Announcing the 2016 Regional Fellows
We are thrilled to announce the selection of the 2016 Regional Fellows in East Africa, India and Pakistan. This year’s class of 64 Fellows represents a diverse global community of emerging leaders with the audacity to take on some of the most intractable problems of poverty and the determination to create a more inclusive world.
This year’s Fellows are innovating across sectors, geographies and disciplines from delivering affordable solar energy to households and small businesses, to unlocking the capacity of people with disabilities through sports, to designing creative platforms for enhancing education through art, and more. Get to know these extraordinary individuals and how they’re changing the world tackles poverty!
2016 EAST AFRICA REGIONAL FELLOWS:
Aaron is the co-founder and CEO of enjuba, a Uganda-based social enterprise that is empowering high-growth entrepreneurs to grow and sustain their businesses through access to credit and business development support. Enjuba is also empowering children in more than 700 schools in Uganda by improving their literacy skills and helping them develop key life skills through spelling bees. Aaron has been profiled by local and international media and has received several awards for his work. Based in Kampala, Uganda, Aaron is a fellow of MIT’s Global Startup Workshop and the London School of Economics’ Programme for African Leadership. He has graduate training in Business Model Innovation and Public Policy from the London School of Economics.
ANTHONY MUKUNDI KINYUA
Based in Nairobi, Kenya, Anthony is the Product Innovation and Commercialization Executive for Africa at d.light, a global social enterprise and Acumen investee that provides quality, affordable solar energy solutions for households and small business. Anthony has an array of professional experience in the fields of renewable energy, electrical engineering, innovation and product development. He holds a Bachelor degree in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from the Technical University of Kenya and is currently pursuing an M.A. in Energy Technology.
BILLENE SEYOUM WOLDEYES
Billene is a feminist blogger at www.africanfeminism.com and the cofounder of Setaweet, a feminist consciousness space based in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, committed to promoting gender consciousness through training and research that addresses gender inequality. Over the past two years, Billene has also been working on building leadership and institutional alignment capacities for “systems-shifting” projects and partnerships. She is the author of the book Transformative Spaces: Enabling Authentic Female Leadership through Self Transformation—The Case of AWiB and served as the President of the board of the Association of Women in Business (AWiB) in 2013. Billene holds a Master’s degree in Gender and Peace-Building and a second M.A in Peace, Security, Development and International Conflict Transformation.
DEMELASH BEKELE DEBERE
Demelash is the founder and executive director of Vision Community Based Rehabilitation Association (VCBRA). Based in Ethiopia’s Oromia Regional state, VCBRA is transforming the lives of more than 5000 people by improving the health, social and economic well-being of people with disabilities through providing comprehensive rehabilitation services and promoting access to Basic Health Care Services and Economic Benefits of Prisoners. Demelash currently serves as a board chair of a civil society consortium named Community Based Rehabilitation Network Ethiopia (CBRNE). Demelash holds an M.A. in Social Psychology.
Denis is the co-founder and Head of Programs at Vijana Corps, a youth-led, Uganda-based nonprofit organization that utilizes literacy, film and the opportunity to participate in civic society and debates as tools to empower marginalized youth. Vijana Corps’ programs serve 3,500 youth across northern Uganda, addressing poverty, illiteracy and human rights issues. Passionate about youth issues and social justice, Denis was one of 500 young people who sat in Jordan in August 2015 to write the Amman declaration on Youth Peace and Security. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Project Planning and Management from Makerere University, Uganda.
DERRICK MUTURI KINYUA
Derrick is from Nairobi, Kenya and is the founder and CEO of RabbitIQ, an online herd management platform that is evolving how commercial rabbit farmers breed, manage and market their livestock using data and analytics. By tracking each individual animal and communicating with farmers through the use of SMS and QR codes, RabbitIQ lets farmers know when to breed, when they should deliver, when to administer vaccines and more. It also enables farmers to access veterinarians on demand via live chat. Through RabbitIQ’s network, the platform also serves as a bridge for farmers to tap into bigger markets that they may not as individuals have access to. Derrick holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business and Information Technology from Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology as well as a diploma in Ethical Hacking from the Institute of Software Technologies in Nairobi.
