As a way to promote the incredible work our Host Organizations are doing and to spread the word of the substantial impact Atlas Corps Fellows has on their teams. Today, we are sharing a story of Evidence Action and their experience with an Atlas Corps Fellow Kayode (Class 39, Nigeria).

Host Organization: Evidence Action

Dedicated to enriching lives and reducing poverty throughout Africa and Asia, Evidence Action is a nonprofit organization that bridges research and pilot interventions with institutionalized programs in order to determine the most cost-effective and evidence-based interventions. 

Fellow Supervisor: Michael Kinsella

At Atlas Corps, we have a tradition of stating our “Five Facts” when introducing ourselves to new people. What are your five facts?

Name: Michael Kinsella


Hometown: I’ve called Washington D.C. home for 25 years

Role at Organization: Associate Director, IT

Social Issue/Interest Area: Leveraging technology to increase impact at all levels for all peoples

Fun fact: As an avid dog lover, everyone I work with at Evidence Action knows my dog’s name, Pancake.

Why did you decide to host an Atlas Corps Fellow?

Evidence Action is a globe spanning organization with staff from many cultures and backgrounds. After learning about Atlas Corps and their mission, we knew that having a Fellow who is ready to learn and put their experience to work, as well as being aware of and ready to navigate cultural and regional differences resonated with our values.

Why did you choose Kayode as your Atlas Corps Fellow?

Kayode’s demonstrated experience and personal achievement aligned well with the technology and operations projects that we wanted his Fellowship to focus on. His interview process confirmed he was able to effectively communicate and would be a valuable addition to the team. 

Global Operations Team Retreat Happy Hour

How has Kayode contributed to your team? How has his presence had an impact on your team’s dynamic?

Kayode’s presence allowed Evidence Action to adapt to the changes that COVID brought, including increasing our remote cybersecurity and governance processes.

How will your Fellow’s contributions and insights impact your organization in the long run?

Kayode’s work towards supporting IT system security standards and IT governance processes will remain with Evidence Action for years to come. When Kayode first joined the organization, many aspects of the role of IT within the organization were still murky, but with his help, the team has increased visibility and clarity on the role of IT.

What has Kayode taught you? Have you learned anything special about his culture?

While working remotely, Kayode has shared details about his home, family life, and also the traffic in Lagos! Kayode also shared cloths and gifts whenever he was able to join us in D.C. These are just a sampling of what Kayode has brought to the team.

Team Lunch

Fellow: Kayode (Class 39, Nigeria)

At Atlas Corps, we have a tradition of stating our “Five Facts” when introducing ourselves to new people. What are your five facts?

Name: Kayode Yussuf


Hometown: Lagos Island, Lagos

Role at Organization: Global IT Fellow

Social Issue/Interest Area: Internet security, online privacy, and IT capacity building

Fun fact:  I have traveled throughout Europe by road and I have also visited the Demilitarized Zone between North and South Korea.

What is your role at your Host Organization?

I support the development and maintenance of a run-book for IT Operational policy, the management of the IT Helpdesk, and the cascading organizational IT security requirements and governance processes down to the organization’s presence in the African region. I also design, implement, and test system and data security improvements across cloud platforms, as well as test and implement two-factor authentication for IT assets. My support towards the ‘Business Continuity Plan’ and ‘Disaster Recovery’ has also ensured resiliency in operations.

How is your experience with your Host Organization impacting your perspective? 

My Host Organization gave me the opportunity to manage some of the critical processes in the IT unit, such as reviewing their cyber security readiness and recommending steps to mitigate data loss. I also learned how to work with people from different cultures. By working at a global organization, I had the opportunity to work with people in Africa, Asia and the U.S., which exposed me to diversity and learning about cultures, languages, holidays and families across the globe.

Match with the Evidence Action Team at National Stadium

How has your experience with your supervisor impacted your perspective? 

I enjoyed working and learning from Mike. He is an awesome supervisor because he projects himself first as a friend and then as a supervisor, which makes it easier to relate with him. He patiently listens to me, points out where he feels I have made errors, and also makes me feel proud by commending my thoughtfulness. 

One regret I have is not joining Mike for his wedding trip to Ireland. They had such picturesque photos, but unfortunately COVID has made traveling so difficult.

How will you build upon the skills and knowledge gained during your Fellowship once you return to your home country?

My experience in the United States has taught me the importance of partnerships. While working at Evidence Action, I have seen how partnerships between individuals, organizational units, and organizations can bring value to both parties. I will apply this immeasurable lesson as I continue to pursue my future goals.

I also learned about workflow and IT project management while gaining the hands-on experience with some of the tools deployed at Evidence Action. Once I return to my home country, I believe I will have the opportunity to work as a consultant by deploying the skills I have learned at Evidence Action.

Lunch with colleagues

More about Atlas Corps

Atlas Corps partners with mission-driven organizations (nonprofit, private, and government) to facilitate a professional exchange program for the world’s best emerging social change leaders to live and serve in the United States for a 12-month Fellowship. The Atlas Corps network currently includes more than 1,100 professionals from 110 countries who have served at 300 organizations.

Interested in becoming a Host Organization for an Atlas Corps Fellow? Fill out Host Interest Form.

Photos from Evidence Action’s personal archive