AkiDwA Board Members
Ashimedua Okwonko (also known as Meddy) is the chairperson of AkiDwA. She is an international advocate, adviser, trainer and researcher on Human Rights and Civil Society issues pertaining to refugees, Gender Based Violence, and harmful traditional practices. Ashimedua is a member of the American Bar Association, the New York State Bar Association and the Law Society of Ireland.
Meddy serves on the board of the National Women’s Council of Ireland and she is also on the board of Louth and Meath Education and Training Board. She is highly experienced on the Immigration laws of Ireland, the United Kingdom and the United States. She is also knowledgeable in areas such as family law, employment law and landlord and tenant law. She has worked on a pro bono basis for clients on Immigration Appeals Tribunals, Employment Tribunals and Labour Courts in Ireland. In 2012 Ashimedua established her own law firm in Dublin She has an LLB (Hons) degree in Law from London Guildhall University and a Postgraduate Diploma in Legal Practice (LPC) from the same University. She has a Master’s degree in Law (LLM) from Trinity College Dublin and a Postgraduate Certificate in Teaching and Assessment from Dublin Institute of Technology. Ashimedua has recently completed her doctorate research at Trinity College, Dublin. H er research was on The Inequality in Law.
Jules Buckley was born in Zimbabwe and she has been living in Ireland since 2000. In 2009 Jules helped with the development of Brain Gain Ireland, a network for migrant entrepreneurs and professionals which has now been running for 10 years. Jules represents AkiDwA at forums in Europe. She has experience in office management, public relations and human resources management and is currently working as a Marketing Executive. Jules has a keen interest in volunteering for NGOs who work with disadvantaged groups, particularly with migrants on issues like discrimination, racism, domestic violence and FGM. She has volunteered with SARI (Sports Against Racism Ireland). Jules is a qualified and practicing hypnotherapist and life coach with a focus on Pranic Psychotherapy and personal training. She previously worked with Pobal as an administrator.
Paola Maggiorotto is a Technical Support Manager at Microsoft. She is Italian and has been living in Ireland for over 8 years. Paola has corporate experience in people management, project and program management, stakeholder engagement, marketing and communications. She is focused on guaranteeing a gender and culturally balanced recruiting pipeline/workforce and she advocates for more inclusion of women in technology. Paola is involved with Microsoft’s Diversity and Inclusion programs globally.
Paola has a Master’s Degree in International Communication and a Bachelor’s Degree in Foreign Languages for International, Institutional and Business Relations. She has a Diploma in Managing Charities in the Voluntary and Community Sector, a Diploma in Latin American Development Studies and a Diploma in Understanding and Addressing Gender Based Violence in Development Contexts
Aradhana (Kuxi) Ghai is a producer, journalist,media consultant and Human Rights Activist from Nairobi, Kenya. Kuxi has worked on award winning films, documentaries and events all around Africa. Kuxi is the former Head of Media for the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights (KNCHR). Prior to joining the KNCHR, Kuxi worked as a media consultant developing media strategies for some of Kenya’s biggest companies and NGOs. As a producer, Kuxi helped to organise international sports and music events in Kenya, including the ICC Cricket World Cup.
Kuxi produced podcasts hosted by former Newstalk presenter, Dil Wrickremasinghe called ‘Sparking Change with Dil”, which focused on social justice and mental health issues. Kuxi volunteers with charities in Dublin that working with homeless people, lone parents, asylum seekers, refugees and migrants. Kuxi’s values have strong roots in the ethics of social justice and equality for all. She is inherently driven by the principles outlined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. She works to uplift humanity to a space where we all have an equal seat at the table.