Engidawork is the Regional Manager for Save Your Generation Ethiopia (SYGE) based in Addis Ababa. SYGE works with adolescents and youth on issues related to sexual reproductive health needs and the prevention of HIV/AIDS. In his role, Engidawork coordinates the USAID-funded MULU/MARPs HIV Prevention Project whose aim is to reduce the rates of new HIV infections among Most-At-Risk Populations (MARPs) through combination prevention approaches. He facilitates and provides trainings on peer-to-peer education, life skills development, and youth-centered communication strategies geared toward vulnerable populations in high schools, universities and out-of-school settings. Engidawork holds an M.A. in Sociology from Indira Gandhi National Open University.
Gervas is a social entrepreneur, gender activist and Senior Program Officer of the Hakizetu Young Women and Girls’ Rights Organization, a nonprofit based in Mwanza, Tanzania dedicated to promoting the safety, health and social protection of young women and girls as a preventative strategy against early pregnancies and forced marriages. He is also founder of the Economic Empowerment Program on poverty-reduction strategies for survivors of teenage motherhood and child marriage. Since its establishment in 2012, the program has supported more than 384 young women and girls through mentorship and with vocational training, entrepreneurship and market research skills. Gervas holds a B.A. in Philosophy from the University of Dodoma, Tanzania and has been listed among the Top 10 African Youth Philanthropists in 2015 by African Philanthropy Network.
JAMES NGANGA WARUIRU
James is from Kiambu, Kenya and is the co-founder and project manager of Fountain of Hope Life Center, a community-based organization that runs health support programs serving disadvantaged young women, the elderly and the visually impaired. James is especially passionate about empowering young women to attend school during their menstrual periods, and as a believer in sustainable community development, he established a small sewing center in order to make re-usable sanitary kits that are cost-effective, comfortable and 100 percent biodegradable. James desires to continue to be the male voice in the fight against the social stigma on menstruation in Africa and, to this effect, has authored and published several articles highlighting the problem. His program won second place in the 2010 “Out-of-the-Box” competition and was a participant in the 2013 Australian “TravelGiver Challenge.”
James is a Kenyan technologist and serial entrepreneur. Through LakeHub, the Kisumu-based technology innovation hub he is co-founder and director of, James has brought together the tech community of Western Kenya and built the region’s first co-working space. LakeHub exists to catalyze the growth of social innovation in Western Kenya by providing young entrepreneurs, developers and creatives in the region the resources they need to actively participate in the digital economy. A graduate of Maseno University with a BSc. in Computer Science, James is passionate about technology for development and committed to bridging the technology gap that exists between Africa’s big cities and rural communities.
Joseph is a Ugandan entrepreneur and the founder of Kawowo Sports, an online sports platform that publishes comprehensive and original content on local sports from around Uganda and East Africa. In founding Kawowo.com, now Uganda’s most popular online sports platform, Joseph sought to raise the profile of local sports while celebrating and promoting indigenous athletes, offering them exposure to a wider audience with the hopes of helping them attract financial support and sponsorship. Kawowo Sports is a division of Owino Solutions, a media and web development company that Joseph also founded. In December 2011, Owino received the Ericsson Young Achievers Award for his contributions to the Ugandan Information and Communications Technology Sector. Joseph is a self-taught tech enthusiast who through his numerous web services and digital communications platforms is dedicated to bringing African content online for all.
KANGABE BÉLISE HATEGEKA
Bélise is from Kigali, Rwanda and works at Laterite, a Kigali-based data, research and technical advisory firm dedicated to social and economic development and impact. As Laterite’s Data Manager, leads large quantitative and qualitative data collection efforts that contribute to the evaluation of policies and programs by providing honest evidence and insights drawn directly from international development program beneficiaries. Passionate about gender equality, she advocates for policy changes in favor of marginalized young girls and women by raising awareness of their challenges and promoting their rights and aspirations. Bélise holds a Bachelor’s degree in Social Sciences from Glasgow Caledonian University with a special focus on Politics and Sociology
Born to Rwandan parents, Linda is the co-founder and CEO of Haute Baso, an ethical fashion brand and social enterprise that uses fashion as a channel for investing vocational training, mentoring, employment and fostering entrepreneurship for young women in Rwanda. Her company works with 142 artisans from around the country to produce high-quality fashion apparel and accessories. The work she did on the design and production of pieces for the international retail chain Anthropologie strengthened Linda’s belief in the importance of showcasing Rwanda in the global market while empowering the country’s talented women. Linda has been featured on CNN’s African Startup and was part of Spring Accelerator’s 2015 cohort.
