In Memory of Dr Sonia Heptonstall, Founding Member of the Alliance for Health Promotion

Sonia Heptonstall, Ph.D. :: Solar Cookers InternationalIt is with great sadness that we share with you the news of the passing away of Dr Sonia Heptonstall. Sonia succumbed to COVID-19 infection on March 19, 2020.

She, together with a few visionaries passionate about Health Promotion attended the WHO International Conference on Health Promotion held in Djakarta in 1997. Coming from the Conference they founded the NGO Advisory Group on Health Promotion, pre-cursor to the present-day Alliance for Health Promotion. Since then she has been a strong advocate for Health Promotion. She put a lot of time and effort to make the Alliance succeed. She was a selfless, warm-hearted friend and colleague. Until 2018 she was a Member of the Board.

Sonia was a dedicated human rights and women’s rights defender and an intellectual who was generous in sharing her knowledge and experience. In Geneva she represented Solar Cookers International (SCI) and Soroptimists.

She contributed in countless ways to the furtherance of women’s rights, employment, and health issues. She was co-founder and partner of ActInvest, a Swiss association focused on micro enterprise and entrepreneurship, particularly for women. Until recently she worked as Professor, International Relations at Geneva Business School.

For many years active in NGO CSW (Committee on the Status of Women) Geneva, Sonia was a key member of the task force “Celebrating Eleanor Roosevelt and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights” which resulted in a memorial to Eleanor Roosevelt being erected at Place des Nations in 2008. In work to fight harmful traditional practices, she helped in drafting the first WHO resolution on FGM (Female Genital Mutilation) and always strived to make civil society’s voice heard in international decision-making.

We will greatly miss her.

At this moment we would like to send Our sincere condolences to her husband John and her son Simon.

On behalf of the Alliance for Health Promotion

Source: Health Promotion Alliance