Established in 2018
Nuru Nigeria helps Nigerian farmers and their families lift themselves out of extreme poverty by helping farmers move from subsistence to building thriving farmer-owned and farmer-led cooperatives.
Headquartered in northeast Nigeria
Nuru Nigeria works with farmers in northern Adamawa State to end extreme poverty and build resilient communities.
Nuru believes that the best solutions to fighting extreme poverty come from the local community, and we are a 100% locally-led organization with locally-designed solutions built for driving long-term positive impact for our farmers.
Nuru Nigeria Model
From the beginning Nuru Nigeria addresses the problem of extreme poverty with a vision to exit communities as they develop profitable farmer cooperatives.View the Model In Depth
Our Model Highlights
Over a period of five to seven years, Nuru Nigeria works together with local cooperative leaders to help them develop the capacity to stand on their own with solid leadership while providing farmers with opportunities to improve their livelihoods through establishing market linkages for both crops and dairy.
Nuru Nigeria helps farmers build sustainable and profitable farmer cooperatives and increase their incomes. Nuru also provides farmers access to regional and international markets to support their families.
Nuru Nigeria is in the middle of a four-year longitudinal study on community resilience in partnership with the Ray Marshall Center at the University of Texas at Austin which will be completed in 2022. Read more about our impact.
We are a 100% Nigerian organization working to improve the lives and livelihoods of our fellow Nigerians in some of the most vulnerable and marginalized communities in our country.
Nuru Nigeria Strategic Leadership Team
Finance & Administration Manager
Agriculture & Business Development Manager
Leadership & Training Manager
Nuru Nigeria Staff
Field Office Manager
Monitoring & Evaluation Officer
Agriculture & Rural Livelihood Technical Officer
Monitoring & Evaluation Manager
Feven YimerMarketing & Development Director
Feven has an MA in Sociology from Indra Gandhi National Open University and a Bachelors of Education in Biology from Debube University, Dilla College of Teacher Education and Health Sciences. Prior to joining Nuru Ethiopia, Feven worked as a subject teacher at multiple schools for six years in Addis Ababa. Similarly, she has worked as an English Language instructor for Turkish nationals since 2008. Her most recent experience before joining Nuru Ethiopia is working as a business partner at Emas Advert.
Amanda Valladares GeaBusiness Development Manager
Originally from Granada, Andalusia, Amanda has always been passionate about foreign affairs, ID and the role foreign aid plays for developing countries. Amanda earned her BA in French Studies from the University of Granada and the University of Tours, France and holds a Masters in International Relations from the UPF, Barcelona. She lived and worked in Latin America where she gained experience managing projects focused on institutional strengthening and economic development. She has a track record developing proposals for multiple donors worldwide and identifying and securing funding opportunities. Amanda is a native Spanish speaker, proficient in French and a self-taught English speaker.
Kellyn LovellMarketing & Communications Manager
Kellyn began her career in the social sector as an AmeriCorps VISTA Volunteer, building organizational and community capacity to eradicate poverty in Camden, New Jersey. She brings nearly a decade of experience in fundraising, organizational storytelling, and strategic communications to her role at Nuru, having had the privilege of advancing incredible missions, both in the US and around the world. As Marketing & Communications Manager, Kellyn will continue to create clarity from complex ideas, systems, and structures and inspire participation in a more just world through meaningful connections. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Theology from Clarks Summit University.
Mintesinot YifruLeadership & Training Program Manager
Mintesinot joined Nuru in December 2018, and has over 15 years of experience working in education and leadership in both government and nonprofit organizations. He graduated from Addis Ababa University College of Education and Behavioral Science with MA in Curriculum Studies, and began his career working as school teacher in Addis Ababa and in a variety of research and training related roles at Jimma University. Prior to his role at Nuru, he spent four years working with communities in Borena, Oromia who were affected by drought and resource conflicts. Mintesinot is grateful to play an active role in igniting change for both families and whole communities.
Esther WambuiActing Managing Director, Nuru Social Enterprises Ltd.