Millicent is the Head Teacher at Ng’iya Girls Boarding Primary School in Siaya County, Western Kenya. As head and patron of the school’s 4K club—the name for Kenya’s 4-H program—she works with students to build skills in agriculture, leadership and financial management through the club’s agricultural activities which include planting trees to replace those used for firewood and helping educate the surrounding community on sustainability and food security. Thanks to Millicent’s training as a teacher with a special focus on child psychology, she is well equipped for the work she leads with the club’s members who are primarily young, vulnerable girls. She holds a degree in Education from the University of Nairobi.
Musimbi is the Director of ZikoAfrika, a contemporary high-fashion accessories brand she co-founded with her sister. After working in the development field, Musimbi realized the growing importance of affecting lasting change through business. Her experience, coupled with a passion for fashion design, is woven throughout ZikoAfrika’s ethos and operations. The company aims to generate employment while promoting a positive image of the continent. The company works with a number of ethically-certified workshops to produce high-end products in Kenya, sourcing as many raw materials as possible from the country and surrounding region. Musimbi is a graduate of the School of Oriental and African studies, London.
Muthoni is an avid believer in the transformative power of finance and investment and the power of entrepreneurship to create positive socio-economic change. Based in Nairobi, Muthoni is a Senior Investment Manager at Schooner Africa Fund (SAF) in Kenya. SAF is an impact investment fund that strives to achieve measurable social and environmental impact and create wealth by investing in young, innovative startups, primarily in the agriculture sector. Over the past decade, Muthoni’s passion for impact investing and financial inclusion has led her to co-found two financial services organizations in Kenya that together have given first-time access to loans to more than 10,000 underserved individuals and small- and micro- enterprises. Muthoni holds a BSc. in Actuarial Science from Cass Business School, London.
Rekik is from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and is the co-founder of RK Renew Energy, a company that manufactures efficient, ceramic cook-stoves and solar lights for refugee camps. After only six months, RK Renew won a 2015 SEED Africa Award in the energy sector—a prestigious grant given to locally-led social and environmental start-ups in developing countries—and is currently a finalist in the World Bank-funded CIC Award. Her hope is that RK Renew Energy can provide improved cook-stoves at low prices to disadvantaged communities and ultimately foster better, more competitive local energy markets in East Africa. An Electrical Engineering graduate from Addis Ababa University, Rekik has worked as a renewable-energy consultant on various development and private-sector projects. She is a fellow of RENAC Germany, a board member of the Ethiopian Solar Association and, in addition to RK Renew Energy, runs her own sports tourism company and bakery co-op on the side.
ROMANA A. MBINYA
Romana is from Nairobi, Kenya and believes that everyone has a right to decent living. As a Senior Agricultural Officer working with the State Department of Agriculture, she works with rural agricultural projects that address issues such as sustainable livelihood development, food security and climate change. Romana is passionate about empowering and investing in women in agriculture and in education and sees her work as contributing to the achievement of the global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Romana holds a Master’s degree in Rural Systems Management from the University of Queensland and is a recipient of the Australian Leadership Award 2013.
SHALMALI RADHA KARNAD
Radha believes that every woman should view childbirth with joy rather than with fear of debt, disability or death. She is passionate about improving health systems to provide equitable access to high-quality healthcare for low-income women. As Clinical Director at 2020MCI, and formerly as the Clinical Programs Manager at Jacaranda Health, a new model for maternal and newborn health in East Africa, she is putting her skills and experience with global best practices in practice at the local level. Her focus on investigating and testing the use of technology in improving care, and creating sustainable systems for quality care delivery, is helping build new models for healthcare equality in East Africa. Radha is a medical doctor with an MPH in Health Systems Management from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
Suleiman is the creative and managing director of Impact Communication (ICM), an innovative communication company in Ethiopia that designs and implement social and behavior change communications and marketing campaigns to improve the lives of Ethiopians affected by poor hygiene, malnutrition and HIV/AIDS as well as other health and development related issues. Impact Communication has partnered with the Government of Ethiopia and international development organizations including UNICEF, UNAIDS, Merie Stops, Mercy Cops, SNV and WFP. A native of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Suleiman studied at Morgan State University and Savannah College of Art and Design.
A former banker from Kiambu, Kenya, Teresa is bridging the gap between incarceration and social reintegration in Kenya especially for female ex-convicts. She is the founder and Executive Director of Clean Start Solutions, a social enterprise that provides poor women and youth who have been incarcerated with employment opportunities and training programs that help reintegrate into society and break the cycle of poverty. Through her organization, she offers entrepreneurship training, character development and job placement to former inmates in order to encourage them to create profitable and legal enterprises that sustain them and their families over time. Her passion and commitment drives her to inspire generations of entrepreneurs to transcend the cycle of chronic poverty, “survival crimes” and incarceration. She hopes to expand her work and help cut Kenya’s high rates of recidivism while growing the country’s restorative justice programs.
