Meet the Organizers

 WWEC Founders: Ashley Lewis, Kathleen Tedford and Elise Bond

2013 National Coordinators:

Melissa Bernard is a Girls’ Education and Empowerment (GEE) Volunteer serving in Sotouboua, Togo. At her post, Melissa facilitates monthly mothers’ club meetings in different neighborhoods where she talks to women about nutrition, the importance of girls’ education, and teaches income-generating activities. She also runs several youth clubs at her site to help girls build self-confidence and decision making skills. Melissa graduated from Saint Louis University with a degree in Communication and Women’s Studies. Before joining the Peace Corps, she worked in fundraising at Teach For America – St. Louis.

Katy Todd is a Small Enterprise Development (SED) Volunteer in the northern Savannah region of Togo. In Dapaong, she collaborates with a variety of female artisans to promote their products both in and outside of Togo. Additionally, she works with several women’s groups in the area to help develop their small businesses and encourage saving money through Village Savings and Loans Associations (VSLA). Originally from Northern California, Katy graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles with degrees in international economics and political science.

2013 Programming, Monitoring & Evaluation Chair:

Grace Magruder, a SED Volunteer, is based in Kpalimé, Togo where she works with local artisans, including her main counterpart Chantal Donvide and company, Aklala Batik. During her time in Togo, she also hopes to promote the ecotourism industry of Kpalimé. Gracie served as a Volunteer in Mindelo, Cape Verde from July 2011 until its graduation and arrived in Togo this last summer to complete her second year of service. Originally from Maryland, Grace studied political science at the University of Florida. Prior to Peace Corps, she had the pleasure of working with the Department of the Interior, State Department and as a Congressional Liaison for RTI International.

Host Country Programming and Logistics Liaison:

DJINADJA Akouavi Mireille is the Executive Director of the NGO Pour un Monde Meilleur (For a Better World, or P2M) based in the Plateaux Region of Togo, the Amou Prefecture. P2M works mainly for the promotion and protection of human rights for women and children. They help mobilize women and children to increase public awareness of human rights issues. She also works frequently with Peace Corps Togo on a variety of topics. Originally from the Plateau Region (Prefecture Amu), she is Akposso. Mireille studied psychology at the University of Lomé and also received a vocational training certificate (BTS) in Project Management in Yaounde, Cameroon.

2013 Media Correspondent:

Lydia Grate (Assibi) is a SED Volunteer serving in the quite hilly little town called Bafilo. There, she tries to include women and young girls into her work. She has worked on several national projects/activities so far in her service, including WWEC 2012. Just before arriving in Togo, Lydia graduated from Arkansas Tech University with degrees in broadcast journalism, public relations and speech communication.

2 thoughts on “Meet the Organizers

  1. Jonnett says:

    This is a great project ladies! I was a health volunteer from 01 – 03 in Somde, a small village 5K up the mountain near Pagouda. Kristine – I hope you are familiar with it, and if not you should definitely visit on a Thursday for their big market (and tell them Pitikibelo said hello)! I had a PCV colleague in Pagouda (GEE volunteer) who worked closely with Georgette (not sure of her last name, but she is an AMAZING woman and if you don’t already work with her, you should find her!). Bonne chance and bon travail! Et…pilaba tassi!

  2. Kelly says:

    You ladies are amazing. Thank you for the inspiration and the work you are doing for Togolese women!

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