Tom KibetChief Operations Officer
Fatuma NyanjongRegional Leadership Team: Team Leader, Cooperatives Strategy
Fatuma is excited about supporting smallholder farmers with sustainable solutions to enhance resilience and end extreme poverty. She holds BSc in Agribusiness from Great-Lakes University of Kisumu, has undertaken training in Cooperatives and Gender Equality by Nisped-Israel and the Role of Farmer Organizations in Value Chains and Post-harvest Management by FAO. She is currently pursuing her Masters in entrepreneurship at Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology. Before joining Nuru Kenya she coordinated Enhancing Farmer Entrepreneurship Development Project, World Bank and USAID projects at a National Level Farmer Organization. At Nuru Kenya Fatuma leads the Farmer Cooperative Strategy and is also in charge of Gender Mainstreaming. During her free time, Fatuma is enthusiastic about innovations that solve smallholder farmers’ problems.
Fatuma anapenda sana kusaidia wakulima wadogo na suluhisho endelevu ili kuongeza utulivu na kumaliza umaskini uliokithiri. Anashikilia shahada katika kilimo katika Chuo Kikuu cha Maziwa Makuu cha Kisumu, ana mafunzo katika Ushirikiano na Usawa wa Jinsia na Nisped-Israel, Jukumu la mashirika ya mkulima katika minyororo ya thamani na usimamizi wa baada ya mavuno na FAO. Hivi sasa anafanya shahada ya uzamili katika ujasiriamali katika Chuo Kikuu cha Kilimo na Teknolojia cha Jomo Kenyatta. Kabla ya kujiunga na Nuru Kenya aliratibu Kuongeza Mradi wa Kuendeleza Ujasiriamali wa Wakulima, Benki ya Dunia na miradi ya USAID kwenye Shirika la Wakulima la Taifa. Nuru Kenya Fatuma anaongoza mikakati ya ushirika wa wakulima na yeye pia yuko juu ya utangulizi wa jinsia. Wakati wake wa ziada Fatuma ana shauku ya kupata maoni mapya ambayo yanatatua shida za wakulima wadogo.
George NyamweyaLeadership, Training, & Development Manager
George is passionate about training staff, farmers, and farmer leaders. Since high school, he was involved in student club trainings and this gave him a great zeal in skills transfer. He holds a Master’s degree in Education and International Development from the University College London and a BSc. in Disaster Mitigation with Sustainable Development from Masinde Muliro University. He also holds a teaching certificate from The American Tesol Institute. He is a member of Rift Valley Reading Association and Young African leaders Initiative Alumni, both of which are improving the capacity of leaders in Kenya. As a leadership Program Manager, he is excited when he spots staff and farmers in cooperatives applying trained skills, knowledge, and capabilities to improve their livelihoods.
George ako na ari ya kufunza wafanyakazi, wakulima na viongozi wa wakulima. Tangu akiwa shule ya upili, alihusika katika mafunzo ya vilabu vya wanafunzi na hii ilimpa msukumo katika kuhamasisha utekelezaji wa mafunzo. Ana shahada ya uzamili katika Ualimu na Maendeleo ya Kimataifa kutoka Chuo Kikuu cha London na shahada katika Kupunguza Maafa na Maendeleo Endelevu kutoka Chuo Kikuu cha Masinde Muliro. Yeye pia ana cheti cha ualimu kutoka Taasisi ya Tesol Marekani. Ni mwanachama wa Chama cha Mafunzo ya Kusoma cha Bonde la ufa na chama cha Vijana Viongozi wa Afrika, vyote ambavyo vinaboresha uwezo wa viongozi nchini Kenya. Kama Meneja wa kitengo cha Uongozi, anafurahi wakati anapata wafanyakazi na wakulima katika vyama vya ushirika wanatekeleza ujuzi, maarifa na uwezo kuboresha mapato yao.
Kevin YongoTeam Leader, Livelihoods
Having been raised in a rural set up and developing a passion for farming early in life, Kevin proceeded to pursue a BSc. degree in Agriculture (Agricultural Economics Major) from the University of Nairobi. He then proceeded to work with a number of research organizations before joining Kenya National Farmers Federation as a County Coordinator. Kevin later joined TechforTrade, a Uk Charity organization that sought to promote the role of the middlemen in Agricultural Trade by promoting trade transparency with the smallholder farmers. He later joined JKUAT to pursue an MSc. (Entrepreneurship). As Nuru Kenya’s Team Leader Livelihoods, he works to ensure the livelihoods interventions and strategies align with Nuru’s poverty alleviation goal.
