About Global Kids
OUR DYNAMIC STAFF
Global Kids staff members are full-time, highly skilled educators with extensive experience in youth development and global education. All GK staff hold a bachelor’s degree at minimum, and most senior staff members have advanced degrees in such fields as international relations, education, social work, and public administration.
Global Kids staff speak over 20 languages collectively, including Spanish, Haitian Creole, French, KiSwahili, Hindi, Wolof, Urdu, Punjabi, Cantonese, and many have experience working or studying abroad. GK educators participate in on-going professional development and are involved in program design and decision-making. They serve as mentors who provide personal support to youth who often do not receive it at home or in the classroom. Scroll down to view staff bios!
Nathalie was born in Colombia and moved to New York when she was a teenager. She graduated from Syracuse University with a B.A in International Relations and Economics. After graduation, she joined Peace Corps and moved to Thailand where she worked as a community developer/ foreign language teacher. In Thailand, she had the opportunity to work with children from elementary schools to high schools in many capacities such as: teaching English as a foreign language and facilitated workshops focusing on leadership skills. After her service in Thailand, she came back to New York and obtained an MPA from Wagner School of Public Service at NYU. After graduation, she worked with the immigrant population in Queens. Nathalie is fluent in Spanish and can have a basic conversation in Thai. In her free time, Nathalie enjoys reading fiction and watching TED talk videos.
A native of Durham, North Carolina, Ahmed began his career in youth development at Marbles Kids Museum in Raleigh NC. After graduating in 2014 from North Carolina State University with a degree in international Relations, Ahmed decided to spend one year as an AmeriCorps volunteer with City Year New York where he served as an attendance coordinator, organizing several initiatives to increase student attendance. He returned to North Carolina and worked as a photography technician before spending some time traveling in the Dominican Republic, Italy, Germany and England. He is a native Arabic speaker and as spent time in both Sudan and Egypt. Ahmed is a part of our community schools team at PS 96, one of his roles is to facilitate our Digital Learning and Leadership program.
In 2015, Genesis completed a BA in Anthropology and International Studies at City College of New York. Throughout her career in youth development, she has contributed to the missions of various multicultural education based programs including One To World Global Classroom and Reach The World. Genesis has also devoted her efforts in the area of social emotional learning through her work in Morningside Center for teaching social responsibility specifically through their "Peace from A to Z" programming. Her hope is to continue empowering the voice of the youth worldwide now and into their future.
Director, Washington DC Program
Wida is thrilled to be returning to the youth development sector after spending fours years leading public policy initiatives on local, state, and national levels. She has been a nonprofit leader in social justice, youth development, program management, coalition building and public policy fields for over 11 years. Most recently, Wida was the Immigrant Rights Program Director at the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum (NAPAWF). She lead NAPAWF’s gender-based national immigration campaign that successfully shifted political narratives to include immigrant women’s issues as a central issue in the latest Congressional legislative proposals. Prior to her public policy work, Wida was the Program Director at South Asian Youth Action (SAYA!) where she played a key leadership role in the organization’s growth from a single-site program to a nationally recognized multiple-site agency serving over 500 immigrant youth and families annually. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from the University of California, San Diego, and two management certificates from the Institute for Non-profit Management at Columbia Business School. She was born in Kabul, Afghanistan, and has also lived in India, Germany, California, and New York. Currently, she resides in the greater Washington, DC area.
Founder and President Emerita
Carole is the Founder of Global Kids, Inc and served as the Executive Director for 21 years. Beginning September 1, 2010, Carole has assumed a new role on staff as Founder and President Emerita and remains a member of the Global Kids Board of Directors. A former teacher of social studies and history on both the high school and community college levels, she was coordinator of Women's Studies and the Graduate Program in Women's History at Sarah Lawrence College from 1979 until 1987. There she organized campus and community conferences and worked to promote the integration of women’s history into formal and public history programming. Her Master’s thesis, A New Force in Politics (1979) was later published as Votes and More for Women (1983), as were other articles relating the history of women activists. Carole created Global Kids while serving as Managing Director of the Foreign Policy Association. She served as the Executive Director of Global Kids since establishing it as a fully independent, nonprofit educational organization in 1991.
