Onyinyechi Okechukwu
Onyinyechi Okechukwu

Communications & Knowledge Management Officer

Onyinyechi Okechukwu is a Nigerian national, a communication for development specialist with over 15 years’ experience of developing and implementing programmes that promote human rights in Africa with a strong interest in women’s rights.

She has worked in several international development organisations including Alliances for Africa, Media for Development Nigeria, WaterAid and ActionAid leading communications, advocacy and campaigns initiatives across Africa and Europe.She has a strong media relations experience having worked as a radio and television producer and managed media networks in west and other parts of Africa with a passion for campaigns and policy influencing on women’s rights issues.

Onyinyechi is using her work to create innovative digital and traditional media activities that influence policies, attitudes and public behaviour towards advancing women’s rights across the world.

She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the Lagos State University, a Masters’ degree in Humanitarian and Refugee Studies from University of Lagos as well as certificate in Communications in Emergency

Masa Amir
Masa Amir

Learning & Innovations Programme Officer

Masa is an Egyptian national. Masa has a passion for women’s human rights and is particularly interested in women’s economic rights, and strengthening the protection mechanisms and effective responses to women human rights defenders (WHRDs) at risk,

with special focus on WHRDs in North Africa. Prior to joining UAF-Africa, Masa worked with Nazra for Feminist Studies, as a researcher for the Women Human Rights Defenders (WHRDs) Program. Masa has experience in the documentation of violations faced by women human rights defenders and conducting advocacy at the Human Rights Council and African Commission for Human and Peoples’ Rights.Masa holds a Master’s degree in International Human Rights Law from the American University in Cairo (AUC), Arab Republic of Egypt, the focus of her thesis being on the manner in which violations of the right to social security contribute to poverty among women in Egypt; and a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations, with a minor in philosophy, from the American University of Sharjah (AUS), United Arab Emirates.In her spare time, Masa enjoys diving, baking, and sometimes Zumba dancing!

Nancy Chitiza
Nancy Chitiza

Human Resources Manager/Executive Assistant

Nancy has worked in conflict and post-conflict African countries with the United Nations Department of Peacekeeping Operations, (UNDPKO). Her career with the UN spans for 8 years, where she worked with the UN Mission in Liberia, UNMIL, and UN Hybrid Mission in Darfur (UNAMID).

Nancy holds a Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Zimbabwe and BA in Sociology and Economics from Africa University.She is currently pursuing professional accreditation with the Chartered Institute of Personnel Development (CIPD), which is the main professional body to accredit and award professional human resources (HR) qualifications. Nancy loves the field of Human Resources Administration and Management, she has worked in the field for over 10 years and is very excited about the endless possibilities at UAF-Africa. Nancy works from Harare, Zimbabwe.

Ndana Bofu
Ndana Bofu-Tawamba

CEO & Executive Director

Ndanatsei Bofu-Tawamba, an African citizen and Zimbabwean national, is the CEO & Executive Director at Urgent Action Fund-Africa (UAF-Africa), in Kenya. UAF-Africa is a feminist and pan-African rapid response grant making organisation that invests in African women’s power …

to change the status quo. Ndana is a seasoned feminist and women’s rights advocate, a social entrepreneur with philanthropic expertise spanning 20 years. Prior to leading at UAF-Africa, Ndana was in charge of the UN Women Office in Zimbabwe where she led in the execution of the multi-million-dollar funded EC, DFID & DANIDA Gender Support Programme.Ndana has leveraged over USD100 million directed towards strengthening African women’s movements and achieving women and girls’ rights. She has lectured at the Women’s University in Africa, been invited as guest lecturer and speaker at several high-level platforms across Africa, Europe, South and North America. She is a renowned speaker and published writer on topics of African women’s leadership in conflict transformation, Regenerative African & feminist philanthropy, and the nexus between Ebola, HIV&AIDS, women and culture. In the global human rights community, Ndana is a staunch figure and voice for enhanced women’s rights investments.

