Wonder working with Lantana and Wavecrest training young women for good employment in hospitality

Our team and trustees

Meet the team, trustees and advisors behind WONDER Foundation.

Team

Carmen Gonzalez

Director and trustee

Carmen Gonzalez has a wealth of experience in fundraising, training and youth work in the NGO sector. She has run numerous youth and female empowerment programmes in the UK and overseas. Carmen brings enormous insight into inter-cultural partnership working, participatory development and project management. She has studied at Queen Mary University of London and at the LSE.

Olivia Darby

Director of Policy and Campaigns

Olivia studied Geography at UCL, where she focused on overseas development. She has previously undertaken a range of policy and project management work for a number of civil society organisations. She has volunteered extensively, including setting up and leading projects for women and young people in the UK and abroad. She holds the APMP project management qualification. 

Paola Delmonaco

COO

Paola is an experienced professional with a track record as a senior financial analyst in private/listed companies and public institutions in the UK, Switzerland and Italy. She has 15 years’ experience as a volunteer coordinator of an international camp for children of immigrant families. She strives to cultivate her passion for improving the wellbeing of women for a better and more peaceful world.

Dominyka Lomsargyte

Events and Fundraising Manager

Dominyka holds a BA from the University of Arts, London, in Public Relations and an MA in Social Development from the University of Sussex, Brighton, where she focused her research on gender equality and economic empowerment. She is passionate about human rights, equality and finding durable solutions for women and girl to achieve their full potential.

Camille Thirot-Lafond

Communications Manager

Camille is passionate about human rights, gender issues and social justice. She holds a Master’s Degree in Gender Studies and Law from the School of Oriental and African Studies, where her research focused on gender issues and international law. She also has a Bachelor of Arts from Camberwell College of Arts and a keen interest in art and design.

Brigitta van Bilderbeek

Business Development Manager

Brigitta graduated from Southern Methodist University with a Bachelors of Fine Arts and has worked in several creative fields, including the arts, fashion and beauty. Her work has been motivated by the desire to empower women and encourage them to be the best they can be. She is passionate about education, community and family, and hosts talks for young women.

Olive Ahmed

Youth Projects Manager

Olive studied Ancient World Studies at UCL. During her time at university, she mentored teenagers and developed and delivered Project RAISE which was desired to encourage girls in East London. After graduating she worked in TV and new media at a variety of organisations. She brings a wealth of experience in front-line delivery and co-producing projects with young people.

Trustees

Ami Encarnacion

Chair

A digital and innovation executive with experience in both industry and consulting environments. Ami has a track record in helping organisations achieve customer and commercial outcomes through strategic reframing of business models, design of new propositions and impactful delivery of complex transformation initiatives. She has built up extensive global experience, having worked with colleagues and clients across Europe, the US, South America and Asia. 

Alejandra Fabrega

Vice-Chair/ Strategy

Alejandra has immense entrepreneurial experience, collaborating in several start-up efforts in the realm of finance and social enterprise. She also has a strong background in Investment Banking and an MBA degree from IESE. Being exposed to a multitude of experiences, cultures and societies after living in more than 16 cities in 5 continents she has a conviction that societies can be transformed with tremendous positive change through foundations like WONDER. Alejandra advises the foundation on its strategy, early-stage development of projects and financial viability

Modupe Da Silva

Treasurer and Finance Advisor

Modupe da Silva was born in the UK and spent her childhood in both London and Nigeria. An ACCA qualified accountant, she is WONDER's treasurer. Having grown up in Nigeria and having family there she understands many of the issues affecting Sub-Saharan African countries. In her spare time, she runs a youth club in West London.

Carmen Gonzalez

Director and trustee

Carmen Gonzalez has a wealth of experience in fundraising, training and youth work in the voluntary/ charitable/ NGO sector. She has run numerous youth and female empowerment programmes in the UK and overseas. Carmen brings enormous insight into inter-cultural partnership working, participatory development and project management. She has studied at Queen Mary University of London and at the LSE, and is a PRINCE2 Practitioner.

Raphaella Gabrasadig

Diversity and Participation

Raphaella is a qualified solicitor at a city law firm after achieving a 1st at UCL in Ancient World Studies and a distinction in both the Graduate Diploma in Law and the Legal Practice Course at BPP Law School. Born into a family who left Sudan as refugees, Raphaella has volunteered in her local community since she was 14 and went on to volunteer in Kenya as a team leader with the VSO ICS program for three months as well as in Croatia and Uganda. She regularly takes part in Wonder events in London and supports a local shelter for homeless people.

Uzoma Igboaka

Trustee

Uzo studied Maths at Cambridge before moving into investment banking at Goldman Sachs. Raised in a British-Nigerian family committed to excellence in education, Uzo brings a diaspora perspective to our work alongside strategic, business and analytical skills.  Uzo and his wife Ola have a daughter.

Jojean Porte

Trustee

Jojean started her professional studies at our partner school in the Philippines which led to her first job in the hospitality industry. Her skills were soon recognised and she received her first promotion. This trend continued and she found herself rising up the ranks as new hotels were opened in prestige locations.  Now based in London, she was HR manager at The Connaught and is now Regional Director of Human Resources at St Giles Hotels. Married with two children, Jojean brings insight into the hospitality industry and an alumni perspective to our Board.

