Chief of the UNICEF Mumbai State Office (1998 – 2009) that served a population of over 100 million, he was responsible for development of the UNICEF State Plans of Action through consultations with the government and civil society representatives as well as supporting and overseeing its implementation.
Post retirement from UNICEF, Gopi has been associated with SPARSH – Centre for Participatory Learning – focusing his energy on developing a network of highly competent development trainers fully skilled in participatory training techniques. With close to 1,000 trainers and 3,000 facilitators currently in the network, SPARSH is supporting/has supported UNICEF, Government of Maharashtra and the Government of India in a number of large scale training and capacity building activities.
Gopi continues to provide his community development expertise through providing consultancies.