OUR BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Paul B.B. Kithima
Paul B.B. Kithima is a Refugee Advocate, Humanitarian, writer, and film director.
He is the Director of the Bondeko Refugee Livelihoods Centre, and he is the CEO of GLOs, The Grassroots consortium, and the chairperson of BYTI The Brighter Future for Disabled Children.
He is also a former member of the Advisory Board of the Omprakash whereby he supervised more than 48 grassroots organizations and NGOs Omprakash’s partners in the region of East and Southern Africa.
He’s been advocating since 2013 to promote access to justice for refugees in Uganda. And as a survivor of torture and Violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo, he's been advocating since 2014 to end torture and sexual violence in conflict zones. And between 2016-2017 he co-facilitated the implementation in Uganda of the “International Protocol on the Documentation and Investigation of Sexual Violence in Conflict” during the training of Ugandan contingents prior to deployment in Somalia on the AMISCOM peace-keeping mission and during the training of Police officers.
Paul Kithima is now a champion of the Localization of humanitarian response to the refugee crisis, and Climate Action worldwide.
Father Michael flees from the Democratic Republic of the Congo in 1997 due to persecution. Upon being granted asylum in Uganda, he met with other refugees in Kampala the Capital City of Uganda, and founded Bondeko Refugee Livelihoods Centre as a response to the refugee crises, resulting from the Genocide of Rwanda in 1994 and from the war in the Democratic Republic of Congo in 1997. He led Bondeko Centre as its first Executive Director from 1997 to 2013, when he was resettled in Canada. He actually lives in Granby, where he’s a priest intervening to assist the youths who are facing difficulties.
Milan NGANGAY studied geography and environment from the D.R. Congo.
He was a volunteer as the coordinator of Bondeko Refugee Livelihoods Centre as well as an English instructor for beginners from 2009 to 2013. He was also in charge of the youth soccer team during the same period.
Milan was resettled in Canada in 2013 and now works as a Logistic Supply at CIUSSS du Nord-de-l’île-de-Montreal.
Patricia is the Chairperson of Bondeko Refugee Livelihoods Centre. She is also a seasoned executive coach and workshop facilitator. Patricia previously held senior leadership roles including Vice President of the International Marketplace Insights team at American Express and Managing Director of the London and Singapore offices of Millward Brown, now Kantar, a leading global data and insights consultancy. Born and raised in Canada, Patricia is currently based in Singapore and has also lived in the UK, USA and South Africa.
Dr. Evan Easton-Calabria is a research associate at the Refugee Studies Centre, University of Oxford, and a senior researcher at the Feinstein International Center, Tufts University. She is also the lead editor of the Refugee Studies Centre’s research dissemination platform Rethinking Refuge. Before that, she worked on the Refugee Economies Programme's research project on refugee-led social protection.
Evan is the author of over 70 publications for academics, practitioners, policymakers, and the public on refugee and forced migration issues. Most recently she published 'Refugees, Self-Reliance, Development: A critical history' (Bristol University Press 2022).
Thierry is a trained lawyer from the Democratic Republic of Congo. For 5 years he volunteered as the Executive Director of Bondeko Refugee Livelihoods Centre, as well as worked for Refugee Law Project as an Administrative Assistant/Acting Personal Assistant to the Director for 4 years, and as an assessment and intake Officer for one year. He’s been instrumental in developing and managing Bondeko Refugee Livelihoods Centre from 2013 to 2018 when he was resettled in Canada. He’s presently working as an Inspector at Agence Canadienne d’inspection des aliments.
During the Covid-19 outbreak, in 2020 and the lockdown nationwide in Uganda, grassroots organizations played a crucial role. At Bondeko we did all we could do to assist the community. However, despite being in the front line like that during that period, Bondeko wasn’t capable to pay rent, and several other grassroots organizations ended up shutting down their activities, due to the lack of funds.
So, that’s when the Executive Director of Bondeko Refugee Livelihoods Centre started thinking that it would be great to have a platform dedicated to fundraising in order to subgrant not only Refugee Led Organizations but even other grassroots organizations that include refugees in their programming.
In 2021, 13 organizations operating at the grassroots level joined Bondeko Centre to create a grassroots consortium named GLOs.
In June 2022, the Executive Director of Bondeko Refugee Livelihoods Centre was invited to Geneva as a panelist in the main session on Localization during the UNHCR Global Consultations with NGOs, due to his work among fellow refugees in Uganda, and the coordination, he's been doing with different grassroots organizations across the globe. And in December 2022, he participated as a speaker in the UN High Commissioner's Dialogue on protection challenges in Geneva.
Bondeko Centre supports the implementation of the Global Compact on Refugees and the Grand Bargain agenda.
Participation in international fora
"Responses are most effective when they actively and meaningfully engage those they are intended to protect and assist" (Global Compact on Refugees, Paragraph 34).
The leadership role of Bondeko Centre among refugees in Uganda has positioned us in the front line of advocacy in Geneva.