Soumashree SenIndia (AIF Banyan Impact Fellow, Host: Women's World Banking)
Soumashree brings over six years of expertise in diplomacy, strategic partnerships, and policy advocacy, with a strong focus on advancing gender equality and inclusive governance. She graduated Cum Laude with a Bachelor’s degree from Tata Institute of Social Sciences and secured a 100% academic scholarship as a Global UGrad-Fulbright Scholar from the U.S. Department of Education. She has been nominated to represent India at international forums, including the Asian Development Bank, VSO UK, and Plan International. As a Governance and Strategy consultant at the Chief Minister’s Office in Kolkata, she specializes in establishing strategic partnerships and driving policy reforms to advance inclusive governance. A notable accomplishment is the implementation of a state-level grievance redressal system, enhancing bureaucratic accountability and empowering citizens through improved public service delivery and participatory democracy, fortifying government-citizen cooperation. She has collaborated closely with senior political figures across 11 Ministries, including Members of Parliament and Members of Legislative Assembly to devise effective strategies and crafted policies that leveraged communication channels to convey compelling value propositions to the electorate. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Soumashree collaborated with Samhita, an impact consultancy, playing a pivotal role in building strategic partnerships for REVIVE, a multi-stakeholder platform dedicated to empowering women economically through blended finance and technical support. Notable partners include Google, MSDF, Atlantic Council, and JPAL. Previously, she worked at Aangan Trust, where she focused on child rights advocacy and creating safe spaces for women and children. She collaborated with the communications team to execute successful social media campaigns, raising awareness around trafficking and child harm.Soumashree aspires to advance the cause of gender equality and promote inclusive governance through impactful policy changes and partnership-building initiatives.
Host Organization: Women’s World Banking
Role at Host Organization: As a Strategy and Stakeholder Management Fellow, Soumashree will work closely with the Head of the Brand, Marketing & Communications (BMC) team and also engage with the team on specific projects and initiatives that are instrumental to (1) enhance WWB’s external brand awareness and to internally (2) strengthen the BMC position as an expert strategic advisor and quality focused execution partner to the whole organization partner to the broader organization including senior management. The Fellow will also support the review and refinement of the current brand and marketing strategy, as well as to work with the team on the internal stakeholder engagement model to developing effective and efficient collaboration processes.
Sharifah MwajabuUganda (Host: Global Fairness Initiative)
Sharifah is a monitoring and evaluation practitioner with over ten years of experience in implementing and managing emergency response, developmental and social impact programs while working with non-profit, international, and private sector organizations in and outside Uganda. She has an Economics and Statistics degree from Kyambogo University, a Postgraduate Diploma in Monitoring and Evaluation and pursuing a Master of Arts in International Relations at Liverpool John Moores University in United Kingdom. Recently worked with ChildFund International’s Global operations unit as Lead Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning Advisor under the Come Play with Me Project implemented in Brazil, Honduras, Ethiopia, and Uganda aimed promoting playful parenting and COVID-19 practices amongst caregivers of children 0-8years. Over 60% of caregivers had increased playful practices and understood their role in children’s development, with higher recorded frequencies in playing with toys/games, reading a book or story book, sing songs with their child compared to the baseline period. 98% of caregivers could identify more than three practices to lessen the severity of COVID-19. While working with War Child Canada, she worked closely with Curriculum Development Centre during the development of the Accelerated Education Program curriculum for Lower secondary and piloted a roll-out project targeting out-of-school dropouts and refugees (16-35+yrs) youth in Adjumani district, Uganda. 83% of the 3,500 enrolled learners successfully graduated with the necessary competencies and scores to join the formal education program, 56% of the youth had been trained in life skills and vocational livelihood ventures and with 20% of them operating their small-scale enterprises.