Wanjiku is the Community Education Lead at the Path to Womanhood Foundation, a Kenya-based organization that empowers young women and girls through education. Wanjiku works with young girls from the Kenya’s Maasai community who have been rescued from early marriages or are at risk of becoming a victim of child marriage. Through Path to Womanhood and its partners, Wanjiku helps mentor and provide access to education for these young women with the intent to develop them into change agents who will not only influence their families and communities, but also serve as proof that the cycle of restrictive cultural practices can be broken. Wanjiku holds an M.Sc. in Public and Urban policy from University of Glasgow.
2016 INDIA REGIONAL FELLOWS:
Ajita is a researcher, practitioner and policy advocate for sustainable livelihoods and gender equality. She currently works as a consultant at UN Women focused on the economic rights of marginalized women. Previously, Ajita worked as a consultant at the Planning Commission, Government of India where she supported national and state projects on women’s development, handicrafts, and health. Ajita holds postgraduate degrees from SOAS, University of London, and the Institute of Rural Management Anand.
Anita is a Senior Program Officer at Rajiv Gandhi Mahila Vikas Pariyojana (RGMVP), an organization working for women’s empowerment and poverty reduction in Uttar Pradesh. She has ten years of experience working with organizations such as PRADAN, the Indian Ministry of Agriculture and the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) focused on the empowerment of women farmers. She received the Bharat Jyoti Award for a power weeder she designed which decreased manual labor for women farmers. Anita holds a Master’s in Engineering and Technology from Junagadh University, Gujarat.
Arhan leads the Alumni Impact Team at Teach For India (TFI), helping to enable its 1100-strong and growing teacher alumni network to catalyze a movement for educational equity in India. Arhan is leading TFI’s efforts to evolve the organization’s long-term strategy and develop programs in the areas of research, social innovation, and collective action. Arhan is a former Teach For India Fellow and holds a Master’s in International Education Policy from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
DILIP KUMAR PATTUBALA
Dilip is the founder of Sukhibhava, a Bangalore-based social enterprise providing affordable menstrual hygiene products and education to the urban poor. Sukhibhava has educated 10,000+ women in Bangalore, providing access to affordable sanitary pads for more than 7,200 women each month. Dilip previously worked with The Akshaya Patra Foundation, HelpAge India and Pollinate Energy. He holds a Master’s in International Social Welfare and Social Policy from Anglia Ruskin University.
Gopal is the co-founder of Youth4Jobs Foundation, a non-profit organization providing skills training and job placement to young people with disabilities across India. Since its founding in 2012, Youth4Jobs has grown to 20 training centers across ten states, provided skill training to more than 7,800 young people with disabilities and conducted more than 200 disability inclusion and sensitization workshops for corporate partners. From 2004-2010, Gopal worked with the Government of Andhra Pradesh to train 250,000 unemployed youth from rural and tribal areas. He holds a Master’s in Management from Osmania University in Hyderabad.
Koushik is the co-founder of SustainEarth, a social enterprise working towards increasing access to green energy in rural India by providing clean, affordable cooking gas. He is part of the core team that developed GauGas, an affordable and reliable biogas and biofertlizer system for dairy farmers. Koushik was a 2013 Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Villgro. He holds a Master’s of Technology in Renewable Energy Engineering from TERI University.
Lezo is the Chief Strategist at YouthNet, a non-profit organization working with youth to create an entrepreneurial ecosystem and promote jobs in Nagaland. He leads the “Impact 5000 by 18 Campaign,” a partnership with the Government of Nagaland to enhance the business skills and employability of 5,000 young people by 2018. He also manages Nagaland Job Center (NJC) which has helped over 700 youth secure jobs in the private sector in the last three years. He holds an MBA from London South Bank University and studied strategy at Harvard Business School.
Malathy is the State Coordinator for the SPARSH Centre for Participatory Learning leading the “Deepshikha: Building Young Futures” program supported by UNICEF and Barclays Bank. Deepshikha is building strong and sustainable networks of empowered women in India through a self-help group model. To date, they have enabled 89,000 adolescent girls and 35,000 young women access to life skills education, financial literacy and entrepreneurship development. She holds a Master’s in Habitat Policy and Practice from the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) and a postgraduate degree in Business Management from the Bharathidasan Institute of Management.
