Meet the Team: Kigali, Winter 2017

Welcome to our new cohort of Challenges Worldwide International Citizen Service volunteers, or more formally our new team of Business Support Associates.  Over the following 3 months, they will be learning Professional Consulting with Challenges Worldwide and using their new skills toolkit to give support to SME’s across Kigali, Rwanda. Let’s take a few minutes to meet the team!

 

Meet the Team: Kevin

Name: Kevin Iradukunda
Age: 23
From: Kigali, Nyarugenge District
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Tom Calvert
Enterprise: Speranza Bakery
Before the programme: Studying Development Studies at the University of Rwanda.
Hopes for the placement: I want to help small and medium enterprises toward sustainable development and I am keen on personal development such as good relationships with others at the placement.
Fun fact: I like basketball too much, and I’m Arsenal fan forever.

 

Meet the Team: George

Name: Kategaya Bagabo George
Age: 21
From: Kigali, Kimironko
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Bernadette Pomphrey
Enterprise: Pasta Rwanda Ltd
Before the programme: A student at Kepler University.
Hopes for the placement: Hopes are working with SMEs to fix and resolve some problems they have.
Fun fact: I fear and hate cats.

 

Meet the Team: Tom

Name: Thomas Micheal Calvert
Age: 21
From: York, UK
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Kevin Iradukunda
Enterprise: Speranza Bakery 
Before the programme: Graduated from University and interned in China for 1 month.
Hopes for the placement: I wanted to make a positive change in a failing department of an otherwise very successful company.
Fun fact: I like rugby

 

Meet the Team: Zakee

Name: Zakee Ahmed
Age: 22
From: Born and raised in Leeds but my mum is from Pakistan and my dad’s from Malawi, Africa!
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Chanelle Mizero Anais
Enterprise: Made in Rwanda Online 
Before the programme: I was interning for a Development Consultancy in Cairo, Egypt – working on a range of development projects around the Middle East and North Africa
Hopes for the placement: I hope to fully immerse myself in the Rwandan culture, and truly make a difference to some of the local SME’s in Kigali.
Fun fact: I love rugby, but almost lost my ear in a game!

 

Meet the Team: Bernie

Name: Bernadette Pomphrey
Age: 24
From: Cardiff, UK
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Kategaya Bagabo George
Enterprise: Pasta Rwanda Ltd
Before the programme: Deputy Manager at a respite centre.
Hopes for the placement: Hope to make a change in a different way, and get a future job as a business consultant.
Fun fact: Interested in wildlife and castles

 

Meet the Team: Ayush

Name: Ayush Bhandari
Age: 22
From: born in Northern Ireland, grew up in South East Asia, ethnically Indian, lives in London.
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Christelle Ikuzwe
Enterprise: Pascal Technology
Before the programme: Studied Mathematics and Economics at the London School of Economics, interned with Disney.
Hopes for the placement: Want to give back to the world through using the knowledge I gained at university to build sustainable local economies. Challenges Worldwide provide such an opportunity; a practical business environment where I can learn first-hand the challenges faced by firms growing in the developing world whilst applying myself to create an impact.
Fun fact: Represented India in a Karate world tournament

 

Meet the team: Chanelle Anais

Name: Chanelle Anais Mwizero
Age: 21
From: Burundi
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Zakee Ahmed
Enterprise: Made in Rwanda Online
Before the Programme: A student
Hopes for the placement: Hope to apply skills learned from school and to learn new skills needed in a workplace
Fun fact: I like travelling and meeting new people

 

Meet the Team: Tanika

Name: Tanika Facey
Age: 25
From: London
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Yvonne Mukakapitale
Enterprise: K’tsobe
Before the programme: Sales Manager for food and drink events
Hopes for the placement: Get an insight into how an SME works, and the challenges that they face. To put practical business knowledge to good use and help to make a positive impact.
Fun fact: Performed as part of Brockley choir at Glastonbury Festival last year.

 

Meet the Team: Corina

Name: Corina Baltag
Age:  24
From: Moldova
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Jonas Twizeyimana
Enterprise: Safer Rwanda
Before the programme: studied MSc in Development Studies at London School of Economics, before embarking on the Challenges Worldwide adventure.
Hopes for the placement: To make a difference to the business and help it increase its sales
Fun fact: Alongside playing football for CASS and LSE at both undergraduate and postgraduate level at University, Corina has a knack for card games and within 3 weeks of living in Rwanda has made it to the semi-final of a local card-game ‘gukina amakarita’ tournament, making her a cult hero!

