A group of Goalkeepers community members

Community  Spotlights  Stories of Leaders

Goalkeepers’ Voices

Every Goalkeeper has a story—a story about their journey, their big idea, or the moment they connected the dots. These six Community Spotlights, created from conversations with Goalkeepers in 2021, feature a sampling of our diverse community members who lead with profound vision to advance progress toward the 17 Global Goals.

Community Members

Marcella Hansch: Architect, Educator, Climate-Action Activist

Founder, everwave

Marcella is the founder of everwave, an organization dedicated to ridding oceans and rivers of plastic waste through technology, education, and ecological inspiration. She is an architect turned climate action activist, as well as an educator, entrepreneur, and mother. Her graduate school thesis on cleaning trash from the oceans, which garnered international attention and awards, became the foundation of her organization and its mission.
Find out more about Marcella Hansch

Charlotte Aubin: Entrepreneur, Environmentalist, Mentor

Founder and President, GreenWish

Charlotte is the founder and president of GreenWish, a trailblazer in renewable energy infrastructure development across multiple geographies. GreenWish commissioned the first solar Independent Power Producer project in West Africa and the first solar hybrid portfolio for the telecom sector in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Charlotte also developed GreenWish Villages, a B2B platform accelerating access to electricity, digital and water services in remote areas with impact on 12 of the Global Goals.
Find out more about Charlotte Aubin

Gregory Rockson: Global Health Advocate, Problem-Solver, Innovator

Co-founder and CEO, mPharma

It’s easy to put Silicon Valley on a pedestal. It’s home to some of the largest tech companies in the world and the most coveted roles in digital innovation. But Gregory Rockson had his sights set elsewhere: home. Though he originally planned to pursue a job at Google after earning his college degree, he changed his mind when he learned about the thousands of preventable deaths attributed to lack of available medications in hospital and outpatient settings in Ghana. So he returned home and started a different career at warp speed. Gregory is co-founder and CEO of mPharma, a digital platform spanning eight countries that solves the problem of patients lacking quick access to safe, affordable medications. It addresses the twin obstacles of supply chain inefficiencies and high prices by connecting patients with providers who can diagnose their illness and connecting providers with well-stocked pharmacies that charge affordable prices.
Find out more about Gregory Rockson

Gary White: Engineer, Listener, Catalyst

CEO and co-founder, Water.org

Close your eyes and imagine a world without a 24/7 news cycle or social media. Now imagine you want to change the lives of billions of people, by helping them access clean water and sanitation. Where would you even start? In the 1990s, with the internet in its infancy and live news not yet something we could carry in our pockets, Gary White found a way. He began drumming up excitement and funding through simple face-to-face networking. Seems like a daunting task for anyone, but for Gary it was a calling.
Find out more about Gary White

Shameran Abed: Changemaker, Optimist, Resilient

Executive Director, BRAC International

Poverty doesn’t happen overnight. One day you lose your job, and then a few months later you lose your home. With no income in sight, your ability to provide food and health care for your family vanishes over time. For years, Goalkeeper Shameran Abed has worked to end poverty, knowing that this is the reality for millions of people.
Find out more about Shameran Abed

Umra Omar: Humanitarian, Community Conservation Strategist, Listener

Founder, Safari Doctors

Umra is the founder of Safari Doctors, an organization that delivers primary health care and health education by boat, air, and land to the doorsteps of thousands of people every month. After her studies in neuroscience and social justice, working in New York City seemed removed from reality. While visiting her homeland of Lamu County, she learned about a mobile medical project that was abandoned due to insecurity. This became the inspiration for Safari Doctors and fueled a new personal mission centered by motherhood, career, and finding purpose. Within a year of her return, she was honored with a 2016 CNN Heroes award.
Find out more about Umra Omar

Patricia Kihoro: Entertainer, Philosopher, Storyteller

Artist and Content Creator

Patricia is a Kenyan- based storyteller, singer, actress, radio presenter, event host, and improv comedian. She uses her art forms to share about her life, and all the people and things she encounters as she journeys through it. She celebrates African innovators, art, and culture with a strong bias towards music. Through her various platforms, Patricia reminds us that we cannot create social change without first changing mindsets. Her insight on the Global Goals encourages audiences to believe in their ability to not only seize opportunities but to create them for themselves, using their skills or talents, regardless of gender.
Find out more about Patricia Kihoro

Aya Chebbi: Activist, Pan-African Feminist, Speaker

Founder and Chair, Nala Feminist Collective

Aya is a Pan-African feminist and diplomat. She rose to prominence as a political activist-blogger during the Tunisian Revolution. She served as the first- ever African Union Special Envoy on Youth and the youngest diplomat at the African Union Commission Chairperson’s Cabinet (2018—-2021). Currently, she is the fFounder and cChair of Nala Feminist Collective—a Pan-African front of feminist leaders with a mission to foster, embolden, and mobilize women and girls from Africa and the Diaspora.
Find out more about Aya Chebbi

Rahim Abas Kiobya: Climate Action Hero, Educator

Founder and Project Manager, Geospatial Tanzania

Goalkeeper and 2018 Youth Action Accelerator participant Rahim Abas Kiobya understands the urgency of climate action for the entire plant and wants to do something about it. Rahim is the co-founder and executive officer of Geospatial Tanzania and its initiative Data for Local Impact. In Tanzania, climate change is taking its toll. Rahim co-founded Geospatial Tanzania in 2017 to gather data from health organizations and dig into the relationship between household air pollution and disease to promote better alternatives for the environment. To Rahim, climate action is not an option, it’s our new way of life. Here are three things Rahim wants everyone to know leading up to COP26. Take notes, because they affect each and every one of us.
Find out more about Rahim Abas Kiobya

Lady Mariéme Jamme: Activist, Visionary, Tech Evangelist

Founder, iamtheCODE

In many parts of the world, tech education for girls and women is either nonexistent or grinds to a halt before high school. But in the past decade, we’ve seen people like Lady Mariéme Jamme tackle the educational inequities that leave girls and women behind. For her, coding is much more than stringing together 0s and 1s—it’s a path to new possibilities for women and to becoming breadwinners. Below are four of Lady Mariéme’s core principles for changing the future of technology education for the next generation of marginalized girls and women.
Find out more about Lady Marieme Jamme

Racha Haffar: Activist, Entrepreneur, Visionary

Founder, Youth Against Slavery Movement

Racha Haffar was 18 years old when she almost fell into a human trafficking trap. She needed income to afford postsecondary education in the UK and responded to an ad for babysitting jobs. She later realized this ad was false. In this sense, Racha is one of the lucky ones—she soon became aware of how many other girls in need of income and lacking economic empowerment had fallen for these ads and become modern-day slaves. Racha’s narrow escape stoked a fire in her to speak out about this alarmingly common, yet seldom acknowledged, evil.
Find out more about Racha Haffar