Baada ya kukulia kijijini na kukuza hamu ya kilimo mapema maishani, Kevin alienda kutafuta shahada ya kilimo (Uchumi wa Kilimo) kutoka Chuo Kikuu Cha Nairobi. Kisha aliendelea kufanya kazi na mashirika kadhaa ya utafiti kabla ya kujiunga na shirikisho la wakulima wa kitaifa la Kenya kama mratibu wa Kata. Baadaye, Kevin alijiunga na TechforTrade shirika la UK Charity ambalo lilitaka kukuza jukumu la wazabuni katika Biashara ya Kilimo kwa kukuza uwazi wa biashara na wakulima wadogo. Baadaye alijiunga na JKUAT kutafuta MSc (Ujasiriamali). Kama Kiongozi wa timu ya Nuru Kenya katika kitengo cha riziki, Kevin anafanya kazi ili kuhakikisha kuwa mikakati inaambatana na lengo la Nuru kuondoa umasikini.
Auphamia Nyangi MohochiRegional Leadership Team: Community Outreach & Scaling Coordinator
Auphamia Nyangi Mohochi is passionate about ensuring communities are actively involved in fighting extreme poverty. The desire developed while he was working for Kenya Defense Forces especially during peacekeeping missions in Sierra Leone and Burundi with the United Nations. He holds a Diploma in Intelligent Analysis from SOMI-School of Military intelligence. After having served the Kenya Defense Forces (K.D.F) for 21 years he attained several Certifications for example Certificate in Radio communication, Basic and advance Fire and Rescue, command course, Platoon Sergeant Course, VIP protection and several intelligent courses. As Nuru’s Community Outreach and Expansion Officer, Auphamia is excited and always energized whenever he sees the mobilized groups have coordinated and actively participating in Nuru’s cooperative interventions.
Auphamia Nyangi Mohochi anapenda sana kuhakikisha jamii zinashiriki kikamilifu katika kupambana na umasikini uliokithiri. Hamu ilikua wakati alipokuwa akifanya kazi kwa Kikosi cha Ulinzi cha Kenya haswa wakati wa utunzaji wa amani huko Sierra Leon na Burundi na Umoja wa Mataifa. Anashikilia stashahada katika Uchanganuzi wa Akili kutoka SOMI-Shule ya akili ya kijeshi. Baada ya kutumikia Kikosi cha Ulinzi cha Kenya (KDF) kwa miaka 21 alipata Vyeti kadhaa; Cheti katika mawasiliano ya Redio, elimu kuhusu Moto na Uokoaji, kozi ya amri, kozi ya kikosi cha USergeant, Ulinzi wa VIP na kozi kadhaa za akili. Kama afisa wa Upanuzi wa Jumuiya ya Nuru, Auphamia anafurahi na kila mara hushawishiwa kila anapoona vikundi vilivyohamasishwa vimeratibu na kushiriki kikamilifu kwenye vyama vya ushirika vya Nuru.
Pauline WambetiManaging Director
Pauline Wambeti believes in “not waiting for other people to make the changes for us, but to make the changes ourselves.” Having invested over 15 years in community development in Kenya, Pauline is currently the Managing Director for Nuru Kenya. Prior to joining Nuru, Pauline worked for the United Nations Environment’s Regional office for Africa-Nairobi. She has been a Programme Officer for the National Organization for Peer Educators; a Business Development Officer for K-Rep Bank Ltd and, a Program Facilitator for Doctors of the World. Pauline has studied Social Work and Community Development in addition to post graduate studies in Development Studies and Project Management. She is a 2018 East Africa Acumen Fellow.
