I first came to Senegal to work for an NGO (non-government organization). My mission at the time was to teach technicians how to use solar panels to power the pumps for small farms in the countryside. After my work with this NGO, I stayed in Senegal for a month, and I met some great Senegalese people. Together, we decided to dedicate ourselves toward working to bring water to more small villages and to find ways to help others.
Since then, others have joined our organization to help connect all our villages together. We have a lot of great people working together, and we look forward to involving all of you who are interested in making these connections, and creating a better life for all.
--Tom Briggs, KOVA Founder
Tom Briggs (USA) came to Africa with a dream to help bring people together to achieve great things. He has been a teacher for a long time, and loves to share everything he has learned with others. Providing access to water for drinking and farming has been his primary mission for the last two years, and gives plenty of energy and experience to villages and schools.
Mariana Kind (USA) is one of the most determined and dedicated people we know. She is unstoppable, and always finds an answer to any problem that we encounter. She has incredible interpersonal skills, and provides inspiration to us all.
Alioune Ndoye (Senegal) is an incredibly creative and talented web developer who has generously helped us to create our website, so that we can share our organization's activities with everyone who is interested. Alioune is Baba's brother, and he graciously donated a lot of time and energy to assist us in our endeavors.
Olivia Rouzière-Beaulieu is a French public law jurist that has always been concerned with the environment. In France, she volunteered with some sustainable development associations and began to work on several farming projects. Now, she has brought her expertise to Senegal, and we are so grateful to have her help guiding us toward better methods of farming.
Babacar "Baba" Laye Ndoye (Senegal) was one of the founders of KOVA. The synergy between Tom and Baba has determined the direction of the KOVA projects. When Baba encounters a problem, he attacks it as a challenge, and finds resolution and progress toward all our goals. Although he has recently opened a tourism business in Dakar, Senegal specializing in surfing and yoga, he continues to assist with many of our projects.
Cheryl Hewitt (USA) is a great organizer and extremely practical person. She is wonderful at keeping us on track and helping us to set realistic goals. Cheryl is an award winning nurse and teacher, and in the future will help us to provide medical assistance within the villages.
Cheikh Ahmed Tidiane Diagne (Senegal) is our saviour when it comes to communicating with others. He is fluent in Wolof, French, English, and Spanish. We really appreciate his efforts in helping us to achieve understanding amongst all of our project participants. He also helps us in material procurement. He is an amazing negotiator and always gets us the best possible price.
Ndiame Senn (Senegal) helps with all the KOVA projects a volunteer. He has provided translation and assistance to help set our direction. As a full time employee of another development NGO, he brings a lot of knowledge and experience about water/agriculture and school projects.
Daryl L. Hunter (USA) is a Landscape, Wildlife, Travel Photographer, Guide, Writer and Polyhistor, and a great friend. He uses his dedication and talents to help us move in new and creative directions, and never seems to run out of energy.
Project Coordinator/ Translator
Abdoul Aziz Gueye (Senegal) was essential in achieving a positive result in our first garden project in Guediawaye, Dakar, Senegal. His daily participation involved the planning, installation, and consultation with local volunteers. He was so helpful, that we are certain we would not have been successful without his assistance. Although he is a full-time student, he continues to help us with all of KOVA's projects.
Kaia Philips (Ireland) is a professional surf instructor and still finds time to be passionate about her involvement with KOVA. She was indispensible with the formation of our organization, and continues to help in our daily activities.