Host Organization: Global Fairness Initiative
Role at Host Organization: As a Project Management Fellow, Sharifah will support GFI’s work to improve the working and economic condition of workers in the informal sector in multiple counties in Africa. The Fellow will support the Tunisia-based Regional Director and the US-based Program Manager to manage program activities and grant management of 2 separate initiatives in 6 counties. The Fellow will walk away with technical grant and management skills, including budget tracking and
project reporting, partner management, performance and project monitoring, and foundational knowledge on issues related to livelihood development and decent work for working poor communities in the informal economy.
Nitisha PandeyIndia (AIF Banyan Impact Fellow, Host: Women's World Banking)
Nitisha is a gender justice advocate and a communications professional with eight years of experience in project management and social media marketing in the nonprofit sector. A computer science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate and moved to the impact space with the motivation to do meaningful work and the need for job satisfaction. During her Post Graduation from Indian School of Development Management, she became passionate about gender equality and developed a bias for action in her personal life. She identifies as an evolving feminist and is actively working towards a future where all women and girls can fulfil their potential. She currently leads the Adolescent Girls Empowerment Program at the country level in Nomi Network which is impacting the lives of 500+ girls in three states of India at risk of child marriage, child labor and, school dropout which results in exploitation and trafficking of girls. In her role, Nitisha has designed the program strategy and life skills curriculum which empowers girls from vulnerable communities to make decisions about their life and career while also being active voices of change in their communities. Previously, Nitisha has worked as a fundraising professional with CARE India and Indian School of Development Management working with corporates, institutions and, individuals. As a proactive person with excellent management, communication and networking skills, Nitisha has a knack for thriving in fast paced environments. As a trained menstrual heath educator and sustainability advocate, Nitisha has facilitated over multiple trainings on sustainable menstruation directly engaging with more than 700 people. With a determination to improve the health of all women and girls, Nitisha founded The Bloody Feminist on Instagram where she creates purposeful communication to educate young people to feel confident and have control of their own bodies.
Host Organization: Women’s World Banking
Role at Host Organization: As a Marketting and Social Media Fellow, Nitisha will develop social media content, create compelling and meaningful media graphics, track and report on performance metrics using data and social listening to identify industry trends and cultivate peers, partners and other key stakeholders activities.The Fellow will engage with the team to support on a range of activities including the production of marketing materials, updating reports and presentations, conducting relevant research on industry trends and relevant event/speaking engagement opportunities.
Adriana MangonesColombia (Host: American Red Cross)
Adriana is a researcher from Cartagena de Indias, Colombia, with eight years of experience in the non-profit and international cooperation sector. She earned a Master ‘s in Communication from Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, as well as a B. A. in Sociology from Universidad Nacional de Colombia. Her work has been focused on the development of monitoring and evaluation tools of different types of public policy directed to vulnerable people and groups for nearly a decade. She has knowledge and experience of intercultural communication, particularly in relation to the ethnic and gender approaches for the attention and reparation of conflict victims.
Adriana has developed participatory tools and other research methodologies for the assessment of public policy that broadly fits into development and more specifically into peacebuilding and transitional justice. Through her experience in international aid, especially OIM, MSI, and FAO, where she has worked with topics as varied as rehabilitation and satisfaction measures, climate change, ethnic justice, public health, land restitution and food security, she has engaged with different conflict-affected regions.
Adriana has volunteered as a support link in the Colombian Red Cross during emergency situations, such as floods and earthquakes, in the Caribbean region and is trained in first aid assistance. Through these experiences, she developed strong research and communication skills in widely varied cultural contexts, allowing her to quickly develop rapport while implementing projects on the field. Adriana enjoys focusing on research with communities for peace building and policymaking, and has a passion for advocating for human rights and women empowerment.