Carole was named a 2006 and 2007 Purpose Prize Fellow by Civic Ventures and is a recipient of the "Spirit of Anne Frank Award" bestowed by the Anne Frank Foundation. She received the Sarah Lawrence College Distinguished Alumna Award for Achievement and the College of Notre Dame's Service to Society Award, given to an alumna who applies "her education, initiative and humanity to socially useful ends in the community, nation, or world." She is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Board of Directors of the Institute of Play. She holds a BA in History from the College of Notre Dame and an MA in Women's History from Sarah Lawrence College.
Director of Curriculum and Outcomes Evaluation
Elizabeth Bishop is an educator, researcher and youth advocate. She holds a PhD in Language, Literacy and Culture from the University of Pittsburgh, a MST in Adolescent Education from Pace University, a MA in Literary and Cultural Studies from Carnegie Mellon University and a BA in Planned Studies from Ithaca College. Previously, Bishop worked on faculty at Ithaca College, as Deputy Director at the Center for Institutional and Social Change at Columbia Law School and as Assistant Director of the Peace Corps Fellows Program at Teachers College, Columbia University. Originally from Newtown, Connecticut, she began her career as a classroom teacher in the Bronx and has taught and served in leadership positions across NYC public schools and youth development organizations. Besides her work at GK, Bishop also teaches on the faculty of the Youth Studies Program at the CUNY School of Professional Studies and directs the Drop Knowledge Project where she conducts research on literacy and activism. Her first book "Becoming Activist: Critical Literacy and Youth Organizing" was released by Peter Lang in 2015 and her second book "Embodying Theory: Epistemology, Aesthetics and Resistance" will be out in 2018.
Yvonne M. Brathwaite
Director of Programs
Yvonne Martínez Brathwaite is a native New Yorker, raised in East Harlem. Prior to joining Global Kids she managed and provided professional development, coaching and capacity building services for nearly 20 years at Partnership for After School Education (PASE). She serves as a member of a STEM Education Network and volunteers her time as a member of the Board of Trustees at International School of Brooklyn where her son attends school. Yvonne started her career working directly with youth, running social service and leadership development programs. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Wesleyan University and a Master of Public Administration from New York University. In 2013 she was honored by the Tanenbaum Center with the Adam Solomon Award for Excellence which recognizes education leaders who are committed to fostering and creating equitable and inclusive learning environments.
Born in Queens and raised in Brooklyn and Long Island, John comes to Global Kids with a range of experience working with youth. He has taught meditation and mindfulness in public schools as well as at Rikers Island, coached soccer, and taught young people how to bike and stay safe while riding in the street. He has undergraduate degrees in Child Development and Clinical Psychology from Tufts University and an MA in Politics & Education from Columbia Teachers College. Passionate about art, writing, and a range of social issues, John brings to GK a commitment to creatively engage students where they're at, while supporting and challenging them to own and expand their power as social change agents.
Andrea Canova is originally from Boulder, Colorado and moved to Queens, New York in 2015 by way of AmeriCorps VISTA. She attended Colorado State University, where she obtained her B.A. in International Studies with a focus on Latin America and a minor in Spanish. She spent a year in Buenos Aires, Argentina and Heredia, Costa Rica, where she was able to hone in her Spanish skills. Andrea's passion for working with youth in the non-profit sector can be seen through her work as an assistant site supervisor for the YMCA of Boulder Valley, an instructional para-educator at Eldorado K-8 School, and through her work at the New York Hall of Science building capacity, leading homework help sessions, and introducing youth to STEM careers as the STEM Program Coordinator. Andrea enjoys volunteering as a t-ball coach for Harlem RBI each summer, exploring the world, trying new things, and embracing the outdoors. She misses the Rocky Mountains very much and tries to go back as much as possible!
