Togo Administrative Staff
Jonas Nouhoum Akondo
Program Administrator, Togo
Jonas is honored to join the Pathways Team as a Program Administrator. He most recently completed a Peace Corps Internship for six months where, among other skills, he learned the importance of sending girls to school. His objectives are to help promote Pathways' vision of girls’ education and their empowerment. His commitment to women’s education in Togo began at the University of Lome where he earned a Bachelor’s of Art in English degree with a focus on Gender and Development. In order to help Pathways achieve its objectives, Jonas is determined to work hard. One initiative he would like to start is to foster a relationship with government officials, especially to contribute to Pathways’ locally-based funding. In addition, because of his commitment to helping girls and women to be educated, he would like to work with volunteers on life skills training.
After completing a degree in accounting, Yashmine simultaneously earned a BA in English and a Masters of Finance. Prior to joining the Pathways Togo team, she worked with NGOs like Global Concerned and SOS Village d'Enfants where she learned that no matter how small the contribution, it greatly benefits the individual. Her goal now is to help Pathways Togo maintain financial health, establish fiscal procedures and assist in securing funding that ensures the future of our organization.
Born in Togo, Ablavi left her native country in 1996 with her family due to her father’s position as an International staff member for the UNDP/WFP. She pursued her education in six different countries (Benin, Guinea/Conakry, Kenya, France where she obtained a Master’s Degree in International and European Law, and Canada where she obtained a Graduate Diploma in Management). Through all her adventures, she always tries to combine her love for travels with her dedication to International Aid and Human Rights issues. She volunteered and worked within various NGOs protecting Children’s Rights throughout Africa (Egypt, Burkina Faso), Europe (Belgium, France) and Canada. Recently back to Togo, her main objective while joining Pathways Togo is to ensure that our local girls understand that there are many more options/alternatives opened to them other than just being someone’s wife or mother. In her spare time, she LOVES reading thrillers/ crime fiction novels and was probably a detective in some past life.
Peace Corps Volunteers
Grant Writing and Special Projects
Paige McKinsey serves as a Community Health and Malaria Prevention (CHAMP) Peace Corps volunteer in the village of Bapure in the Kara region of Togo. In village, she works at the local clinic in maternal and newborn care, and she actively engages with youth in her community through a girls’ health club, an English tutoring group, and an afterschool activities club. Outside of village, she volunteers at a home for girls who have escaped forced marriage. Paige graduated in 2015 from the University of Mary Washington with a double major in Women and Gender Studies and International Affairs. Throughout her college career, she interned at her local rape crisis center and worked for the Feminist Majority Foundation as a global health and human rights intern. Having written her senior thesis on girls’ education initiatives in Kenya, Paige strongly believes the path to development is through the education and empowerment of girls, and she is committed to serving this mission through her life’s work.
Kansola joins the Pathways team with a background in international development and a breadth of experience in which she has developed project frameworks, conducted high-level strategic research and data analysis, and applied effective project management methodologies to projects in both public and private capacities. Most recently, she worked as a program associate for a globally-recognized research institute in Washington, DC where she conducted impact evaluations for a number of government systems and international development initiatives. In addition, Kansola's experience at the U.S. Department of State afforded her the opportunity to learn the intricacies of providing foreign support to some of the most marginalized populations in the world. Kansola is of Nigerian descent, and earned her bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Rhetoric from the University of California, Berkeley. She currently serves as an English and Gender Education volunteer in southeast Togo, where she promotes women's and girls' empowerment through targeted trainings and relevant capacity building activities.
Nathan is an English and Gender Education Peace Corps Volunteer serving in Blitta, a prefecture in the Central Region of Togo. Nathan is currently teaching three courses at CEG Blitta-Gare I, a local middle school. In addition, he has established a number of auxiliary education initiatives in Blitta; including a weekly English program on Radio Étincelle and the Blitta English Teacher’s Association. Hailing from St. Paul, Minnesota, Nathan graduated from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities in 2012, with degrees in Communication Studies and Political Science. Since graduation, he has spent time working in the Office of Social Responsibility at UnitedHealth Group, teaching English in Seoul, S. Korea, and most recently working and living in Melbourne, Australia. In his free time, Nathan enjoys assembling IKEA furniture, receiving free t-shrits, and going up the down escalator.
Born to a mother from Iowa and a father from Burkina Faso, Jessica spent her childhood in Benin, Burkina, and the U.S. Thus, Jessica is thrilled to return to West Africa for two years as a Peace Corps volunteer. She currently serves as an English and Gender Education volunteer in the village of Salimdè, located in the Central region of Togo. Before coming to Togo, Jessica taught English in a low-income suburb of Paris, and also interned with Catholic Relief Services’ Farmer-to-Farmer program. She graduated with a double concentration in French and African History from Brown University in 2014, where she was a member of the women’s rugby team. Jessica is excited to join the Pathways team and looks forward to supporting Togo’s brightest female talent.
Liliana serves as an English and Gender Education Peace Corps volunteer in Togo, West Africa. Born in the Dominican Republic and raised in the Bronx, New York, she earned her degree in Public Relations with a double minor in Theater and Hispanic Studies at Mount Saint Mary College. During her undergraduate studies, she actively participated in her college's theater and international programs. Having learned English through artistic channels as a child, she successfully launched an art awareness campaign at her college to promote the enriching values of the arts via film, photography and theater. Her appreciation for the arts allowed her to intern at several theater companies as a communications apprentice in New York City. Today, she finds herself integrating into the village of Kparatao, located in the Central region of Togo, teaching English and promoting gender equality. She hopes to expand her soccer skills on the field through the girl's soccer team she is co-training.
Aidan Isaac Cooney graduated summa cum laude with a 4.0 GPA in 2014 from Arizona State University with a Bachelor in Sustainability, a minor in Justice Studies and a certificate in Human Rights. He is serving in the Peace Corps from 2016-2018 as an Environmental Action and Food Security Volunteer in Anié, a large ville in the Plateaux Region of Togo, West Africa. His passion is to continue his work in the realms of sustainability, human rights, and film. Though he took some electives for producing documentaries in college, he is largely self-taught in video production. His first film, a 5-minute collaborative student documentary on sustainability titled "Garden City", was nominated for a Student Emmy from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. In 2015, Aidan and his wife, MaLinda Zimmerman-Cooney (a Health Volunteer in Togo), started a non-profit film company named Cooney Films. Their mission is to nurture a necessary paradigm shift in support of global sustainability and universal human rights through educational documentary film production that challenges social norms and the systems that support structural violence. He has proficient knowledge of the principles of sustainability with strong focuses on social, environmental, and economic justice. As for media, he has been a huge movie buff his entire life and loves having the ability now to tell powerful and motivating stories through the art of film. He joined the Pathways Togo team because he feels most of the world's problems can indeed be solved through the education and empowerment of women worldwide.