Kuhenza Staff

Leonard Mbonani

Kenya Executive Director and Co-founder

Leonard has over 40 years of experience working in disability programs as a special needs assessment officer for the government, a disability researcher for an internationally-funded nonprofit organization, and an educator at special schools and units throughout Kilifi County.  As the organisation’s Executive Director, Leonard is responsible for Kuhenza’s strategic planning, local fundraising, reporting, partnership collaboration, event planning, child monitoring, family counseling, and program development and implementation.

Leonard holds certificates Secondary Education and Primary School Management and Diplomas in Special Education and Learning Difficulties. He has participated in disability care training programs in the U.S., Denmark and Kenya and has led workshops and participated in health conferences in Tanzania, Nigeria and various regions of Kenya.

 

Martha Karo

Project Director

Martha has over 30 years of experience as a teacher for students who are deaf. Until 2017, she was also the head teacher at the Gede Special School, the first special needs school supported by Kupenda. Martha’s work and experience helps Kupenda stay connected to the local education system.  As Project Director, Martha co-manages the organization’s Advocacy, Education and Medical activities alongside the Executive Director. She also manages the organization’s Child Sponsorship Program.

 

Loice Maluki

Project Officer

In her role as Project officer Loice collects information for the child sponsorship program, assesses and monitors children with disabilities, connects children with special needs schools and hospitals, works with pastors, facilities advocacy workshops, and assists the Kenya director, as needed. Loice holds certificates in Primary Education, Secondary Education, Computer Maintenance, and Computer Software. She also holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Religion and a Masters degree in Religious Studies.

Joseph Karisa

Project Officer

In his work with Kuhenza, Joseph he assists the team with program implementation, reporting, and disability advocacy training.Joseph is an experienced secondary school educator and has earned diplomas in information technology and Business English, he also has certificates in peer guidance and counselling and computer repair and maintenance.

 

James Katana

Bookkeeper and Resource Center Manager

As Kuhenza’s bookkeeper, James is responsible for recording Kuhenza’s income and expenses, collecting receipts, developing financial reports and preparing for Kenyan government audits. He also oversees the purchase, cataloguing and inventory of all materials in Kuhenza’s Resources Center.

James holds a diploma in accounting and a certificate in computer applications from Mombasa Polytechnic University.

Kuhenza Board of Directors

Reverend Robert Mangi

Chair

Reverend Robert Mangi has been a pastor for over 30 years leading congregations at eight different Anglican churches in Kilifi County.

As Kuhenza’s Board Chair, Reverend Mangi is responsible for overseeing Kuhenza’s board and executive committee meetings. He also works in partnership with the executive director to ensure Board resolutions are carried out and calls special meetings, as needed.

 

Norbert Deche

Vice-Chair

Norbert was drawn to the work of Kuhenza because he has a daughter with a disability who is still under his care, even though she is over 30 years old. Although now retired, Norbert spent his career working as a legal advisor and travelling extensively in his position with Kenya’s immigration department.

As Kuhenza’s Vice Board Chair, Norbert attends all of Kuhenza’s board meetings and carries out special assignments, as requested by the board chair.

 

Gabriel Mwanengo

Board Member

Gabriel has over 20 years of experience working as a teacher for children who are deaf. He was also the head of a special unit at the Gede Special School for children who are deaf or have physical disabilities.

As Kuhenza’s Board Treasurer, Gabriel manages the review of and action related to the Board’s financial responsibilities.

 

Leonard Mbonani

Secretary

As is typical for his role as Kuhenza’s Executive Director, Leonard also acts as the Board’s Secretary. Although a nonvoting member, he is an active participant in the Board’s strategic planning, decision making, evaluation and fundraising efforts. Leonard also helps act as the point of contact between Kuhenza and Kupenda – providing the Board with updates from our American partners, and vice versa.

If you want to know more about the work Leonard does at Kuhenza, check out his profile above.

 

Linnet Mkutano

Board Member

Linnet developed epilepsy at the age of 26 and by 27 was unable to walk to talk due to the paralysis caused by her seizures. She was bedridden until the age of 35, when she finally received medicine to manage her seizures and began working with a physical therapist to improve her mobility.  Linnet has certificates in Rights of the Girl Child and Counseling for Stroke Victims. She also has a Certificate in Early Childhood Education from the Kilifi District Education Center

As a Board member, Linnet attends all of Kuhenza’s board meetings and important related meetings. She is also an active participant in the Board’s strategic planning, decision making, evaluation and fundraising efforts. Linnet provides counsel to the executive director and his team as requested and according to her areas of expertise.

 

Cynthia Bauer

Board Member

Cynthia, the Kupenda founder and executive director, is also a board member for Kuhenza. As a Board member, Cynthia is an active participant in the Board’s strategic planning, decision making, evaluation and fundraising efforts. Cynthia provides counsel to the executive director and his team as requested and according to her areas of expertise. Read Cynthia’s full biography in the “U.S. Staff” section above.

 

Francis Kalu

Board Member

Francis is a teacher and a pastor in Mombasa Diocese. He has extensive experience working for nonprofit organizations and frequently advocates for the rights of people with disabilities through speeches at ceremonies, public meetings and Kuhenza’s Village Disability Awareness Days.

As a Board member, Francis attends all of Kuhenza’s board meetings and important related meetings. He is also an active participant in the Board’s strategic planning, decision making, evaluation and fundraising efforts. Francis provides counsel to the executive director and his team as requested and according to his areas of expertise.

 

Jacob Mwagandi

Board Member

Jacob has been a primary school teacher for nearly 40 years and a pastor since 2012. He has also served as the head teacher at Magarine Primary School since 1995.  Jacob holds certificates in Primary Education and Theology, as well as a diploma in Education Management.

As a Board member, Jacob attends all of Kuhenza’s board meetings and important related meetings. He is also an active participant in the Board’s strategic planning, decision making, evaluation and fundraising efforts. Jacob provides counsel to the executive director and his team as requested and according to his areas of expertise.

 

Susanne King

Board Member

Susanne King has more than 30 years of experience working as a social pedagogue (a teacher and social worker) in Denmark, Tanzania, Zambia, and Kenya. She served both the Danish Council and Danish Refugee Aid as a family counselor and worked as a development professional and nutrition group coordinator in Zambia. Susanne also served as headmistress at the Nordic School in Dar es Salaam and as Deputy Head of a Nature at a kindergarten in Denmark. She has experience working with teenage mothers, families with alcohol issues, and young adults with special needs and has earned diplomas in adult education and business administration.