Joseph is an East New York Brooklyn native, born to a Jamaican family, who currently resides in Staten Island. He earned his B.S. in Mathematics from the College of Staten Island (CUNY). While attending college, he worked for several mentoring programs including The Liberty Partnerships Program, The Black Male Initiative Program, and The Collegiate Science and Technology Program, all of which encourage high school students to further their education by attending college. He has traveled to Singapore, Thailand, Hong Kong, the Ivory Coast, Egypt, Amsterdam, and has also lived in Israel. In his free time, Joseph enjoys exercising, playing basketball, and listening to reggae music.
Jessica Ramos Cuttone
Director of High School Programs
Jessica is a Bronx native currently residing in Queens, New York. She has an Associate’s degree in Liberal Arts from CUNY’s Hostos Community College in the Bronx. From there she earned the Serrano Scholarship to study the major of her choice at Columbia University’s School of General Studies, a school that presents the opportunity for students who have a gap in education between High School and College to obtain a traditional degree at an Ivy League Institution. After obtaining her B.A. in Social Cultural Anthropology, the Serrano Scholarship led Jessica to pursue a Master’s in International Affairs with a focus on Urban Social Policy at Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs. Jessica’s experiences attending high school as an at-risk, homeless teen inspired her to her work towards educating and empowering vulnerable populations around the city. She has created and implemented educational programs for at-risk youth and new immigrant youth and adults in various capacities over the last ten years.
Marcus Del Valle
Digital Learning and Leadership Trainer
A Brooklyn bred Global Kids alumnus, Marcus is passionate about growth through positivity and his work in Youth Development. After gaining his B.A. in Psychology and English Writing from the College of Staten Island, Marcus joined Global Kids with the goal of passing on the lessons he learned from Global Kids while attending high school. Marcus has worked with students of all ages from kindergarten to undergraduate levels, teaching subjects like health and recreation, conflict resolution, and running creative writing workshops. Marcus attributes much of his scholarly curiosity to the comic books, anime and video games he grew up with. As a youth development educator, Marcus aims to bring knowledge and creativity to the youth around NYC. As a writer and creative, and a member of GK's Digital Learning and Leadership team, he is dedicated to equipping students with the skills and creativity to become powerful global assets in a growing technological world.
Devin was born and raised in New York City. As an award recipient of the Posse Foundation Scholarship, Devin graduated from DePauw University with a B.A. in Communication. While in college Devin participated on DePauw’s Track and Field team, along with becoming a member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Incorporated. After graduating from DePauw, he worked at the College of Staten Island (CUNY) as the Program Coordinator for the Office of Access and Success Programs. These programs encourage high school students to further their education by attending college. He also has extensive experience teaching and mentoring youth in New York City public schools, nonprofits and community-based organizations.
Youth Development Specialist
Damaris is a Queens native. She graduated with her Bachelor’s degree in History with minors in African American and Women’s Studies from the State University of New York at Oswego in 2012. Upon graduation she began teaching Social Studies at the historic Boys and Girls High School located in Bedford Stuyvesant. Damaris is currently working on her Master’s Degree in History and Education. Her thesis focuses on desegregation and student voice. Damaris’ love for young people and access to education bought her to Global Kids, Inc. For most of her young adult life she has dedicated her time to youth activism, developing youth as stakeholders, and youth participation in their local community boards.
A graduate of New York University’s Center for Global Affairs, Mr. Emmanuel has more than 10 years of experience in the nonprofit area and possesses extensive experience in collaboration building, strategic planning, fundraising, and marketing. He has served as Program Director for Cypress Hills LDC’s Young Adult Internship Program (YAIP) and Public Allies New York. Because of his various local community and international interests, he has pursued several independent projects, such as producing his own segment on the renowned radio station WBA and leading youth programs in Senegal.
Mr. Emmanuel is the recipient of the United States State Department’s NSEP/Boren Fellowship. In fall 2014, Mr. Emmanuel received the AMERICORPS LOCAL LEADER AWARD from Public Allies. He is also a SOCAP16 scholarship winner.
