Meet the Team
Chris Kubwimana (Founder, Trustee and Managing Director) was born in Burundi, Africa. He has worked with international organisations such as the International Rescue Committee in Kenya, advising on deaf people who are refugees focussing on immigration issues and appropriate services for this specific social group. He contributed to the development of a new Sign Language Research Project for Sudanese Deaf refugees, which has now been incorporated into South Sudanese Sign Language.
Profoundly Deaf himself, Chris founded ADAA in 2007, inspired and motivated by first-hand experiences. The combination of the inadequacy of the education in his own childhood, his experiences in working with Deaf refuges in the East Africa Community (ECA) and visiting his homeland, Burundi, a year earlier, finding that little had improved for deaf children and young adults, all culminated in the establishment of ADAA.
He is passionate about basic human rights and freedom of choice. He believes in, and advocates for, education for all. Whether Deaf or, hearing, disabled or non-disabled, male or female, he believes that education is an investment in the future and contributes not only to social development, but also the formation of human capital.
He currently works as a qualified Social Worker and his interest in International Development work led him to complete a MSC/MA in International Development Studies.
Sanchayeeta (Trustee/Chairperson) is passionate about campaign for global justice, and social equality and poverty alleviation. She has done a number of environmental, community and campaign voluntary work for a number of charity such as Raleigh International, VSO and CSV. She holds a degree and master’s in international development, specially in children and youth in global contexts. She is committed that ADAA is working with deaf NGOs and institutions to ensure deaf people in Africa, quality of life, and betterment of it and see that they are empowered to lead their communities.
Irina Drytchak (Trustee/Secretary) is a CODA (Child of a Deaf Adult), she studied BA Acting at The Arts Institute at Bournemouth College. However, she wanted to explore working with the deaf community. she has worked as a Communication Support Worker in colleges, varies work settings, theatre and film events. She was also a Youth Worker for young deaf teenagers, an Employment Adviser and an IAG officer (Information, Guidance and Advice). Her main passion is combining signing and creativity into my work such as creating workshops, events and teaching sign language through games and fun learning. She has a passion in travelling and She has had the opportunity in working abroad in planning and leading drama sessions for adults with special needs and She has also worked as an Interpreter with deaf tour groups. She has recently set up a business called Sign For All LTD which supports Deaf and Hearing fathers, CODA’s and families who need to learn British Sign Language to improve communication and to remove barriers.
Sharon (Trustee/Treasurer) has nearly 25 years’ experience of working with people who may face disadvantage or barriers to equality of opportunity which includes specialist roles with Deaf people and a current position at Sense supporting Deafblind people and those with sensory or complex communication needs. Aurora Deaf Aid Africa’s aims and values strongly resonant with Sharon as Sense are also striving for people with sensory needs to have equality of access and to be as independent as possible, achieving their goals and aspirations to their fullest potential. Sharon is passionate about equalities and human rights and keen to gain experience in international development whilst utilising her BSL skills and knowledge of the Deaf community.