Msingi wa uongozi wa Pauline Wambeti ni kwa falsafa ya, ‘tusingoje mabadiliko ya maendeleo kutoka kwa wengine, mbali tujibadilishe na kujiendeleza wenyewe.’ Hivi sasa Pauline ni Mkurugenzi wa Nuru Kenya, shirika lililojikita katika kumaliza umaskini uliokithiri, mashinani mwa nchi ya Kenya. Kabla ya kujiunga na Nuru, Pauline alifanya kazi UNEP katika ofisi kuu ya Afrika jijini Nairobi. Amekuwa pia Afisa wa kuelimisha rika katika shirika la NOPE; Afisa wa Maendeleo ya Biashara katika K-Rep Bank Ltd; na Mkufunzi katika shirika la Doctors of the World-Spain. Pauline amesomea Kazi za Kijamii; Maendeleo ya Jamii na Usimamizi wa Mradi. Pauline alishiriki katika 2018 Acumen East Africa Fellowship.
Birhanu WorkuImpact Program Director
Birhanu joined the Nuru team in 2019 and brings more than 20 years of experience working with both government agencies and nonprofits in Ethiopia. He received his MSc in Agricultural Economics and a background of BA Degree in Economics from Addis Ababa University. Birhanu is also an accredited management consultant with a Professional Competence Certificate from Ethiopian Management Institute and successfully engaged in various national level program and policy assessments and studies hosted by government ministries, international organizations and donors in Ethiopia. Birhanu brings this wealth of experience to Nuru to help his fellow Ethiopians chart a sustainable path to a better future
Alemseged LukasGovernment & Public Relations Director
Alemseged is a graduate of Gondar University and completed a double major in Applied Geography and Environmental Science. Prior to joining Nuru Ethiopia, he worked for the Boreda Woreda agriculture office as an expert and head of office leading a crop production project, managing a watershed project, and advised farmers on animal husbandry. Alemseged decided to join Nuru because he has witnessed the impacts of hunger and extreme poverty and realizes the farmers have the capacity to address their food security problems.
Abiy MesheshaCountry Director
Born and raised in southern Ethiopia, and coming from a smallholder farming community, Abiy has been leading local and international NGOs in Ethiopia for over 16 years. Prior to joining Nuru in March 2018, Abiy worked for Save the Children, where multiple development and emergency programs were running under his leadership. In addition, Abiy worked to coordinate and lead development and emergency response projects for diverse NGOs including FHI360, CordAid, and Médicins Sans Frontiers. Aside from his work in development, Abiy was also Vice-Principal of South Adventist Academy in Hawassa for high school and preparatory classes.
MichaelAgriculture & Business Development Manager
Michael holds a bachelor’s degree in Agriculture and Rural Extension from Ahmadu Bello University Zaria Nigeria and an MBA from Bayero University Kano, Nigeria. Prior to joining Nuru he has over 10 years of work experience in both private sector and development organizations. He enjoys working with smallholder farmers and their families in rural communities and he is passionate about combating poverty especially in Sub-Saharan Africa. In his role at Nuru he works toward building strong partnerships and expanding agribusiness opportunities for vulnerable and marginalized farmer communities.
KerenFinance & Administration Manager
With a master’s degree in business policy from the University of Rivers State and bringing over 15 years of experience to her work at Nuru, Keren is dedicated to making Nuru Nigeria a strong and resilient organization through effective financial and human resource management. Keren’s passion is to support the restoration of family dignity being ravaged by poverty through sustainable empowerment, and she is inspired by seeing farmers and their families filled with hope and opportunity as a result of Nuru’s work.
Amy GamanExecutive Director
Amy has over a decade of experience in leading impact-driven teams and programs. She is passionate about ensuring sustainability and working directly with communities to develop solutions to fight poverty and bring justice for women, youth, and children in Nigeria. In addition to her role leading Nuru Nigeria since 2018, Amy serves as a ONE Champion in Nigeria Chief of Party for the Building Sustainable Livelihoods Program sponsored by USAID, and has received various awards including Adamawa State Humanitarian Ambassador of the year, recognition by the British Council through the Northeast Hub, and has been named a Perennial Fellow.