Born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, Reavey moved to New York last summer. She currently serves as Global Kids’ Development Coordinator. Reavey holds a B.A. in Political Science and Educational Studies from Macalester College in Saint Paul, MN. Prior to her work at Global Kids, she worked or non-profit organizations including Hispanics in Philanthropy, Clinton Global Initiative, and Parque de la Memoria in Argentina. She has long been interested in the intersection between public policy, educational equity, and youth development. During her undergraduate career, Reavey conducted research on teacher motivation, gender, classroom-based educational equity, and education policy. In her free time, Reavey looks forward to long road trips, watching documentaries, playing board games, and spending time outdoors with her friends and family.
A New York native and experiential educator, David has 10 years towards a life-long investment in making richer connections between education, family, and community. He is skilled in curriculum design, youth mentorship and working with group dynamics. His passion for dissolving institutional racism and improving human rights led him to pursue his MA in Peace and Human Rights education from Columbia University Teacher’s College after completing his BA in political science from University of Maryland. David knows that teenagers can be the biggest emotional risk-takers on earth. His goal as an educator is to support peer-led platforms that engage youth to apply their risk to social action and through creative processes. Before joining Global Kids, David spent the last five years facilitating youth in non-traditional settings; from Nicaragua to the Catskill Mountains. Whether he is crossing an ocean or a neighborhood, David is a conscientious traveler eager to learn from young people. On his free time, David can be found seeking out hidden green spaces in New York City.
A graduate of the University of California, Davis, Sarah holds a degree in Spanish with minors in Education, Human Development, and English. During college, she spent a year studying in Spain at the Universidad de Granada. In Germany and Pearl Harbor, Sarah worked with military dependents with Camp Adventure, an organization that runs youth programming on military bases and embassies across the world. Her passion for literacy education led her to work as a UC Davis Writing Tutor and as a Teaching Assistant for the Student Transitional Enrichment Program, a bridge program for first-generation college freshmen. Upon graduation, Sarah moved to Brooklyn, where she completed a year of service as an Education Justice Fellow at Repair the World. Over a period of 11 months, her team successfully engaged 9,000 New Yorkers in service. She also served as a Community Engagement Fellow at Reading Partners, a literacy tutoring nonprofit. This past summer, Sarah worked as a Social Justice Program Fellow at Brandeis Collegiate Institute, leading trainings and educational programs for participants from all over the world. Some of her happiest times have been volunteering as a swim coach with Special Olympics and singing in choirs in California and abroad.
Community School Program Manager
Michael is committed to a world with social and economic justice. He most recently worked in development with City Year Milwaukee and volunteered with Showing Up for Racial Justice as a racial justice workshop facilitator. Michael previously worked for nearly four years at Pan-African Community Association in Milwaukee providing after school programming and case management for refugee youth and families from Africa and Asia. He is also a graduate of AmeriCorps service with City Year, Public Allies, and VISTA, and he has his BA in Journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and a graduate certificate in Nonprofit Management and Leadership from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. In his free time, Michael likes to listen to podcasts, read, and get involved in organizing and educational events in the city.
Evie joined Global Kids in 1996 as Director of Training and served as Deputy Director/Director of Programs for 12 years before her appointment as Executive Director in September 2010. Over the years, Evie has helped oversee the development, supervision, and expansion of GK's programs in New York City schools and has designed numerous special projects for youth and educators. She spearheaded the writing of Teen Action, a service learning curriculum grounded in GK methodology, for New York City's Department of Youth and Community Development, which is being used at over 50 sites by other community based organizations. Evie has also provided professional development training for youth workers and educators throughout the city and in other parts of the world, including Croatia and England. For over 12 years, Evie has worked with team of GK Leaders to develop and produce the annual Global Kids Youth Conference, which brings together over 600 youth and adults for a day of peer led workshops and social action. Evie has a BS in Journalism from Boston University and an MA in Educational Theater from New York University. Evie was a Rockefeller Foundation Next Generation Leadership Fellow and is a member at the Council on Foreign Relations. Prior to working at GK, she worked as Service Leader for ASPIRA of New York and a Master Actor/Teacher for the Creative Arts Team. In addition to her work at Global Kids, Evie is actively involved in community affairs and received the New York City Council's Pacesetter award for outstanding women. She speaks fluent Greek and is proficient in French.
