In-country management

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Nii Doodo Dodoo 

Ghana Country Director

Nii manages the Ghana team across the offices in Tamale and Bolgatanga.


Nii joined Lively Minds in 2021, bringing two decades of leadership experience from across West Africa. Most recently, he was a manager at Solidaridad West Africa where he led the training strategy and systems for the region in addition to management responsibilities.

Nii has managed diverse country projects and teams for international organisations such as VSO, Restless Development, and Youth Challenge International. As well as consultancy experience with KPMG, he brings extensive experience of working in the education sector and working with rural and marginalised communities.

Nii holds an MBA from GIMPA Business School (Ghana) and an MSc in Development Management from the Open University (UK).

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James Awini

Ghana Deputy Country Director

James is the former Regional Manager for the Upper East and now manages the Ghana team along with Nii.


Prior to joining Lively Minds in 2014, James worked for 12 years as a teacher in Ghana’s primary and secondary schools. He also worked with Grassroots Africa as a Capacity Building Officer, providing training and creating platforms for communities to engage with their local governments.

He was instrumental in our growth in the Upper East region, working with Ghana Education Service to expand the programme from 7 communities in 2 districts to 114 communities in 3 districts.


James manages multi-sector stakeholder relations, whilst mentoring his team and education officials to grow and meet their targets. He brings his analytical skills to the organisation to ensure that programme data is used to identify, celebrate or solve challenges and successes.

He holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Cape Coast and a master's in Political Science from Osnabruck University, Germany.


David Abukari

Ghana Learning & Quality Manager

As one of Lively Minds' founding members, David brings 10 years’ institutional knowledge and experience.


David has 24 years’ experience working in both formal and informal sectors. A professionally trained teacher with six years teaching experience in primary and junior high school levels, he has spent the last fourteen years with NGOs both in the field and in management. 

He was Ghana Country Manager and is now Learning & Quality Manager, focusing on applying his people management skills and in depth knowledge to ensure excellence is maintained at scale.


David holds a diploma in building construction, a BSC in human settlement planning and a master's in NGO management and rural development.


Yakubu Idrissu

Ghana Training Manager

Yakubu joined Lively Minds in 2014, having discovered the organisation when working next door to us as the Director of Community Partnership for Youth and Women Development.


He got to know the team and realised that the Lively Minds strategy, philosophy vision and mission was in line with the work he wanted to be doing.


We are lucky that he moved over the wall, bringing his 13 years' experience as an educationist and with childhood development programmes within the Northern sector of Ghana.


His interest and passion in life has been to see young children get the right quality foundation that will serves as springboard for their growth and development and has always wanted to work in this area.

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John Kamwaka Twesigye

Uganda Country Director

John joined the Lively Minds team in Uganda in April 2021.


John was previously a Technical Programme Manager for Education at World Vision Uganda: leading, managing and maintaining delivery of the Field Office’s strategy and overall education programming portfolio.

John’s previous experience has seen him engage with numerous national level stakeholders in Uganda. He brings rich experience of managing international relief and development programmes, and strengthening education systems, as well as extensive knowledge of working with rural communities.

John is excited that Lively Minds’ Early Childhood Development goals align with his beliefs. John is focused on leading the Uganda country team towards the organisation’s vision to ensure the programme’s scalability.


Jill Patience Nabirye

Uganda Senior Training Officer

Jill has been with Lively Minds Uganda since 2017, bringing her experience in communication and training skills to the role of Senior Training Officer. 


Any given day can see her writing training templates, coming up with creative lessons that can help solve problems in the communities, and managing and coaching local government teams and the Lively Minds training team.


Initially working with us as a data collector, Jill started as a Community Development Officer and her attention to detail and observational skills have seen her rise quickly through the team.


She remains excited about working with Lively Minds, which she says resonates with both her studies in Child Development and Children’s Ministry, and her passion for seeing children grow and develop a strong foundation for their futures.

Prior to Lively Minds, Jill worked on Rhites, an EC USAID project. When not at work she loves to make new friends, enjoys music and dancing, and is committed to counselling.