Ndana is an Executive Education alumnus of INSEAD Business Schools in France and Singapore. She is a Senior International Fellow at the Centre on Philanthropy and Civil Society at CUNY, USA. She earned her Master’s Degree in Women’s Studies from Lancaster University, UK, obtained her Bachelor of Science Honors Degree in Social Psychology from the University of Zimbabwe and holds a Diploma in Personnel Management. Ndana serves on the Board of the African Philanthropy Network. She represents African Women’s Funds on the Governance Board of the International Network of Women’s Funds (Prospera), in Mexico. Her leadership at UAF-Africa, the UN, academia, international boards, regional consultancies on philanthropy, human rights, social movements & governance has meant extensive engagements across the world, thereby presenting her the opportunity to weave her commitment to social justice with an opportunity to further explore women and girl’s realities throughout the world.
Twitter: @NdanaTawamba & @UAFAfrica

Shinaz Rehema
Shinaz Rehema Ali

Anglophone Assistant Grantmaking Officer

Prior to joining UAF-Africa, Shinaz worked as a social worker, theatre trainer and a project officer within different projects of AMREF’s Children In Need Programme. She has extensive experience and expertise in women’s rights, development and implementation of legal policies

and community oriented capacity development on psychosocial issues. She is passionate about women’s human rights and keen on the intersectionalities between women’s rights and religion with emphasis on fundamentalisms, women and natural resources governance, policy reforms and has specific interest on Young Women and Girls in Africa.Shinaz’s rare skills set in legal, social work and the arts has been greatly valued at UAF-Africa’s grant making portfolio where intersectional strategies in the provision of grants is of huge priority. Her analytical, inquisitive and curious nature has afforded her the opportunity to conduct instructive grant making due diligence thereby ensuring provision of sound and innovative grants that have gone on to change women’s realities on the ground.

She holds an LLB from the University of Nairobi School of Law and Diplomas in Project Management and Social Work and Development. She is currently completing her studies in French and finalizing her Master of Arts Degree in International Relations and Political Science from the University of Nairobi. She enjoys fashion, art, reading, sewing, cooking and working out during her spare time.

Nyasha Chibanda
Nyasha Chibanda

Office Assistant

Nyasha is a Zimbabwean national. She works as the hygienist, hospitality, staff and office orderly assistant in the Zimbabwe office where she runs the day to day office errands.She is highly motivated and is excited to learn and grow with the Fund.

She is a women’s human rights activist, and strong advocate for social and economic justice.
During her spare time, she loves going to church and enjoys morning jogs.
Edmond Mugisha
Edmond Mugisha

Francophone Assistant Grantmaking Officer

Edmond is a Burundian national. Prior to officially joining Urgent Action Fund-Africa in January 2016, Edmond had been working intermittently at the Fund in various capacities since May 2010 under the Grantmaking Programme.

Edmond is instrumental in facilitating the Fund’s translation of English materials to French and vice versa and this enables the Fund reach out to Francophone grantees, advisors and partners and thus support the advancement of women’s human rights across the continent. He plays a major role in organising UAF-Africa’s conferences in Francophone countries. His work experience at UAF-Africa has grounded his global perspective and developed his interest and awareness on different cultural, political, social and economic contexts.

His self-motivated spirit has made him set a target of speaking ten languages. Edmond is now fluent in French, English, Korean, Swahili, Kirundi, and Kinyarwanda and is currently learning Deutsch. He has enriched his language and translation skills by providing interpretation and translation services to various organisations including Fahamu, New Mark Group, and Elloca. Edmond holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Integrated Community Development from Daystar University-Kenya and a certificate of Korean Language efficiency from Kosin University-South Korea.

In his spare time, Edmond enjoys reading novels, jogging, watching detective and spy movies, making new friends, and of course learning new languages!

Joyce Kabene

Finance Associate

Joyce Kabene is a CPA and a Bachelor of Commerce graduate from Kenyatta University with over four years working experience in finance and grants management handling analysis of financial systems, donor and management reporting

payroll management and other pertinent finance related tasks. Prior to joining UAF-Africa, Joyce served both as a Finance Associate and a Finance Assistant at UHAI EASHRI where she assisted in the day to day financial management of UHAI and its hosted organisations. Joyce was also a member of the Secretariat Grant proposals. Before joining UHAI EASHRI, Joyce served as a Finance and Grants Management Assistant at Akiba Uhaki Foundation, where she worked for 3 years. Joyce is currently learning French at Alliance Français. Joyce likes swimming and looks forward to an amazing time in UAF-Africa.
Pamela Mudhune
Pamela Mudhune

Business Manager

Pamela is a qualified accountant with several years of experience in financial management, implementation of internal controls and financial reporting. She has been with the Fund since 2004 and heads the Finance and Administrative roles of UAF-Africa.