A native to the U.S. Virgin Islands, Johnniersi--known to most as Jojo--moved to New York in pursuit of higher education. She attended Juniata College in Pennsylvania where she received a B.A. in Communications and Politics and minored in French. She then returned to New York to gain her MPA from John Jay College. Upon the completion of her masters she left the United States to serve in the Peace Corps as a Economic Development Specialist in Peru. She enjoys food, travel and is a lover of all things diverse. Johnniersi is beyond thrilled to be a part of Global Kids.
Felix was born in the Dominican Republic and grew up in the Bronx. He obtained a bachelor’s degree from CUNY Herbert H. Lehman College in Sociology with a minor in Psychology. In college, he was part of a club at Lehman College called Seek Helping Hand that focused on community service in the community and city-wide on issues such as, poverty, healthy food options, education, and many more. By participating in this club, he was able to work with youth from his high school running small workshops on transitioning from high school to college. In his last year of college, he joined the CUNY Service Corps giving him the opportunity to intern for Global Kids. As a GK intern, Felix was able to hone his facilitator’s skills and it allowed him to eventually gain a full-time position in the organization.
Assistant Director, Washington , DC Program
Libby received a BA in International Studies and Political Science from Muhlenberg College and is a MA candidate at the SIT Graduate Institute in Conflict Transformation with a focus on Youth Programming. During college, she volunteered and worked with various youth-serving organizations and schools to provide arts education and globally-focused enrichment. For three years, she attended the U.N. Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues and worked with delegates to document the proceedings. Libby moved to New York City after college where she worked with high school youth to provide afterschool and summer programs for elementary students. Following her graduate coursework in conflict and social justice, she facilitated peacebuilding dialogues and activism workshops for youth participating in exchange programs from all over the world. Most recently, before joining Global Kids, she managed a teen center for the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Washington, FBR Branch @ THEARC. She has traveled and studied throughout Europe, Eastern Africa and Southern Africa.
Director of Development
Janice has worked in the nonprofit sector since 1999 in roles focusing on advocacy, communications, development and outreach. Prior to joining Global Kids, she served as the Chief Development and Communications Officer for GEMS, Girls Educational and Mentoring Services. She has also held positions at Planned Parenthood Mid-Hudson Valley and Scenic Hudson. In addition, Janice has worked as a college adjunct instructor of composition and rhetoric and as a fundraising database consultant. She earned both her BA and her MA in English Literature from the State University of New York at New Paltz.
Site Trainer - GK-DC
Washington, DC native and current Ward 8 resident, Tamika Love Jones, is a singer, songwriter, and community activist. Growing up in poverty, Tamika turned to music as an escape. At a young age Tamika began singing everywhere she went and has performed on stages, such as The Kennedy Center, Constitution Hall, and The Blue Note. Tamika is also very passionate about working with the youth. She began working in DC schools in 2009 as a substitute teacher and an instructional aide and continues to work with schools as well as several organizations as a resident and teaching artist, developing and facilitating interactive arts programming for youth of all ages.
Finance and Contracts Assistant
Diane is originally from the Bay Area and moved across the country to attend NYU. Diane earned her B.A. in education and public policy in 2015. She hopes to combine her most recent business operations experience at Oscar Insurance with her passion for high quality public education access for all students to learn and grow at Global Kids.
Director of Technology
Social Work/Senior Trainer
Olivia is a committed advocate for young people to tap into their capacity to find innate healing. She obtained her masters in clinical social work from Columbia University in 2016. After graduation, Olivia lived in California where she began to develop an expertise in resiliency/trauma informed practices with an emphasis on mindfulness and other holistic approaches. Most recently, Olivia completed her trauma informed yoga teacher training in Rishikesh, India and the Community/ Trauma Resiliency Model training through the Trauma Resource Institute.