Host Organization: American Red Cross
Role at Host Organization: As a Research and Engagement Fellow, Adriana will work under the Knowledge Management Program Manager to conduct and coordinate research and learning activities of the Global Disaster Preparedness Center (GDPC). The fellow will gain hands-on experience in qualitative and quantitative research activities relating to disaster preparedness and cutting-edge technology innovations, as well as knowledge management, information dissemination, and learning outcomes. In addition, the fellow will assist with outreach and engagement with Red Cross and Red Crescent National Societies and external partners to help raise the profile of GDPC’s work. An interest in and basic knowledge of disaster preparedness and international humanitarian assistance is essential and experience working in or with the Red Cross is preferred. Our fellows work alongside us as integrated members of the GDPC to carry out professional level work in a supervised atmosphere.
Tarita Roy ChoudhuryIndia (AIF Banyan Impact Fellow, Host: Collaborating for Resilience (CoRe))
Tarita is a climate activist and an experienced program manager and researcher with over five years of professional experience in research, program development and management, and operations in the nonprofit sector. She completed an accelerated degree program from Drexel University, receiving her Bachelor’s in Environmental Studies & Sustainability and Master’s in Urban Strategy simultaneously. Over the past three years, Tarita has worked on climate and gender justice programming with a global focus. Her work in the nonprofit sector has allowed her to develop a keen sense of social justice issues in our societies, and she focuses on taking an intersectional and participatory community approach to solutions. She complements her background in environmental and urbanism projects with international experience working with diverse communities on climate, resilience and adaptation, and practical knowledge and training. Tarita has developed skills in grassroots organizing, working with youth, and using tools such as power and community mapping, climate vulnerability analyses, and participatory community engagement projects. Having lived in major cities globally, Tarita has worked with underrepresented and Global South communities and can offer a unique perspective based on insight, lived experience, and expertise on the climate crisis, urbanism, and intersectionality.
Host Organization: Collaborating for Resilience (CoRe)
Role at Host Organization: As a Strategy and Partnerships Fellow, Tarita will gain experience in principles of multi-stakeholder dialogue to promote citizen engagement in policy reform and implementation. The Fellow will apply these principles in the development and implementation of several international partnerships. The Fellow will design and manage partner collaborations and undertake action research in one or more program areas, and lead analyses focused on outcome monitoring, learning and evaluation to support strategy development and organizational expansion. Tarita will also help support action research and learning systems that build the capacity of civil society partners to drive governance innovations, distil insights from comparative analysis of outcomes across different partnership sites working towards systems change, and communicate lessons for policy and practice.
Indrias RosmeifindaIndonesia (Host Org: Women's World Banking)
Indrias has a total of seven years of experience in the development and humanitarian sectors. She recently worked as a Social and Behavior Change Officer at UNICEF Indonesia where she managed a total budget of US$ 190,000 for four Risk Communications and Community Engagement (RCCE) projects in South Sulawesi and Maluku, Indonesia, to implement behavior change communications strategies and demand creation for COVID-19 vaccination through capacity building for healthcare workers, teachers, parents/caregivers, community and religious leaders, journalists, and youth. Finda earned her Master’s degree in Children, Youth and International Development from Brunel University London and her Bachelor’s of Science in Physics from the University of Indonesia. During her studies in London, Finda did an internship at StreetInvest, a nonprofit working on the issues of street children in West Africa, East Africa and India, where she supported the production of Impact Reports for StreetInvest for 2019/2020 term by reviewing and analyzing data collected at projects in Kenya. Prior coming to the UK, Finda worked as an Advocacy and Partnership Officer at the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization Center for Early Childhood Care and Education and Parenting (SEAMEO CECCEP), where she designed, planned, and implemented advocacy and partnership strategies on Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE). She also liaised and built partnerships with 11 Ministries of Education in Southeast Asia and a range of other organizations such as UNESCO, Plan International, and Aide et Action. Finda is passionate in the topics of children education and women empowerment.
