Meet us

cewas Middle East is the regional branch of the Swiss cewas Start-Up program. We offer professional training, coaching, mentorship and consulting in business development for sustainable water, sanitation and resource management.

Our goals are to increase the role of the private sector and entrepreneurship in tackling the environmental issues of the region. Our programs focus on addressing environmental challenges in Lebanon, Palestine, Jordan and Iraq.


Our mission is to:

Bridge the entrepreneurship and water sectors to create more sustainable solutions in water, sanitation and resource management

Support humanitarian water and sanitation actors in the Middle East to improve the sustainability of their services

Development of innovative Resource Recovery and Reuse (RRR) projects



We are a team of practitioners dedicated to linking business practices with sustainability. We have a long term experience in the Middle East and believe in making things happen!

Lillian Volat

Project Leader cewas Middle East | Tel. +970 (0)598 358 637

Lillian studied International Relations and Environmental Politics at the University of Lingnan as well as Business Development in Sustainable Sanitation and Water Management at the University of Lucerne. She has 7 year of experience working with various NGO’s in the Middle East focusing on innovative sanitation technologies, water management, sustainable agriculture development and green start-ups. She is responsible for running cewas Middle East programmes as well as strategic partnership development.

Michael Kropac

Co-Director | Tel. +41 (0)78 872 67 44

Michael studied geography, business management and social and environmental sciences. After founding the NGO “Ecosan Services Foundation” with local partners in Pune, India, he joined seecon international and is today senior partner and is its CFO. Michael has more than 10 years of experience as a consultant in developing innovation projects in the international water sector and beyond. Michael  facilitates and leads the cewas start-up programme and is the head coach.

Leonellha Baretto Dillon

Project manager and trainer | Tel. +41 (0)79 511 02 54

Leonellha Barreto Dillon graduated as a Chemical Engineer in Caracas, Venezuela. After pursuing a Master in Environmental Engineering at the Hamburg University of Technology, she gathered further knowledge and experience when she worked as Project Developer and Project Manager at the TTZ Bremerhaven, where she was responsible for the European Commission’s Funding Programmes. After pursuing her MBA, she is now responsible for training and coaching in the field of entrepreneurship and business strategy development at cewas.

Janek Hermann-Friede

Project manager and trainer | Tel. +49 (0)163 8776308

Janek is an environmental engineer with a post-graduate degree in international development cooperation. He has more than 10 years of work experience in water governance, private sector engagement and sustainable water management practices. Janek has worked on numerous projects in Latin America, Southern Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. He develops, trains and facilitates bottom-up solutions for key management, integrity and governance challenges in the water sector.

Aline Bussmann

Project Manager | Tel. +962790801872

Aline studied Geography, Political Science and Integrated Water Resources Management. She has worked as a project coordinator in the MENA region and Eastern Africa on different projects in the field of IWRM, transboundary water management, agricultural development and higher education in natural resources management. She has several years of experience as a freelancer, conducting seminars on water and food security and producing educational documentary films on water and energy resources management in the Middle East and Africa.

Hannah Wuzel

Project Manager - Lebanon


Hannah holds a MSc degree in Global Politics from the London School of Economics and Political Science and a BA in International Liberal Studies with a focus on International Relations and Political Science from Waseda University, Japan. In addition to several years of experience working in sustainable innovation and social entrepreneurship with a focus on capacity building with and for migrants, refugees and asylum seekers, Hannah has expertise in communications, advocacy and business development. As of 2018, she manages cewas Middle East’s activities in Lebanon.

Ruweida Aljabali

Project Support

Ruweida studied Architecture in Jordan and Technology and Resources Management with a focus on urban and regional management in Germany. She is keen to help promote innovation in the environmental sector in Jordan. At cewas Middle East, Ruweida provides general support and specifically in social media and communication.

Owice Hammad

Project Officer | Tel. +962-789-359-559

Owice holds a bachelor degree in Civil Engineering and a master’s degree in Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM). He has working experience in civil engineering, project management, and logistic support in various spheres. He also did research assisting in different projects ranging from sludge management to feminism. Owice is the founder of Turjumaa: a company that provides water and sanitation translation services. Alongside that, he supports cewas Middle East with its projects in Jordan specifically and in the region generally.

John Campbell

Financial Advisor and Mentor | Tel. +1-212-300-3375

John has studied international economics and business in college and graduate school and holds a BA, MA. He also has a MBA from Wharton. At Wharton he studied in Brussels and worked in the EU. Presently, he is an adjunct lecturer in finance at University College, Cork, Ireland where he teaches a seminar on banking and credit ratings.  John had a forty-year career on Wall Street with various financial firms in New York City and San Francisco. His primary area of expertise is the bond market. John is exploring the possibility of establishing an investment portfolio fund of the start –up businesses that have successfully completed the cewas training program in Palestine.

Anne Pazin Birdsong

Marketing Advisor and Mentor

Anne’s career over the last 45 years has included positions within domestic and international banking then, within the technology sector, Anne helped to grow a computer systems development company. With the Bank of America and the Bank of California, Anne managed branch operations, domestic and international compensation and national cash management accounts. Over the last 25 years, Anne cofounded a computer consulting company that provided full life cycle systems development to Fortune 500 companies across the United States. As Sales Manager, was responsible for over 500 computer professionals. Employee development included sales, marketing, systems development and career growth.