Site Supervisor/Senior Trainer
Stephanie began working with Global Kids in 2014 as an intern through the CUNY Service Corps. During her final year of pursuing her BA in English at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, she learned how to facilitate and plan workshops. As a full time GK Trainer, she is excited to continue her work promoting youth leaders through GK's fun and interactive approach to education. Stephanie is also an artist and hopes to use her talents to promote creativity in the classroom to help students learn about global and local issues. Stephanie has traveled to Haiti twice and a recent visit to New Orleans to help rebuild homes damaged by Hurricane Katrina.
Site Supervisor/Senior Trainer
Born and raised in Brooklyn to Grenadian parents. A Global Kids alumnus who graduated the High School for Global Citizenship in 2008. As a GK participant, Samora traveled to seven different countries (Kenya, Eritrea, Egypt, Greece, Croatia, Turkey, Italy) on the Peace Boat Voyage 54 promoting peace around the world. Selected as a “People to People Sports Ambassador” a trip in which he was given the opportunity to go to Fiji, New Zealand, Australia and interact in cultural exchange by using sports as the main focus. He earned a B.S. in Entertainment Management at Bay State College. During his spare time he likes to play basketball, listen to music, and travel.
Young Sook Na
Young Sook has been involved in the nonprofit sector since 1996, primary focusing on advocacy & community organizing, civic participation and social services. Prior to joining Global Kids, she served as the Administrative Director for MinKwon Center for Community Action, Inc., Korean-American community based organization, overseeing administrative functions as well as facilities to ensure efficient and consistent operations. She started volunteering at the MinKwon Center as a high school student and then became an intern and participated in the DREAM Act campaign to grant amnesty for undocumented students, realizing the importance of community service activities while learning the harsh realities of the immigrant community. She holds B.B.A. in Accounting from Baruch College.
Communication and Community Engagement Coordinator
Todd is a Digital Marketer who has worked for non-profits since 2007. He previously managed and developed the social media channels for the New York Hall of Science (NYSCI), while growing their online community. Having trained high school and college students at NYSCI makes Todd a leader who can guide and mentor the youth. Plus, his years of public speaking and communication skills makes him an excellent ambassador for the community. He is a photography enthusiast, who enjoys helping others by having a strong positive mental attitude. Todd graduated from the Ziklin School of Business at Baruch College in 2016 with a B.B.A in Marketing and minor in Sociology.
Youth Development Specialist
Justine is a Bay Area native and received her B.A. in Sociology with a Community Change emphasis from San Jose State University. She also minored in Asian-American Studies. During her college years, she was involved in a number of endeavors, including running an after-school tutoring program for at-risk youth, creating and facilitating workshops throughout the South Bay for Filipino-American youth and young adults, and creating service opportunities for San Jose State student based organizations. She relocated to New York in 2009 for her Masters, and attained her M.A. in Educational Leadership, Politics, and Advocacy from New York University in May of 2011. While at NYU, she interned with Global Kids where she focused on college preparation and career readiness as well as service learning. Additionally, she co-facilitated an Intergroup Dialogue based on race with NYU undergraduates, worked in a early childhood literacy development program with NYU Jumpstart, and served as a Graduate Researcher at NYU's Hip-Hop Education Center, where she is still involved in the Women and Gender Studies Initiative. Justine is Filipina-American and speaks conversational Visayan.
Malika was born and raised in New Jersey. She completed her undergraduate degree from Mount Holyoke College in Architecture and International Relations. Thereafter, she worked in the nonprofit sector, in areas that she was passionate about, including education, the rights of women and girls, and activism. Prior to Global Kids, Malika pursued a degree in Scotland at the University of St. Andrews in Peace and Conflict Studies. When not working, she enjoys trying new cuisines, watching documentaries, traveling and exploring different cultures.