SimonLeadership & Training Manager
Simon holds a B. Tech in Urban and Regional Planning as well as an M. Tech in infrastructure along with several certifications in program design and project management. Simon joined the fight to end extreme poverty after several years of being a tutor in higher institutions, he believes knowledge creates wealth. After experience living as a refugee in northern Cameroon during the time when his home community was part of Boko Haram’s caliphate, Simon is passionate about providing the people of northeastern Nigeria opportunities for hope and meaningful choices.
Elizabeth AthertonChief Operating Officer
Elizabeth earned her BS in Business Administration and her Masters of Accountancy at The University of Montana and holds Certified Public Accountant and Chartered Global Management Accountant licenses. She provided audit and advisory services to public companies, nonprofits, and governmental organizations at KPMG and taught auditing and pursued doctoral studies at The University of Arkansas before joining Nuru in 2013. At Nuru, she oversees the business operations and development teams as well as Nuru’s diversity initiatives. She received the InsideNGO Excellence in Finance Award in 2016 and advocates for the eradication of extreme poverty as a Congressional District Leader for the ONE Campaign.
Emily McLaughlinHuman Resources Director
Emily has over a decade of experience in human resources, training and teaching. Since joining Nuru in 2010, she has been passionate about supporting Nuru’s incredible staff and striving to make Nuru one of the best companies to work for. While Emily earned her BA in English and Communications at Concordia University in the sunny city of Irvine, CA, she’s a Washington native at heart, and you can find her always looking for excuses to get outdoors with her hubby and three crazy kiddos. During her time at Nuru, she has been instrumental in creating a healthy culture that lives out its values in service to communities living in extreme poverty.
Tacy LayneDevelopment Associate
A lifelong West Virginia resident, Tacy graduated from Fairmont State University in 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in English. Following graduation, she worked as a marketing administrator for an advertising publication. In 2015, inspired by travel to Malawi, Africa, Tacy began work in the nonprofit sector as a writer/editor for an international nonprofit organization dedicated to addressing the orphan crisis. Moved by the realization that extreme poverty is the leading cause of family disruption, Tacy joined Nuru International in 2018 to support fundraising efforts, donor relations, and communications. In her spare time, she enjoys training for marathons, whitewater rafting, skiing, and occasional foraging.
Scott MasseyRegional Support Team Director, Nigeria
Scott is an entrepreneur and executive leader with experience in security, healthcare and finance, beginning his career as a US Army officer, and continuing through roles as a US State Department contractor, and principle owner in multiple startup companies. Scott has been engaged in work on the African continent since the early 1990’s, focused on ways to increase the impact of various development and security initiatives. He brings that wealth of experience to his work at Nuru, serving vulnerable and marginalized farming communities in northeast Nigeria. Scott graduated with a BA in History from The Citadel and an MA in Diplomacy from Norwich University. Scott and his wife Kristy reside in South Carolina, and have three children and one grandchild.
Matt LinealChief Program Officer
Matt received his BA in Government and Spanish from Lawrence University and a MS in Forest Sciences from Colorado State University. He then began his international service career in rural Honduras, first as a Peace Corps Volunteer and later with The Nature Conservancy. Over several years punctuated by severe challenges for Hondurans, his experiences were eye opening as to how people navigate the complexities of rural life. Matt was drawn to Nuru International in 2011 with the resolve to take on tough challenges and has been humbled and amazed to be part of the transformational impact of local leaders. As Nuru’s Chief Program Officer, Matt continues to promote the agency of rural communities as the foundation of meaningful positive change.
Lee SchofieldSecurity Program Specialist, Nigeria
Lee started his career of service in the British Army and now contributes at Nuru as security and development professional. He brings significant prior experience to his efforts at Nuru, previously working in dynamic environments in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, and Somalia to provide on-the-ground leadership capacity development and sound security strategies for and with local development professionals. By building strong local partnerships and initiating programs of positive change together with the people he serves, Lee helps whole communities develop strong networks, and contribute directly to their own enhanced safety, security, and trust.
