Welcome to Kangu!
We built Kangu because we wanted to create an easy, concrete and personal way to fund healthcare services for pregnant moms around the world.
After safely giving birth to two healthy babies, I could not shake what I knew: that so many women around the world lack access to clean facilities and trained professionals during pregnancy and childbirth, and 800 die each day as a result. I learned that most maternal and newborn deaths are preventable and that there are hospitals and clinics offering life-saving care around the world. I wanted to help and I knew others would too.
Our team built Kangu because we wanted to create an easy, personal and accountable way to expand healthcare services to pregnant women around the world. I hope you'll love using Kangu as much as we have loved creating it. I welcome your feedback and suggestions, so please reach out anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Casey and the Kangu team
Casey SantiagoFounder & Executive Director
Casey Santiago founded Kangu after working at the pioneering microfinance crowdfunding website, Kiva, and having wonderful children of her own. She also serves as the Program Director of Technology and Innovation at the Results for Development Institute. Casey began her career at Deloitte and has advised non-profits, corporations and donor agencies including Doctors without Borders, Institute for OneWorld Health, Bristol Myers-Squibb, and USAID. Casey has worked in Bangladesh, the Dominican Republic, Ghana, Kenya, Mali, Morocco, South Africa, Senegal, Tanzania, Togo and Zambia. She holds a BA magna cum laude from Wellesley College, an MBA from Columbia Business School and an MA from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs.
Marion SifreuOperations and Partnership Director
Marion Sifreu serves as the Operations Leader at Kangu, after having been part of the first Fellow Program in 2014 to work on a pilot expansion of Kangu into Latin America. She has a Master degree in Business and Management and received an important training in health care economics and policy, acquired during 8 years of working as consultant in private healthcare companies. She has been in charge of several consulting assignments in strategy, organization and operational performance to all stakeholders in the health sector (hospitals, clinics, as well as public institutions).
Maya HardiganBoard Director
Maya Hardigan is currently the Director of Clinical Innovation at Pfizer, Inc., and serves on the Board of Directors at Kangu.org. Prior to Pfizer, Maya was a healthcare management consultant with Booz & Company. Maya’s work has primarily focused on identifying growth strategies and operational improvements for healthcare-oriented companies and managing the associated implementations. Maya received her bachelor’s degree at Duke University in Biology and Psychology, and her MBA from Columbia Business School.
Nikki Chase-LevinBoard Director
One morning over coffee, Nikki told Casey... "since I live in a house full of men I insist that all our pets are girls." Nikki lives in New York City with her husband, Dave, her two sons - enthusiastic, joyful little dudes named Max and Zach, and their 75-pound, female yellow lab - Bubbles. Prior to life in the Big Apple, Nikki received her BA in Journalism from Michigan State University. Over the course of her seventeen year career, Nikki has worked for several consumer brands including Captain Morgan Original Spiced Rum, Sony, Morgan Stanley, Discover Card and Miller Brewing Company. Her responsibilities across these roles spanned television advertising development, marketing communications, public relations, crisis communication, and events programming.
Sarah Samarasinghe has more than 10 years in nonprofit management, development, and executive search. Her experience includes senior leadership positions at City Year New York and Beginning with Children Foundation. A seasoned fundraiser, Sarah has raised tens of millions of dollars for NYC nonprofits over the course of her career. Currently, Sarah is a candidate developer for pbr Executive Search. Sarah earned a BA from the University of Colorado and an MBA with a concentration in nonprofit management from George Washington University. She lives in Manhattan with her husband and two sons.
Tricia Bolender is part of the founding team and serves as an Advisor Kangu. As Faculty at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, Tricia partners with governments in low- and middle-income countries around health financing and systems improvement. Additionally, Tricia Bolender advises Fortune 500 companies, governments, multilaterals, major foundations, nonprofits, and impact investors around strategy and impact as a global health consultant. She received her BA from Harvard University, MBA and MA in International Affairs from Columbia University, and has worked in India, the Philippines, Australia, Thailand, Rwanda, Ghana, Nigeria, and Ethiopia.
Mazeda Hossain is an epidemiologist at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) with experience in public health research, development and humanitarian aid work in Africa, Europe and Asia. She has a background in epidemiology and reproductive and sexual health research. Mazeda has extensive experience leading research projects among vulnerable populations (asylum seekers, trafficked women, conflict-affected) and technical expertise in designing, conducting and analyzing mixed-method impact evaluations of complex interventions. Prior to joining the LSHTM, she worked in development and humanitarian aid programs in West Africa and supported a US-based program working with women peacebuilders from conflict-affected settings.
Dr. Veronica AdesAdvisor
Veronica Ades is a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the NYU School of Medicine. She has served as an obstetrician-gynecologist on several Doctors Without Borders (MSF) missions, including in Irbid, Jordan, and in South Sudan. Veronica has also previously worked for one year at a rural district hospital in Uganda while doing research on malaria in pregnancy. She is originally from New York City, graduated from Wellesley College and received her medical degree from the State University of New York at Downstate in Brooklyn, New York. She did her residency training in obstetrics and gynecology at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx, New York.