Community School Site Director
Damelvy was born and raised in New York City. A Global Kids Alumni, she received her BA at Adelphi University, where she studied management with a specialization in marketing. She interned and worked as Assistant Account Executive at Geoffrey Weill Associates, a luxury travel public relations firm. She hopes to pursue a masters in corporate communications. She is fluent in Spanish.
Prior to moving to the United States at the age of 15, Shantanu grew up traveling in numerous Asian and Latin American countries, which gave him the opportunity to become fluent in English, Spanish, Hindi, Bengali and Urdu. Shantanu received his B.A. in International Relations with a Magna Cum Laude Honor at City College of New York. As an undergraduate student, he has been a Dobrich New Americans Scholar at the Colin L. Powell Center for Leadership and Service. His interest in foreign policy inspired him to write a policy to reduce child labor in Colombia through the promotion of youth advocacy. Post-graduation, he has continued his journey by becoming a Trainer at Global Kids. In addition to policy-writing, Shantanu is passionate about reading books, playing guitar,
golf and tennis.
A New York native born to Caribbean parents, Christie holds a Master's degree in International Affairs from the Milano School of International Affairs, Management and Urban Policy. Her activism today is influenced by her time in South Africa, where she worked as a research assistant. Her research focused on gender, intersectional discrimination, awareness of privilege, and injustice towards marginalized populations. New to youth development but not at all new to international affairs, she hopes her work at Global Kids will enable her to combine her global social justice experience with youth leadership work in order to improve the lives of others.
A Broolkyn native, Franchesca attended Skidmore college where she received a B.A in Psychology and was involved in clubs that promoted diversity and awareness. At Skidmore, she discovered her love for traveling and exploring other cultures by studying abroad in Australia and doing a travel seminar in Italy. This travel inspired her to move to Madrid for a year to teach English after she graduated. Along with traveling and exploring cultures, Franchesca has a passion for youth development. She spent many summers working for Project Morry, an organization that provides positive child development through their free summer camp for youth from urban centers.
Emily was born and raised in Chalfont, Pennsylvania. She attended Old Dominion University, where she received a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies, with a minor in Religious Studies. Emily continued her studies at the University of Pittsburgh. There, she received a Master’s of Social Work, with a concentration in Community Organization and Social Administration. She also received a Master’s of International Development, with a concentration in Human Security. While in graduate school, she studied community development extensively, both internationally and domestically, as well as policy analysis, international law, human security, and non-profit management. Emily used evidence-based practices to work with families, schools, and communities, in order to change the statistics associated with kindergarten attendance and enrollment in Pittsburgh Public Schools. Emily also worked as the Middle School Assistant Coordinator at The Pittsburgh Project, a community development non-profit, where she was an after-school teacher, and managed the summer day camp program. She has traveled to Italy, Mexico, and Jamaica, and has studied abroad in Peru and Colombia. Emily loves all things music, the beach, card games, peanut butter sandwiches, coloring, Netflix, and, recently, podcasts.
Born in India and raised in Staten Island, Heena strongly believes in youth-centered and social justice based education, especially for students hailing from marginalized communities. She holds a B.A. in psychology from Barnard College, where she began leading peer educator workshops on women’s physical, emotional, and mental health issues. Heena has worked along the intersections of education and psychology for many years, including working with students with disabilities, fostering mentorship relationships with youth, as well as providing crisis counseling for LGBTQ teens. As a writer who also comes from a community organizing background, Heena believes in the power of using the creative arts to engender social change and is excited to foster these skills with GK youth.
Sharon is a Brooklyn native with a passion for art. She graduated with her Bachelor’s degree in Studio Art from The City College of New York. With her background as a freelance illustrator, she teaches illustration to elementary school students, encouraging creative self-expression. She believes that visual language is very important and is excited to be a member of Global Kids.