Host Organization: Women’s World Banking
Role at Host Organization: As a Policy Advocacy Fellow, Indrias will help accelerate the policy advocacy process at the Women’s World Banking, assisting in delivering parts of the policy and advocacy strategy and goals set for the next five years. The Fellow will engage withpolicymakers and regulators in the area of women’s financial inclusion and encourage them to make changes where needed to improve the enabling policy environment for women’s economic empowerment. The Fellow will work on projects from different countries, particularly in the Women’s World Banking’s focus countries of Cambodia, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Nigeria, and Vietnam. The Fellow will also draw together from the organization’s existing work, build further the policy positions, and advocate to new audiences, which will be very beneficial to Women’s World Banking.
Ifrah Faiz has 10 years’ experience in the development sector and has a Master’s degree in development studies. She currently works as a service administrator with a resettlement agency. Her work involves providing resources for refugees, asylum seekers, and other new arrivals to the U.S. to assist with their integration into their new community. Previously, Ifrah worked with the UNHCR and was involved in Refugee Status Determination. She headed the United Nations Women’s project. Her work included gender related policies, conducting and organizing trainings, engendering disaster phases, advocating for female Internally Displaced People in the camps. Prior to that, she worked in Afghan Commissionerate, where she designed a database and analyzed results of a household survey of all the Afghan Refugee Camps in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. This provided data to specifically address the needs of men, women and children related to water, sanitation, health, education and protection. Ifrah started her career in the Pakistan Air Force as a General Duty Pilot. She is a proficient solo pilot with experience on K-8 and MFI-17 aircrafts. She is the first female from PAF’s GD(P) branch to have done Para-trooping. In November 2014 she got a opportunity to participate in the prestigious Emerging Leaders of Pakistan Fellowship in USA, in 2016 she was selected by as Queen’s Young Leader highly commended runner-up and she is also a 2020-2021 Asia Foundation Development Fellow. She is particularly interested in refugee case management, women empowerment, humanitarian relief and leadership.
Huma Halepoto is a Karachi-based development sector specialist working on the project of the World Bank with the Government of Sindh. She has vast experience of more than 12 years working in the field of the Development Sector. She has worked primarily on World Bank Projects across the country. She did her Masters and Bachelor’ degrees in Social Sciences from the Shah Abdul Latif University, Sindh. Her current job encompasses the implementation of social aspects defined by WB to safeguard the social aspects. She also worked as Capacity Building Manager in BasicNeeds (working for mental health across the Globe) for four years where she trained more than 250 health workers including doctors on mental health. She conducted more than 300 consultation workshops with community and non-health workers to sensitize on mental health and its importance. Her area of interest is: Gender, public health, grievance redressal mechanisms, stakeholders’ engagements, and mental health.
Mercy NjoguKenya (Org: SHOFCO)
Mercy Njogu is an experienced HR professional currently serving as the Human Resource Manager for Shining Hope for Communities (SHOFCO) in Nairobi, Kenya. With over eight years of experience in Human Resource Management, she holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Management with a specialization in Human Resources from Moi University, a Higher Diploma in Human Resource Management from the Institute of Human Resource Management, and a Diploma in Business Administration from the Nairobi Institute of Business Studies. Her role revolves around ensuring that SHOFCO’s HR policies and procedures align with its goals and objectives. One of Mercy’s significant achievements at SHOFCO was spearheading a comprehensive HR review that resulted in organizational restructuring, job evaluations, and the successful implementation of a new pay structure. This initiative significantly enhanced employee engagement and satisfaction within the organization. Prior to her role at SHOFCO, Mercy worked as an HR and Administrative Assistant at the Kenya office of the University of Maryland, Baltimore, and also dedicated her time as a volunteer HR professional at The Aga Khan University Hospital. As a leader, Mercy places a strong emphasis on the value of human capital and is deeply passionate about mentoring and empowering young girls, recognizing the transformative impact it can have on their lives and communities.