Manmohan is Program Director and Founding Member of Kaivalya Education Foundation (KEF), a social change organization committed to transforming quality public education in India by providing leadership training to school principals. KEF currently impacts 300,000 children in 1,500 schools under its School Leadership Development Program. Manmohan heads the Government Partnership and District Transformation Program which aims to improve learning levels of one million underprivileged children in the next three to five years. Manmohan is an Aspire Circle Fellow and holds a postgraduate diploma in Conflict Analysis and Peace-Building from Jamia Millia Islamia.
Neel leads product management & customer experience at Simpa Networks, a Delhi-based social enterprise focused on providing affordable solar energy products with financing to communities in rural India. To date, Simpa has reached more than 15,000 homes and small businesses in rural Uttar Pradesh. Neel works closely with Simpa’s customers to uncover the motivations and beliefs that drive adoption and designs products and services aligned with the needs of its consumers. He is a former Villgro Fellow and holds a Master’s degree in Design from the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur.
Padam is a Program Leader at Self-Reliant Initiatives through Joint Action (SRIJAN), a grassroots organization committed to promoting sustainable models of rural development in India through interventions in agriculture and natural resource management. Padam has helped over 10,000 resource poor women in rural India organize into self-help groups and access credit and critical public services. He holds a Master’s in Irrigation Water Management from Maharana Pratap University of Agriculture and Technology, Udaipur and studied Markets and Livelihoods at St. Francis Xavier University in Canada.
PARABAL PARTAP SINGH
Parabal is a founding member of Edumust, a non-profit focused on providing quality education to rural children in government primary schools in Punjab. Based in Parabal’s hometown of Jalandhar, Edumust takes a holistic approach to improving learning outcomes by designing school-based health programs and unique learning interventions. Parabal is a Dalai Lama Fellow and holds a BA dual-degree in Economics and International Relations from Stanford University.
Poulomi works at Godrej Consumer Products Limited, focused on creating strategic partnerships with NGOs and skills development agencies with a particular focus on women’s empowerment. She heads the Godrej Salon-I program which has provided 54,000 women in 23 states across India access to jobs. Poulomi brings ten years of experience designing unique livelihoods interventions, entrepreneurship modules, and mobile facilitation tools to drive impact. She holds a postgraduate degree in Communications and Media Studies from the Mudra Institute of Communications.
Shashank is Co-Lead at Youth Alliance of India, a Delhi-based non-profit organization which aims to nurture empathetic leaders who apply their head, heart and hands to understand the world and drive change. At Youth Alliance, Shashank conducts ethical leadership and experiential learning programs for young people across India designed to raise awareness of careers in social impact and develop social change leaders across sectors. To date, Youth Alliance has mentored more than 300 young people. Shashank holds a Bachelor’s in Commerce from Hindu College, Delhi University.
SHRAVAN KUMAR JHA
Shravan is co-founder of I-Saksham Education and Learning Foundation a non-profit organization dedicated to improving access to quality education in the most remote and conflict-affected communities in Bihar. I-Saksham equips local youth with the training and technology necessary to become qualified tutors of state level curriculum in their communities. Shravan is a Prime Minister Rural Development Fellow with four years of experience in the microfinance sector at Samhita and SKS Microfinance Limited. He holds an MBA in Agribusiness from Symbiosis Institute of Business Management and B.Sc. in Agriculture from Banaras Hindu University.
SHRUTHI RANGANATH IYER
Shruthi leads the teacher training at Hippocampus Learning Centres, a Bangalore-based social enterprise focused on improving early childhood education in rural India by empowering women to teach curriculum in their local communities. In her current role, Shruthi manages a team of trainers who equip more than 500 rural women with the skills to deliver quality education in classrooms and centers. Shruthi began her career at Infosys Technologies before becoming a Teach for India Fellow in 2012. She holds a Bachelor of Engineering in Computer Science from Visvesvaraya Technological University.
Srikanth is the founder of Eye Kendra, a Telangana-based health care initiative focused on curing needless blindness across India. Eye Kendra partners with hospitals to leverage existing infrastructure to screen, evaluate and treat low-income patients across a spectrum of curable eye diseases. Srikanth also volunteers as an ophthalmologist at Landour Community Hospital which caters to more than 30 villages in the Gharwal District of Uttarakhand. Srikanth is from Hyderabad and holds a Master’s in Ophthalmology from Osmania Medical College in Hyderabad.