Leigh Taylor is a born and raised New Yorker, hailing from Morningside Heights in Manhattan. She recently graduated from Bard College with a B.A. in Sociology. Leigh’s interest in youth education began when she was a teaching assistant at a charter school in New Orleans, LA and continued as a Dean at Sadie Nash Leadership Project. As a self-identified black feminist, Leigh advocates for young women of color and empowers them to use their identities as a form of knowledge. During her college career, Leigh was involved in activist projects for domestic workers and formerly incarcerated people. While her focus is in labor, gender, race, and relationality, Leigh has also worked for organizations invested in resolving the issue of mass-incarceration, such as the Bard Prison Initiative and VOTE (Voices of the Experienced) in New Orleans, LA.
The son of Liberian-born parents who sought refuge in the US from the Liberian Civil War, Frank understood at a young age the importance of global awareness. For this reason, he was naturally drawn to Global Kids as a freshman at the High School for Global Citizenship in Brooklyn. Through Global Kids, Frank took part in numerous programs, including having the incredible opportunity to travel on the Peace Boat. While on the trip, he met with Costa Rica's presidential runner-up, Ottón Solis, co-facilitating a workshop with him on government corruption. Frank's love for analyzing and writing on topics of interest lead him to the University of Bridgeport, where he obtained his B.A in Journalism. Watching basketball, researching fashion trends, exercising and listening to music are all things he likes to do in his spare time. He hopes to combine his love of those four things into a digital magazine.
Randy is a New Jersey native who received a B.A in Information Systems from Ramapo College of New Jersey. During his years in college he was deeply involved with the campus community working as a resident assistant and orientation leader for incoming students. He also served as secretary for Brothers Making a Difference, treasurer for Organization of African Unity and member of the Organization of Latin Unity. After college, he worked with an array of students at Kumon North America where he served as a corporate trainer. In 2010, he coordinated programming with NFL players through the Care Africa Program.
Sara Van Eerde
Sara Van Eerde holds a Masters degree from the NYU Silver School of Social Work. During her undergraduate career at Muhlenberg College, Sara pursued a Psychology major and a self- designed Gender and Sexuality studies major. This focus quickly took a global perspective when she researched "machismo" while in Costa Rica, youth activism and empowerment while in Germany, and art therapy interventions at an orphanage while living in Buenos Aires, Argentina. These experiences strengthened her drive to advocate for an intersectional lens on social justice issues.
In her spare time, Sara loves adventurous activities such as flying through the air on aerial silks, rock climbing, hiking, and performing musical improv. Sara is deeply inspired by the work that the organization does and is beyond grateful to join the Global Kids community.
Digital Learning and Leadership Trainer
Matthew is passionate about the intersection of peace and human rights education and technology. He focused on human rights during his undergraduate studies at Ohio University and later in New York University's MS in Global Affairs program. Matthew enjoys learning about global cultures and politics as they relate to government and human rights, having conducted field research on these topics in Bolivia, Vietnam, and the Palestinian Territories. Matthew also enjoys working with children, and spent two years helping create and teach peace and human rights curriculum in Brooklyn and Pakistan with the New York nonprofit Peace Project, Inc. At Global Kids, he is thrilled to continue teaching children the importance of global issues while simultaneously incorporating STEM and game design curriculum.
Born in Germany to Ghanaian parents, Manuela was raised in Newark, New Jersey. She received her B.S. in Environmental Science and Biology from Saint Michael's College in Colchester, Vermont. She helped to diversify the college's student body through her positions as President of the Martin Luther King Jr. Society, Secretary of Diversity and Inclusion, President of the Diversity Coalition club, and Resident Assistant. Manuela is passionate about freedom and justice for all black and brown people, women's rights, the African Diaspora, and youth leadership and mentorship. In her spare time, Manuela loves to travel, paint, write, and dance.
Ariel was born and bred in New York City. She is a Global Kids alumnus through the High School for Global Citizenship. She graduated Stony Brook University with a B.A. in Political Science and Gender Studies with concentrations in the U.S Constitution and Global Feminism. While in school, she interned for a charter school in Brooklyn. Her hobbies include photography, classical mythology, and collecting more books than she can read. She hopes to pursue certification in American Sign Language.