Victoria FajinmiNigeria (Org: Women for Women International)
Victoria Ayodele Fajinmi is currently working as an Advocacy Associate at Women for Women International, where she passionately advocates for women’s rights. With 17 years of working experience, she has developed a strong expertise in various areas including women’s participation and decision-making, reproductive health, education, advocacy, and economic empowerment. Originally from the Southwest of Nigeria, Victoria now resides in the Northeastern part of the country. She is currently pursuing her Master’s degree in Guidance and Counseling Education at the National Open University, Bauchi Center. Previously, she earned a Post Graduate Diploma in Education and a Higher National Diploma in Microbiology/Virology from the Nigeria Institute of Science Technology, Ibadan, and ATBU Bauchi campus, respectively. Victoria is actively involved with a group of women called Change Agents within Women for Women International. Together, they strive to bring about social change in their community, focusing on empowering women and promoting gender equality. Victoria is dedicated to making a positive impact on the lives of women in Nigeria. Victoria’s professional journey has involved the successful implementation of various projects in Bauchi state. She has also been involved in improving access to HIV/AIDS prevention among female sex workers and pregnant women, managing projects for the Bauchi State Agency for Tuberculosis, Malaria, and HIV/AIDS as part of the World Bank project. Furthermore, Victoria has actively addressed the education crisis through a USAID project, managing 28 centers for internally displaced persons (IDPs) in 14 communities of two local government areas in Bauchi, providing basic education and vocational training. Aside from her professional pursuits, Victoria finds joy in meeting people and traveling, enriching her experiences and perspectives along the way.
Monica NyagaKenya (Org: SHOFCO)
Monica Nyaga graduated from Moi University with a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work and a Master’s degree in Gender. Her passion lies in education and nurturing youth leadership skills. Currently working as a Program Officer at SHOFCO, Monica leads the access to education and post-secondary scholarship program. Her primary responsibility is to oversee the successful transition of girls into high school, with the goal of empowering them to become change-makers in their communities. Additionally, Monica served as a program officer with JCCP Kenya, where she organized training sessions and awareness-raising events in Eastleigh—a region prone to violent extremism and other forms of radicalization. She addressed the high rates of mental illness and gender-based violence through her work. Monica is deeply passionate about education and girls’ leadership initiatives. She firmly believes that early access to education for girls breaks the cycle of poverty, prevents child marriages, child labor, period poverty, and other forms of gender-based violence, thereby allowing girls to reach their fullest potential.
Malek KhenissiTunisia (Host: CARE)
Malek has more than six years of experience in the nonprofit sector in North Africa and earned a Master’s degree in Applied Sciences and Technologies from the University of Science of Carthage. For the previous four years, Malek has been managing operations of projects in Libya, Tunisia, and Morocco, making sure all projects meet their intended scope, budget, and timeline. Most of these projects aimed to assess the needs and living conditions of vulnerable groups, such as migrants and refugees, children, and communities affected by war. The output of these projects provided precise information and granular data on the humanitarian situation that more than thirty-six aid response agencies and decision-makers across the region used to know when, where, how, and what humanitarian assistance to provide to those in need. As an Operations Manager, Malek has also overseen talent acquisition, training, and integration of local staff. Prior to project operations management, Malek worked as a Senior Project Officer for six months overseeing the implementation of migration-related assessment on the border between Algeria, Tunisia, and Libya. Malek and the team of data collectors he was managing, collected more than four hundred surveys with migrants and refugees to understand their needs and integration process within the community. The output of this study was used by community stakeholders to integrate more than 20% of the refugees and migrants into the labor force of the area and by UNHCR for the resettlement of more than seventy profiles in acute need among them children and women. Malek’s main areas of interest are peacebuilding, child rights, and migration. His mindset of getting things done combined with his problem-solving abilities and teamwork skills are his main roadmap for tackling and positively contributing to these social issues.
Host Organization: CARE
Role at Host Organization: As a Supply Chain Fellow, Malek will support CARE’s supply chain transformation project and help drive key milestones. As one of the core team members, Malek will work with corporate partners and the senior team to review the organization’s supply chain to assess gaps, plan development, and prioritize needs. The Fellow will also support the implementation of supply chain policies and trainings across the organization’s different country offices.