Ullas is Vice-President of Education Operations at Meghshala (“Cloud School”), an education non-profit using cloud technology to equip teachers with the skills needed to democratize quality education and create values driven learning spaces. Currently, Meghshala impacts more than 100 teachers in Karnataka. Prior to Meghshala, Ullas worked at Infosys and Google. He is a Teach For India Fellow and holds a Bachelor of Engineering in Telecommunications Engineering from Sir Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya Institute of Technology.
Vini works at Bihar Rural Livelihoods Promotion Society (BRLPS), a poverty alleviation program focused on improving access to social services for the rural poor by strengthening community-based institutions. At BRLPS, she helps enable self-help groups gain access to formal financial services. Previously, Vini served as a block project manager at BRLPS leading a team of 15 people facilitating credit access, livelihoods promotion and capacity building for more than 900 SHGs across Bihar. She holds a Master’s in Environment Management from the Indian Institute of Forest Management.
Vishishta is a consultant at the World Bank Education Global Practice Unit. She recently completed a two-year consultancy with the National Skill Development Agency (NSDA), where she focused on establishing national policy and projects linked to recognizing the prior learning of individuals, especially in the informal sector. She holds a degree in Bachelor of Laws from the University of Kerala and a Master’s in Development Management from London School of Economics.
2016 PAKISTAN REGIONAL FELLOWS:
Daniyal is the Operations and Organizational Development Manager at Special Olympics Pakistan (SOP), which transforms the lives of people with intellectual disabilities through the power of sports and by conducting health, leadership, and awareness programs. After volunteering at SOP for nine years in various capacities, ranging from coaching to leading the Youth Activation Program, Daniyal has now joined SOP full-time and is passionate about bringing a positive change. He aims to build structure and partnerships in the organization. Daniyal is from Karachi, but likes to spend his time across different parts of the country, and holds a Bachelor in Business Administration from IBA.
MOHAMMAD SAAD ARSHAD
Saad works at Adam Smith International through Punjab Education Sector Program II (PESP II) as their field consultant. The project provides technical assistance to the province’s government and designs reforms targeted towards improving both access and quality of education. It directly impacts close to 10,000,000 students studying in nearly 55,000 public schools in Punjab and envisions making a positive social and economic contribution to the country. At PESP II, Saad is personally responsible for designing, delivering, and leading initiatives in four districts of Sargodha division, and for providing direct support to all the respective district education managers. Saad is from Chakwal and holds a bachelor’s degree from LUMS.
Qasim is the founder and managing director of The History Project (THP), an initiative that introduces children in their formative years to the concepts of identity, history, and the danger of viewing the world from a 2-D lens. THP’s innovative method juxtaposes textbook versions of shared national histories and produces its own publications and curriculum to empower students to ask questions and study all sides of a story before forming their opinions. A former Tedx speaker and Laureate Global fellow, Qasim started his first company at the age of 21 and is a partner at Arbisoft.
ERFAAN HUSSEIN BABAK
Erfaan is the founder and Director of The Awakening, a right based organization that works for the protection and promotion of human rights especially focusing on the women, religious minorities, and transgender communities of Malakand Division. Since patriarchy is prevalent in these rural areas, the organization works to include men through support groups that are organized in various districts. Erfaan holds a master’s degree in International Relations.
Maryam is the co-founder and Director of Pakistan International Mountain Film Festival, a platform for spreading awareness, reviving independent filmmaking, and recognizing the unsung mountain porters in Pakistan. She also recently founded the Pakistan Institute for Youth, Artists and Research, which is focused on providing the underprivileged with opportunities and social integration through arts and culture. A unique part of the program includes a mobile film theater for slums and underserved areas. Maryam also freelances as a graphic designer and is interested in making films. She holds a Master in Multimedia Arts from National College of Arts Lahore and a Bachelors in Computer Sciences.
Saad is the Innovation & Community Lead at Invest2Innovate (i2i), which engages young entrepreneurs and provides them with resources and support to build their businesses and create positive change. He is also the founder and Director of Digital Empowerment Initiative. Much of Saad’s work has been about using digital platforms and networks to create opportunities for entrepreneurs and building communities to create scalable and measurable impact. Saad is an active member of the TEDx community where he serves as Senior TEDx Ambassador to the region as licensee and curator of TEDxIslamabad. Saad is also a part of the Advisory Council for Global Shapers Community by World Economic Forum.