Advisers

Anastasia Gabrasadig

Schools Advisor

Ana trained as a teacher and has been involved in Wonder projects from 2015. Having worked in state schools as well as private schools Ana is the mother of a young daughter. Ana helps us develop toolkits and materials for schools and educational purposes.

Dr Rick Adams

Health

Rick undertook undergraduate medical training at Cambridge University and clinical medical training at University College London. He worked full-time as a medical, then as a psychiatric doctor from 2004-10, obtaining his MRCP and MRCPsych. From 2009-10 he did a part-time MSc in the Philosophy of Mental Disorder at King's College London. From 2010-14, He did his PhD at the Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging at UCL. He is now an NIHR Clinical Lecturer in Psychiatry at UCL. Rick was a Wonder trustee from 2013-2016 and has also worked in Africa.

Manuela Balliet

Cote d'Ivoire and Healthcare

Originally from Côte d'Ivoire, Manuela is an international health specialist with expertise in epidemiology and newborn health. She is currently based at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and has particular experience of working with remote communities in Ethiopia.

Cristina Cleary

Schools Engagement

Cristina is a teenage fundraiser with a lot of success under her belt and a passion for making a difference. As our schools champion and a secondary school student, she helps us to make sure that our resources and engagement with young people is attractive and socially provocative.

Dr Chisom Emecheta

Women's Health

British-Nigerian Chisom Emecheta is a medical doctor with a particular interest in women's health. She has gained a range of experience working in the UK, has worked in Somalia and Sierra Leone, and undertaken a range of community work on FGM awareness and prevention.

Seday Hailu

Child Protection

Seday is a family law solicitor with a Master's in Children's Rights. Originally from Ethiopia, she has an understanding of the issues affecting women in developing countries. She has volunteered extensively; currently, she mentors young women from disadvantaged backgrounds at our partner, the Baytree Centre, and is a volunteer legal adviser at a women’s charity in London in her spare time. Seday was previously Chair of Trustees at Wonder.

Botagoz Hopkinson

Kazakhstan Advisor

Botagoz is British of Kazakhstani heritage. Botagoz has over 20 years bilateral, public, government and private sector experience including at the World Bank and the UK Department for International Development. She holds a Master’s from the London School of Economics and Political Science and diploma of the CCF Impact and Institute of Leadership and Management in Geneva and speaks English, Kazakh, Russian, Uzbek, Kyrgyz and Tatar.

Belinda Nwosu, FIH

Nigeria and Vocational Training

Belinda is the lead consultant for Human Capital Development Services at the W Hospitality Group. She is currently a PhD student at the Business School at the University of Southampton, where she is researching the cultural implications of performance outcomes in quality assurance among international brand hotels. Belinda is a well-respected professional with over 14 years’ experience as a lecturer and academic administrator at Wavecrest College of Hospitality, a leading hospitality institution and WONDER partner in Nigeria.

Dr Lucy Nyaguthii Gikonyo

Kenya and Hospitality Management

Lucy is a lecturer in Hospitality Management at the Centre of Tourism and Hospitality Management at Strathmore University in Kenya. She was involved with the foundation of the centre in 2006 and has been lecturing there since it opened in 2008. From 1987-2006 she worked at Kibondeni College, a Diploma College in Catering and Institutional Management. There she became Deputy Principal, delivering and developing the training curriculum as well as programmes for the training-of-trainers, the management of industrial training for trainees, and mentoring. Additionally, she developed income generation strategies.

Dr Brenda Osieyo

Public Health and Kenya

Born and raised in Kenya, Brenda moved to the UK in her teens and went on to study medicine. She has gained a range of experience in UK hospitals and worked in public health in South Africa. Brenda has volunteered with WONDER since 2010.

Marion Osieyo

Youth Active Citizenship

Marion is a young professional working to transform the policy, infrastructure and culture of global decision-making in international co-operation and development. Her areas of expertise lie in human rights (youth rights and women's rights) where she has worked over the past five years across Africa, Asia and Europe. Coupled with academic training in 'Global Governance and Diplomacy' at the University of Oxford, she is committed to contributing her skills in development policy, practice and advocacy to build more accountable, responsive, inclusive institutions of governance at the global level.

Marta Ponikowska

Education, Policy & Central and Eastern Europe

Lawyer, a graduate of law and political science from the University of Warsaw, Expert at the Educational Research Institute, Poland and the Chair of the Working Group Education and AI within the Polish Ministry of Digital Affairs. She gained professional experience in the private and public sector both in Europe and the U.S., among others, in law firms, the European Parliament and the Center for Civic Education. In 2013, she was a visiting researcher at the European Association for Education Law and Policy in Antwerp. Her academic interests focus on international law and education law.

Shefali Roy

Women and Technology

Raised in India and Australia, Shefali is the Chief Operating Officer of TrueLayer. She is the former Chief Compliance Officer (Europe) and MLRO for Stripe. She currently sits on the Boards of Adas List, a women’s in technology network, and Photoworks, a photography collective. She has undergraduate qualifications in law, economics and finance, and postgraduate qualifications in journalism and economic history, from RMIT, Oxford and LSE respectively; she has an EMBA from Oxford’s Saïd Business School, where she now also teaches. In 2016, Shefali was named on Innovate Finance’s Most Powerful Women in FinTech List, and in 2017, Shefali delivered her first TEDx talk, on ethics and business.

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