Her prior work experience includes working as a Financial Accountant at General Motors Ltd where she was exposed to various financial management roles within the Finance Department.She was awarded a Masters in Accounting from the Bowling Green State University, USA and earned her Bachelor of Commerce degree from Kenyatta University, Kenya. She is also a member of the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Kenya –ICPAK, and has undertaken short courses in audit, taxation and resource mobilization. Pamela serves on the Kenya Advisory Board of Global Education Fund.

Tariro Tandi
Tariro Tandi

Partnerships & Development Manager

Prior to joining UAF-Africa, Tariro lectured in Gender, HIV&AIDS and the Law at Great Zimbabwe University. She worked at Zimbabwe Women Lawyers Association (ZWLA) as the Transformative Justice Manager as well as at Plan International and Musasa Project in various coordination and advisory capacities.

Her core expertise is in the areas of gender based violence, human rights and the law as it impacts on women. Tariro is a seasoned gender legal researcher and analyst who has spearheaded several cutting edge women-centred partnership initiatives in Zimbabwe and within Africa. Tariro holds a Master’s degree in Women’s Law (MSWL) attained from Southern and East African Regional Centre for Women’s Law (University of Zimbabwe), a Bachelor of Laws Honours Degree (LLBS) from the University of Zimbabwe and an Executive Certificate in Community Development and Humanitarian Project Management.She recently participated in the 2016 Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) in the US. In 2015 she was nominated for the Female Youth Human Rights Defender Zimbabwe Award.Tariro enjoys mentoring young women leaders. She is an avid legal and social justice journals reader and a keen blogger who writes about socio-political, legal and gender justice issues. Tariro is a fitness-cum-wellness enthusiast; a runner who has actively participated in the 2 Oceans (56 Km) Marathon in South Africa.
Caroline Kiarie

Grantmaking Programmes Officer

Caroline, a Kenyan national, has been with the Fund since 2010. She has a wealth of experience and interest in women’s rights and conflict management.Her strength in critical analysis of women’s priorities and concerns within conflict and post conflict settings has been of phenomenal importance to the grant making programme.

She is committed towards promoting and defending the rights of women and girls across the continent and has been doing so especially through documentation and writing opinion pieces about her experiences interacting with marginalized communities in Kenya and Angola.

Caroline’s enthusiastic engagement with communications has also been of critical essence within the grant making portfolio. In this regard she has advanced the fundamental need to highlight grantees’ experiences through strategic use of multi-media platforms including i-stories in showcasing the impact that women’s work has on the sustainable development of their communities.

Caroline ardently believes in women’s agency and uses her skills in conflict analysis and communication to support and profile the lives and work of African women. She is an expert resource in organizing convenings across the globe. In this regard, Caroline organizes spaces that facilitate regional and nuanced intergenerational knowledge, skills, strategies and tactics exchange. She has facilitated meetings on peace, security and justice and spoken extensively on women’s rights issues at high-level human rights gatherings including during UN organized convenings.

Caroline holds a Master of Arts Degree in International Conflict Management from the University of Nairobi, Bachelor of Arts Degree in Sociology and Communications and a Diploma in French. She is a member and past director of the Rotaract Club of Nairobi Central.

In her spare time, Caroline enjoys baking, traveling and reading political journals.

Vanessa Luendo Bwale

Grantmaking Programme Attaché

Vanessa Luendo Bwale is a Congolese national from DRC and a Bachelor of Arts in Communications graduate from Daystar University Kenya. In Vanessa has worked with NewMark Group as PR account manager. She is currently undertaking her Masters Degree in Diplomacy, Development and International Security and is well versed in issues pertaining to women’s rights and development.

Through the different countries she’s lived and worked in, Vanessa developed over the years unparalleled abilities in contextual and critical analysis that will support UAF Africa in advancing women’s human rights across Africa.
She previously taught English in India through AIESEC and is fluent in French, English, Kiswahili and is currently learning Spanish. She acquired interpretation and translation skills through her work with Oxfam GB and African Voices. In her spare time, she enjoys writing, cooking, travelling and reading motivational books.


Miriam Wanjira Gichuhi
Miriam Wanjira

Office Assistant

Miriam is a Kenyan national. She works as a hospitality focal person in the Kenyan office where she runs the day to day office care services. She has a keen eye for details and is a very cheerful person. Miriam is passionate about promoting the rights of vulnerable grassroots women. She volunteers some of her time to local women empowerment initiatives in her community.

She appreciates the need to provide support towards women’s human rights. In her free time, Miriam a mother of two children, loves to cook and take care of people around her.