 

Meet the Team: Jonas

Name: Jonas Twizeyimana
Age: 24
From: born in Rusizi District in the Western Province of Rwanda but is now based in Kigali.
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Corina Baltag
Enterprise: Safer Rwanda
Before the programme: Studied Biomedical Equipment Technology at IPRC Kigali and has previously volunteered at Edified Generation in Rwanda before taking part in ICS.
Hopes for the programme: To volunteer and develop my country.
Fun fact: Enjoys playing handball and dancing.

 

Meet the Team: Yvonne

Name: Yvonne Mukakapitale
Age: 20
From: Gakenke District, North Province of Rwanda.
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Tanika Facey
Enterprise: K’tsobe
Before the programme: was part of the internship at the Pivot Academy, a program with Mothering Across Continents initiative is now in year 2 at Kepler University.
Hopes for the placement: To be a good analyst, and interact well with diverse people.
Fun fact: Yvonne has a keen interest in movies, especially Korean movies.

 

Meet the Team: Paradise

Name: Paradis Coudra
Age: 23
From: Northern Province
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Yasmin Sattar
Enterprise: Excellent Design
Before the programme: student in University of Rwanda pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, Gatsibo
Hopes for the placement: Develop new skills
Fun fact: District eastern province, he loves to farm and cultivate.

 

Meet the Team: Noelline

Name: Noelline Ahimana
Age: 20
From: Rwanda, Kigali
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart:  Selma Skov Hoye
Enterprise: Eco-Plastic
Before the programme:  I am still working to get my Bachelor of Arts in Management with the concentration in Logistics and Operations. I was working on my last project about the importance of regular employee’s performance evaluation. I am expecting to graduate in December.
Hopes for the placement: Learning more about business especially SME’s challenges and getting an insight into British Culture.
Fun fact: I love singing.

 

Meet the Team: Clementine

Name: Clementine Iradukunda
Age: 23
From: Western Province, Rwanda
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Bethan Waller
Enterprise: Hand Textile and Tailoring
Before the programme: I am still studying at Kepler
Hopes from the placement: I hope to gain skills in business consultancy and to see the business I am working with growing due to the effort I will put in what I am doing.
Fun Fact:  I like to swim but I’ve never tried.

 

Meet the team: Kirsty

Name: Kirsty Lightfoot
Age: 23
From: Leeds, West Yorkshire
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Chanelle Mwizawase
Enterprise: Imagine We
Before the programme: Graduate of Business Economics and did a placement year at Mars – the chocolate.
Fun fact: Loves rock climbing and any form of adrenaline sports.

 

Meet the team: Freya

Name: Freya MacMillan
Age: 21
From: Glasgow, Scotland
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Gaelle Gisubizo
Enterprise: Uzi Collection
Before the programme: Just graduated from the University of Bristol and was working in hospitality.
Hopes for the placement: To experience a new culture, meet new people, as well as make a significant impact on a social enterprise.
Fun fact: My family makes wine.

 

Meet the team: Gaelle

Name: Gaelle Gisubizo
Age: 22
From: Kigali
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Freya MacMillan
Enterprise: Uzi Collection
Before the programme: Working with the national youth council
Fun Fact: I love politics, swimming and playing basketball.

 

Meet the team: Yasmin

Name: Yasmin Sattar
Age: 25
From: London, England
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Paradis Coudra
Enterprise: Excellent Design
Before the programme: Was working in IT at Buckingham Palace.
Hopes for the placement: Make a difference to someone’s life through volunteering and experience a new culture!
Fun fact: I can fold my tongue.

 

Meet the team: Bethan

Name: Bethan Waller
Age: 22
From: North Yorkshire, England
Role:  Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Clementine Iradukunda
Enterprise: Hand Textile and Tailoring
Before the programme: I was studying International Business Management with French at Northumbria University.
Hopes for the placement: To make a real difference to my business and have a positive impact on peoples’ lives.
Fun fact: I was bitten on my knee by a cheetah in South Africa.

 

Meet the team: Selma

Name: Selma Skov Hoye
Age: 25
From: Tromso (Northern Norway)
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Noelline Ahimana
Enterprise: Eco-Plastic
Before the programme: Research assistant in Copenhagen.
Hopes for the placement: To learn about the challenges SMEs in a country like a Rwanda face. Develop professionally and learn about a new culture.
Fun fact: I’m from a place where the sun doesn’t set for two months in summer and doesn’t rise in winter for 2 months

 

Meet the team: Sam

Name: Sam Scully
Age: 22
From: Lake District, UK
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Francis Mugabukenga
Enterprise: Mesh Power
Before the programme: Just finished university studying business management at York St. John
Hopes for the placement: To understand a different way of life and immerse myself in Rwandan culture and work.
Fun fact: My uncle was the presenter of the antique roadshow and I ran half a marathon in 92 minutes.

