Abel Mukama
Director Uganda

Abel was born and raised in Bwoga, Uganda. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Statistics from Makerere University. To Abel, BEL  is a way of giving back to the community (Bwoga) and to promote the legacy of long-life readers in honor of his parents who don’t have formal education and professional jobs, but they were able to educate a family of eight siblings through high school and beyond. He believes BEL will give a chance to Bwoga children an opportunity to dream and aspire beyond what they see in Bwoga. 

Hannah Brown
Grants, Development and Economic Analyst
Hannah Brown is currently a research assistant at the Center for Global Development, a non-profit think tank. Originally from Longview, Texas, Hannah attended Brandeis University where she received her bachelor’s degree in Economics and International and Global Studies (IGS) and master’s degree in International Economics and Finance. While pursuing her master’s, Hannah was fortunate to meet her friend Peter who introduced her to the BEL project. A lover of books and education from a young age and passionate about increasing access and opportunities for all, Hannah was inspired and joined the team. She wants to be a lifelong learner, and she hopes the BEL will create many generations of avid learners able to pursue their dreams. 
Isaac Ahimbisibwe
Assistant Director/Community Engagement
Growing up and starting schooling in an impoverished Bwoga village, Isaac worked hard to make it to Makerere University, and now, the University of California, Davis to pursue his PhD. He acknowledges how incredibly lucky he has been. During primary and secondary school, Isaac was rarely the best student in any level. However, unlike his classmates, his parents knew the importance of education, and whenever his dad travelled to a nearby city, he usually bought books for Isaac and his siblings although his dad could barely read English.  His father’s gifts greatly increased Isaac’s love for books. Isaac was most attracted to the BEL idea because it can expose the incredibly unlucky children in Bwoga to books, providing them a reading space and thus changing their aspirations. In addition, BEL will provide space for local women, girls, and youth with space for business and other life skills clubs.
Jeffrey Hadachek
Business, Development and Economic Analyst
Jeff is a Ph.D. student at the University of California, Davis in Agriculture and Resource Economics. He grew up on a farm in North Central Kansas and is generally interested in global agricultural production and policy. Through University study tours, he has traveled in India and South Africa to better understand agricultural systems and their impacts on livelihoods in the developing world. Additionally, he lived in a farming community in rural Peru for a period of time with the International Missions Board. Through these experiences, he has developed a critical eye for social program interventions and ensuring that effort and resources are implemented beneficially and efficiently. Particularly, he’s passionate about education interventions that empower disadvantaged individuals. He believes that BEL can do just that and be a successful model for similar future projects.
John Hagaman
Project Advisor/US Board Member and Informal Writer for the Project News/Updates
John is a Professor Emeritus of English at Western Kentucky University, where he met Peter when Peter enrolled in two of John’s undergraduate classes.   They became friends outside of class due to Peter’s commitment to the BEL project, a commitment which quickly convinced John of the project’s worthiness.  John has been an educator for 52 years and believes involvement in the BEL project is a way to keep alive as an educator while helping others.  He has a bachelor’s degree from Boston University, a master’s from the University of California at Berkeley, and a doctoral degree from Carnegie-Mellon University.
Joseph Kimeu
Co-founder /Communications Director
Joseph is a public school teacher, and a cofounder of BEL. Among his eight African siblings, he is the only one who had the opportunity to pursue education beyond middle school.  Joseph’s education was influenced by individuals such as the principal of Joseph’s primary school, who arranged that Joseph could live closer to school and receive school supplies and other needed materials. The principal and Joseph’s English teacher travelled to Nairobi and convinced Starehe Boys’ Centre, a high school, to admit Joseph.  After graduation, Joseph attended Berea College, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics. Later, Joseph earned a master’s degree in mathematics and economics from Western Kentucky University; he is currently pursuing a Ph. D. there in curriculum and instruction.  Joseph believes strongly in the adage that “education is the great equalizer.”  He considers himself exceedingly fortunate for his educational opportunities. He can easily identify with many of Bwoga’s children, and this is the main reason why he is passionate about BEL.
Lovence Ainembabazi
Head of Gender Empowerment/Culture Programs
Lovence was born and raised in Kagoro-Nyakera, Uganda, a village like Bwoga. Growing up in a rural village, Lovence witnessed the gender inequalities of boys being prioritized for everything including education, leadership, community involvement, and entrepreneurship. These inequalities left girls being prepared to be housewives, food growers, and home managers. Currently, Lovence is a chemistry teacher with a master’s degree from Western Kentucky University and a bachelor’s degree from Makerere University in Kampala. The opportunity to study and work in the United States has opened her eyes to see what an empowered woman can achieve. For example, Lovence has seen significant projects that her female students accomplished. She has also seen female professors receive awards just like their male counterparts. This has left Lovence yearning to transmit her knowledge and skills about empowerment to girls and women in Uganda. Lovence will gradually achieve her dream with BEL projects of empowering women and young females through education, leadership, entrepreneurship, and community involvement.  
Bel Projects Team Members
Osbert Mwijukye
Digital Communications Platforms Manager
Osbert is a computer scientist by training, passionate about software engineering and new media marketing. He has four years of working experience in the digital marketing and brand communications field, three of them with Uganda’s biggest media house, Vision Group, as a New Media Executive. Osbert holds a bachelor’s degree in Information Technology and Computing from Kyambogo University (2012-2015). He is a Level 4 student at the UK Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) and has earned other online certifications in marketing, including the Google Ads certifications 2020. Osbert is excited about the opportunity to contribute to the BEL Project since he was born and raised in the same kind of community that the Project serves. He and Peter Agaba attended the same primary/elementary school, and for six years, the same high school. Osbert clearly knows how urgent the need is to support children in these communities with appropriate reading materials. 
Peter Agaba
Director
Peter was born and raised in Bwoga, Uganda. Today, Peter holds a Master of Arts degree in International Economics and Finance from Brandeis University as well as both master’s and bachelor’s degrees in mathematics from Western Kentucky University. Having grown up in a rural village and being able to come to the United States and attain his degrees, Peter witnessed how economic development impacts differences in one’s quality of life. Peter also realized how fortunate he has been, and as a result, he would like to give back and improve the quality of life in Bwoga through education. For him, the key to education is reading books at a young age. Reading produces knowledge, which—he believes–leads to the empowerment of all citizens.
Sarah Kimeu
Co-founder/Project Treasurer/Member of the board
Sarah is a cofounder of BEL, and a mother of three children. Growing up in Bwoga, Uganda, as the only girl among seven boys, Sarah was not given adequate support in her early formal education. Instead of being taught how to read and write well, she was mainly taught how to perform house chores such as cooking and babysitting.  Luckily for Sarah, her aunt–who earlier had the opportunity to attend school–realized how unsupportive such an environment was and advocated for Sarah to join a boarding elementary school where Sarah thrived. Sarah obtained a high school diploma, a bachelor’s degree from Kyambogo University in Uganda, and later a master’s degree from Western Kentucky University where she secured an athletic scholarship. Sarah believes strongly that if children are to fully develop their potentials, early foundations (including supportive environments) are crucial. This is the main reason why she is so passionate to work with BEL to help the children of Bwoga realize their dreams.

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