Osman Haneef is the CEO and Managing Director of MILVIK Mobile Pakistan (Pvt.) Ltd., a subsidiary of Milvik AB (“BIMA”), the world’s leading micro-insurance organization with over 18 million subscribers and operations in 14 countries. Osman oversaw the development and launch of MILVIK’s first product and operations in Pakistan, where he leads a team of 250 employees. He is the recipient of several awards, including the Yale University Fox Fellowship, the Oxford University Frank Allen Bullock Prize for creative writing, the Overbrook Fellowship, and the Brady-Johnson Grand Strategy Travel and Research Award. Osman graduated with an MBA and an MA in International Relations from Yale University in 2011.
Asghar has very closely seen the struggles of tribal communities in Balochistan and is working to overcome these problems through promoting education in these areas. He is the founder of DEWA Foundation, which advocates and builds schools in the rural areas of Balochistan. Asghar holds an MBA from BUITEMS Quetta.
Faisal is the c0-founder and CEO at Peshawar 2.0, a social enterprise that aims to foster the startup ecosystem in Peshawar. It began with startup evangelism in the dense cluster of 13 campuses and has now rolled out flagship projects like the NXTGEN Winter Camp, Digital Youth Summit, and ArtTech Festival. Faisal also sits on the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) IT Board, the Science and Technology Advisory Committee at the Government of KP and the KP Higher Education Research Endowment Fund. As a biologist, Faisal is very passionate about the future of the biotech industry in Pakistan. He is the founding Director of the Institute of Integrative Bioscience, CECOS University, Peshawar and holds a master’s degree and a doctorate from the University of Oxford.
Dr. Sara is the co-Founder of doctHERs, a novel healthcare marketplace focused on establishing an enhanced 2.0 version of technology-enabled healthcare delivery. It aims to promote workforce inclusion of home-based female physicians by providing quality affordable healthcare to the underprivileged via telemedicine. DoctHERs has won notable awards such as CRDF Global, Ashoka Changemakers, GIST Tech- I, ISIF Asif and the MIT Enterprise Forum Pakistan Awards. It has been part of two well-known accelerators: Invest2Innovate and Unreasonable Institute. Sara resides in Karachi and completed her MBBS from DOW University. Currently, she is enrolled in the Health Policy Management Programme at The Aga Khan University.
MOHSIN ALI MUSTAFA
Dr. Mohsin manages strategy for health ventures at The Aman Foundation. This position has allowed him to engage at all levels of healthcare delivery within Pakistan, and develop a particular interest in sustainable market-based health solutions for the middle of the pyramid in emerging markets. Mohsin graduated from the Aga Khan University and chose to pursue public health and healthcare management after some introspection for the scale of impact that this field allows. He is a 2015 Asia 21 Young Leader and is passionate about disaster-management, politics and the outdoors.
HIRA BATOOL RIZVI
Hira is a Fulbright Scholar and a graduate of Georgia Tech, where she studied Science & Technology Policy, and co-founded She`Kab, a technology platform that connects female riders to drivers by intelligent clustering and matching. By providing safe, reliable, and affordable transport solutions, She`Kab aims to foster empowerment. The company generates employment opportunities for drivers, eases transportation woes facing the riders, and lowers gender disparity in the workforce. Hira has held various leadership positions in Pakistan and at her alma mater in the US, and she strongly believes that empowering women and girls to lead is crucial for a society to progress.
MUHAMMAD OWAIS RANA
Muhammad Owais Rana is the Director at The Citizens Archive of Pakistan (CAP), a non-profit dedicated to cultural and historic preservation and educational outreach. At CAP, Owais is spearheading The Oral History Project, South Asia’s largest private archival venture that has amassed interviews of over 1,800 partition survivors and 74,000 historical images. He is also leading Exchange for Change, the world’s largest Track-II diplomacy project between India and Pakistan, which has connected over 12,000 students in a cross-border sustained dialogue. He is a passionate public speaker and has represented Pakistan and his alma mater at 35 national and international platforms. Owais holds an MBA from the Lahore School of Economics.
