Who We Are

We are a group of volunteers in Rwanda and the US who undertake the supervision, management and fundraising of RGFL at no cost to the project.  A very small proportion of the donations we receive (under 4 percent of our modest budget) is channeled to administration costs which includes bank and credit card donation fees, mailing costs and little else.  This means that close to one hundred percent of the contributions goes directly to the project to benefit the women.  A small part time staff is included in program costs.

In Rwanda:
Rakiya Omaar, Director, African Rights, has carried out extensive research and written widely on genocide, conflict, human rights and the search for peace, seeking in particular to provide a platform for the perspective of ordinary Africans on the issues that touch their lives. A Somali and a lawyer by training, she spends a considerable part of the year in Rwanda.

Caitlin Lambert, Program coordinator and field worker, is a US citizen who relocated to Rwanda in September 2010. Caitlin is a graduate of Mount Holyoke College and an alumna of AmeriCorps*VISTA. She joined RGFL part-time in August 2011 and is a researcher at African Rights.

Shemsa Uwase, Field worker and logistics manager, studies development at Kigali Independent University. Shemsa worked at African Rights as an administrative assistant and translator before joining RGFL in August 2011. She is Rwandan.

Clarisse Mwitegereze Umutesi, Field worker and interpreter, is a Generation Rwanda scholar who studies linguistics and translation at the National University of Rwanda. Clarisse joined RGFL in August 2011. She is Rwandan.

In the US:
Stephanie Urdang, US Coordinator, is a journalist and consultant on gender and HIV/AIDS and long time activist on human rights and gender equality issues. She has written widely on Africa, including two books.  She is currently completing a memoir that looks at events that contributed to the end of apartheid. She is a South African who lives in Montclair, New Jersey, USA.

Laura Tilden, Project Coordinator, is a clinical psychologist who has worked as a feminist therapist, corporate coach for women managers and consultant for women business owners. In addition, she has used her expertise in a variety of other fields such as retail, banking, financial planning, management consulting, and private investigation. Laura lives in New Jersey where she works in the field of domestic violence.

Eugenie Mukeshimana, Outreach and Education Officer, is a genocide survivor who came to the US in 2001 with her daughter. She has a degree in social work at the College of Saint Rose, Albany, New York. She is the founder and Executive Director of Genocide Survivors Support Network which provides support for survivors living in the US. She lives in New Jersey with her teenage daughter.

John Woodburn, Treasurer/Financial Officer, is Financial Director of Shared Interest, an non-profit organization that guarantees South African bank loans to low-income communities and their own financial institutions to create businesses, jobs and affordable homes and services.

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