who we are

STAFF

coordinator

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ALEXIS SIMPSON

GHANA

 

BA   Development Studies, University of East Anglia

MSc Business Information Technology, Middlesex University

PGCE   Further Education University of Greenwich

CELTA Teaching of English as a Foreign Language

Alexis (Miss Alexis), who was raised in Ghana by her English father and Ghanaian mother and later attended a convent school in Britain,  joined the staff of OYA in 2017, coming to us with a wealth of experience in community education and an excellent track record in fundraising. She was not new to OYA, however: her two daughters had attended the Saturday School and been active members of the Culture Group, and she had served as Chair of the Management Committee for several years.

Miss Alexis is front of house in OYA and on Saturdays, as she manages the teachers, supervises the Trainees and deals with a thousand and one contingencies, her welcoming smile and gentle voice make everybody’s day brighter.

finance/admin officer

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MENTEWAB E. GIORGIS

ETHIOPIA

BA Accountancy and Finance, University of North London

 

‘Auntie Mente’ already had considerable experience in voluntary sector accounting when she joined OYA in 2002. She has handled our accounts with the utmost integrity and accuracy for 18 years, preparing our books for independent examination and keeping track of every penny, from large sums spread across several years to tiny – but very welcome – one-off donations. She loses sleep searching for funding opportunities to keep OYA going and keep the fees we charge affordable. She has an obsession with fairness and cannot be bought. If Auntie Mente were in charge of the money in the UK or in Africa, both places would be the better for it!

 

Her tough accountant’s mask covers the warmest heart: Auntie Mente cares, she looks after people – her colleagues, the kids, the parents. OYA has owed its survival to her on many occasions through the years.

"I am from Ethiopia and have a degree in Accounting & Finance as well as considerable experience in the Voluntary Sector.

I joined OYA! (Organisation of Young Africans) in 2002 and since then have been responsible for managing the Organisation’s Account – i.e. payment of staff (PAYE), Management Account for the Trustees, preparing OYA’s account for the independent examiners and financial reports to the funders. I also do a range of admin work related to the Finance such as filing of Annual Returns to the Charity Commission."