SHEHRBANO RAZA RIZVI
Shehrbano is the COO of Popinjay, an ethical fashion label that trains and employs female artisans in Punjab. Previously, she served as Research Coordinator at Akhuwat, Pakistan’s largest interest-free microfinance institute where she led the core team that initiated and developed the Akhuwat Internship & Leadership Program and Akhuwat Clothes Bank. Prior to moving back to Pakistan, Shehrbano worked on the Resource Development team at IDRF in Toronto and has worked with Pakistan’s permanent mission to the UN in Geneva. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies from York University, and an International Baccalaureate Diploma from the United World Colleges.
Maha is a Research Associate at the Procurement Efficiency Project leading the analysis and the project roll-out of an economic experiment that aims to motivate bureaucrats in higher education, health, agriculture and works department to make optimal and efficient financial decisions. Maha has worked with the Sindh Education Reforms Project and Systems Approach for Better Education Results at World Bank. She has a master’s degree in Economics from Duke University and is a resident of Lahore. She is also engaged in mentoring and judging social enterprises both locally and globally and is currently piloting a local scholarship fund for public universities.
Irum works on the social health protection initiative Waseela-e-Sehet initiated by Government of Pakistan, which is in line with the Pakistan Medium Term Development Framework. The project is aimed at reducing healthcare spending by poor households through effective hospitalization insurance. Irum remains engaged with the design, development, and delivery of the prototype BISP Social health protection initiative taken up by the Government of Pakistan. Recently she has been appointed the Director of The Board of Directors, Waste Management Authority, Punjab, by the Chief Minister of Punjab. She is also amongst the public health experts working on developing Pakistan’s first system of health accounts.
KHIZR IMRAN TAJAMMUL
Khizr is the founder of Jaan Pakistan – a social enterprise researching and producing affordable energy solutions for low-income communities across Pakistan. Jaan Pakistan won the Rwanga Social Startup Competition at the fifth One Young World summit last year and is currently working on introducing solar cookstoves to urban slums in Lahore. In October 2015, Khizr launched a mobile app for second hand goods, Sparklist. Khizr also regularly writes for various publications.
Leena moved back to Pakistan after being educated in Canada five years ago for the purpose of making a positive contribution towards society. She had the opportunity to join Engro, a company already working in sectors that are integral to the nation’s economic growth. Currently, her work involves enhancing the livelihoods of small rural rice and wheat farmers, diversity through the inclusion of women in engineering trades and the dairy sector, driving the primary education initiative in Engro-adopted schools, and exploring entrepreneurial possibilities for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises.
Rahmatullah is a law graduate who grew up observing poverty, disease, and unemployment in his surroundings and even in his home at Matiari in Sindh. To create positive change in this area, he founded Villages Improvement and Society Welfare Association (VISWA), which aims to spread awareness of rights and social development in rural areas. Under his leadership as Executive Director, VISWA has trained many youth, women, peasants, labor and religious minorities on human rights, democracy, organizational management and peace. VISWA has been running four schools benefiting 400 rural students especially girls, and constructed 150 hand pumps and 150 latrines benefiting 23000 residents of remote rural areas.
Karim Ullah works as Value Chain Specialist at Aga Khan Rural Support Programme (AKRSP) Pakistan. As a development practitioner, Karim is working to contribute to inclusive and equitable economic development in Gilgit-Baltistan and Chitral regions (GBC). He is working to develop and upgrade high return value chains and to integrate smallholder farmers and producers. Previously as the Regional Manager at AKRSP Gilgit, he implemented innovative programs with outreach to thousands of youth through technical skills development, and promotion of entrepreneurial capacities and culture in collaboration with private and public academic institutions within and outside GBC. He graduated from LUMS with a degree in economics and politics in 2010.
SYED MUHAMMAD OVAIS YAZDANI
Ovais is Director at White House Grammar School, a network of schools established in 1981 that follow a social entrepreneurship model with a majority of students receiving financial assistance. Ovais also founded Edstram, to help educational organizations create value while maximizing their social impact. Additionally, Edstram develops the skills and abilities of individuals to foster personal and societal progress. Ovais is from Karachi and holds a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Mathematics from LUMS and an master’s degree in Management of Training and Development in Education from the University of Edinburgh.
Haya left a promising career as a corporate lawyer to work at the Legal Aid Office (LAO), a quasi-governmental agency, which provides legal aid and representation to underprivileged pre-trial prisoners in Sindh. She is also the Program Director at the Legal Aid Society, an NGO that works to enhance legal empowerment of marginalized communities through raising awareness of legal rights and remedies and enhancing capacity of state actors to respond to these communities. Haya studied law at London’s Global University (UCL) and completed her Bar Vocational Course from City Law School in London.