 

Meet the team: France

Name: France Mainardi
Age: 22
From: Half Scottish, Half French grew up in Egypt.
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Divine Cyusa Habimana
Enterprise: Isano Women’s Empowerment
Before the programme: Before starting at Challenges Worldwide, I was running an estate called Inverskilavulin near Fort William in the Scottish Highlands after having just graduated from the School of Oriental and African Studies in BA Politics and Social Anthropology.
Hopes for the placement: Some incredible experience working in a company that is attempting to change the socio-political and economic effects of the recent Rwandan Genocide, and get some solid experience with the challenges of being a start-up company in the developing world.
Fun fact: I grew up in Cairo, Egypt.

 

Meet the team: Divine

Name: Divine Cyusa Habimana
Age:  22
From: Rwanda
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: France Mainardi
Enterprise: Isano Women’s Empowerment
Before the programme: Was a student at Kepler University pursuing communications with Business Focus
Hopes for the placement: Work hard and make a difference to people’s lives.
Fun fact: I am a pastor.

 

Meet the team: Joseph

Name: Joseph Vincent
Age: 24
From: Devon
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Rosine Niyonkuru
Enterprise: Awesomity  Lab
Before the programme: Primary research for management and strategy consulting projects with Finalta Mckenzie and Co, and strategy at Pwc.
Hopes for the placement: To get an experience of leading a project that will make a positive impact in people lives in a developing country and learn a lot of practical business skills while doing so.
Fun fact: I have trekked to Annapurna base camp in the Himalayas

 

Meet the team: Rosine

Name: Rosine Niyonkuru
Age: 23
From: Kicukiro, Rwanda
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Joseph Vincent
Enterprise: Awesomity Lab
Before the programme: Student
Hopes for the placement: My hopes are personal and professional development, entrepreneurial skills and knowledge about business, and ways of making a difference in people’s lives.
Fun fact: Eating makes me happy and blessed

 

Meet the Team: Chanelle

Name: Chanelle Mwizawase
Age:  23
From:  Kigali, Rwanda
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Kirsty Lightfoot
Enterprise: Imagine We
Before the programme: Student
Hope for the placement: Gained Business experience and understand businesses
Fun fact: I LOVE to read

 

Meet the team: Christelle

Name: Christelle Ikuzwe
Age: 23
From: Kigali, Rwanda
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Ayush Bhandari
Enterprise: Pascal Technology
Before the programme: Student
Hopes for the placement: My expectations are having consulting skills, improve my problem-solving skills and having a developed teamwork spirit at the end of the placement.
Fun fact: I love watching films

 

Meet the team: Francis

Name: Francis Mugabukenga
Age: 22
From: Eastern Province, Kayonza
Role: Business Support Associate
Counterpart: Sam Scully
Enterprise: Mesh Power
Before the programme: Working as a teaching assistant
Hopes for the placement: Gaining experience and expanding my network
Fun fact: I love doughnuts

 

Meet the Team: Michael

Name: Michael Haigh
Age: 24
From: London, England
Role: Team Leader
Counterpart: Liza Imbonabake
Before the programme: Before being a Team Leader with Challenges I was a Project Coordinator for Harvey Goldsmith CBE. My roles varied from managing the Marketing and Ticketing for Hans Zimmer Live tour which was a worldwide tour with 56 arena shows.
Hopes for the placement: To offer quality consulting for SME’s and to achieve the desired personal development for all our volunteers.
Fun Fact: Has broken every limb multiple times.

 

Meet the team: Claudia

Name: Claudia Diaz
Age: 27
From: A lovely city in the north of Spain called Bilbao, but for the last two years, I have been living in Edinburgh.
Role: Team leader
Counterpart: Emmanuel Nsabimana
Before the programme: Working in a hotel.
Hopes for the placement: to get to know as much as possible about Rwanda and its culture. To gain and develop some new skills.
Fun fact: I love apples and when I was younger I was eating them all the time and so my nickname became Manzanas which means apples in Spanish, even teachers would be calling me this.

 

Meet the team: Emmanuel

Name: Emmanuel Nsabimana
Age: 23
From: Rwanda
Role: Team Leader
Counterpart: Claudia Diaz
Before the programme: Housing Coordinator and student at Kepler Kigali.
Hopes for the placement: I hope to learn more about business development. In addition to boosting my leadership skills, I hope to advance my business skills on how start-ups operate as well as putting my business knowledge into action and help to make a positive impact in my country.
Fun fact: I like people who take pork meat but I am a vegetarian.

 

Meet the team: Liza

Name: Liza Imbonabake
Age: 22
From: Kigali, Rwanda
Role: Team Leader
Counterpart: Michael Haigh
Before the programme: Student at Southern New Hampshire.
Hopes for the placement: Strengthen cross culture working and making an impact in my home country.
Fun fact: I hate all pets.