Emily PlauchéAccounting Manager
A native of Louisiana, Emily is a Certified Public Accountant who acquired her BS in Accounting from Louisiana State University before pursuing her MS in International Security from the School of Public Policy at University College London where she focused specifically on reconciliation between ethnic groups after mass crime. Emily then relocated to Charlotte, NC to work as an auditor in the Banking and Capital Markets space for PwC before transitioning into the nonprofit sector where she worked first as the Director of Accounting and Subsidiary Controller for a national nonprofit before joining Nuru International. Emily’s passion is for underrepresented populations locally and globally and she is honored to be part of this team.
Dena BunnelImpact & Markets Specialist, Nigeria
Growing up on a dairy farm in Kansas, agriculture has been central to Dena’s life and work. She holds M.S. degrees in agricultural and resource economics and international agricultural development from the University of California, Davis, as well as a B.S. in agricultural communications and a B.A. in political science from Kansas State University. Before joining Nuru, Dena worked to build agricultural capacity on three continents with the Post-Harvest Loss Innovation Lab at Kansas State University and in Afghanistan while working for the USDA. She is also pursuing a PhD in security studies, further researching intervention points to break the cycle of conflict and poverty through agricultural economic growth.
Casey HarrisonImpact & Learning Director
Casey was born and raised on a farm in rural Maryland, and has worked at the nexus of smallholder farming in Africa and natural resource management since 2009. Prior to Nuru, he contributed as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Zambia where he served as an agricultural extension agent, and worked with World Wildlife Fund (WWF) on mitigating the negative environmental and social impacts of agricultural production and value chains with a focus on East and Southern Africa. He has completed a dual MA in Natural Resource Management and International Affairs from American University in Washington DC and the University for Peace in Costa Rica, and in his free time, Casey enjoys travelling, backpacking, biking, and live music of all kinds.
Brian von KrausSecurity Director
Brian graduated from Boston College with a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy and served in the Marine Corps for 15 years as an infantry officer where he had the opportunity to work for a variety of infantry, reconnaissance, and special operations units during multiple combat deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan. After leaving the Marine Corps, Brian graduated UCLA’s Executive MBA program and is currently enrolled in UC Berkeley’s Masters in Information and Cybersecurity program. He is committed to protecting Nuru’s impact on communities overseas. Brian is an avid traveler and loves spending his free time outdoors.
Billy WilliamsStrategic Partnerships Director
As passionate about ending extreme poverty as he is about his home state of West Virginia, Billy developed a hunger for listening to and telling good stories at a young age. He received his BA in both Chemistry and English and an MA in English from West Virginia University as well as an Executive Certificate in Nonprofit Leadership from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. As Nuru’s lead advocate and storyteller, Billy has been invited to share at events around the globe. If you are seated next to him on a plane, or trapped with him in an elevator, he’ll be sure to invite you to join our efforts, too.
Aerie ChangalaChief Executive Officer
Aerie has been leading Nuru as its CEO since 2020. Prior to assuming his current role, Aerie has been part of Nuru’s leadership since the organization’s earliest days. He led the design of the Nuru model and scaling for the past decade. Aerie’s passion for serving vulnerable and marginalized communities comes from his time serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer in northern Burkina Faso. Having spent the majority of his adult life living in Europe and sub-Saharan Africa, Aerie has traveled extensively, speaks five languages, and brings a truly global perspective to his work at Nuru. Aerie earned his BA in International Affairs from John Cabot University (Rome, Italy); his MA in International Conflict Analysis from University of Kent (Canterbury, UK); and completed Stanford’s University’s Graduate School of Business Executive Program for Nonprofit Leadership.
Yemisrach SintayeuFinance & Administration Coordinator
Yemisirach joined the Nuru Ethiopia team in March 2018. She received her BA in Accounting and Finance from Arba Minch University in Accounting and Finance in 2011 and for seven years served as an Accountant at Southwest Evangelical Churches, Mekane Yesus Synod Development and Social Service Commission. She is passionate about working to improve the health and living conditions of people living in extreme poverty, and especially seeing women and girls have opportunities to chart a path toward a better life. She has substantial experience in accounting and financial management.
Nuru Nigeria’s Financials are managed by PricewaterhouseCoopers accounting agency to ensure rigor and transparency. Through this innovative partnership, our team can focus our efforts more on adapting, improving, and scaling our operations.