We rely on the dedication of community volunteers in the places where we serve.
“Volunteers do not necessarily have the time; they have the heart.” – Elizabeth Andrew
President / CEO
Chibuzo Kanulia Okigbo states that her Christian faith, reverence, and submission to Abba are the foundation on which the very essence of her existence is built.
She has over 20 years of experience in both the public and private sector with a proven track record of excellence. She has experience working with people with developmental and mental health disabilities, youth, children, survivors of violence, Indigenous peoples, persons of diverse races, ancestry, color, religion and/or spiritual beliefs, or places of origin. Chibuzo has developed a wide breadth of knowledge acquiring subject matter expertise in child protection, early child and youth development, education, gender equality, aging, human rights, equity, diversity & inclusion, personal empowerment, structural social work, community change, social justice, domestic violence, immigration, and transnational, intergenerational, remote caregiving. With a strong interest in people and a desire to support people tap into their latent potentials, Chibuzo believes people can live full, meaningful, and impactful lives.
Chibuzo obtained an honors bachelor’s degree in English from the premier university in Nigeria, the University of Nigeria. Her second bachelor’s degree, a joint major in Women and First Nations Studies and a master’s degree in Social Work (MSW) are from the University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC). Chibuzo’s education has provided her with broad analytical frameworks, a well-developed focus, general and theoretical knowledge, as well as intellectual and analytical knowledge required to analyze sociocultural, economic, and political issues. Her MSW thesis research examined the intersection of immigration and violence against women in relationships: a case study of the lived experiences of West African immigrant women in Northern British Columbia. Chibuzo is currently working on her PhD in Health Sciences (UNBC) and her research interest focuses on aging and the intersections of immigration and transnational, intergenerational and remote caregiving. Chibuzo’s intellectual-ethical culture is complemented by her pleasant personality and penchant for dialectical dialogue.
Chibuzo’s work experience includes working with the province of British Columbia Canada, the Elizabeth Fry Society, Aimhi, Prince George Native Friendship Centre. Chibuzo volunteers for the Northern Women’s Centre at the University of Northern, BC, her local church, and different events in her community. Earlier in her career she also worked for the UN Development Programme and for Nigerian banks like ACB and First Bank Mortgages. She is a member of Golden Key International Honor Society University of Northern British Columbia Chapter. Chibuzo strives for excellence in all her endeavors. The one common aspect of all Chiuzo’s work is her natural interest and enjoyment working with people and the desire to make their lives better. Empowering others to succeed is not just a job for her; it is her passion and commitment.
Director Planning/Special Events
Jacintha Maseli is a co-founder of Azarel children’s home in Abuja. She has been a Christian since 1987 and a member of the full gospel business men’s fellowship international. She is an ardent lover of God and has a deep passion for children. Jacintha is a chartered accountant and currently works as a senior officer accountant at the ECOWAS Commission. Earlier in her career, she worked for one of the big 4 accounting firms namely KPMG. She has also worked for the Catholic Relief Services a non-profit organization and for LEAP, a USAID-funded project.
Jacintha has always been of service to her community and has championed and executed several projects in Nigeria. She currently seats on different committees of projects that have positively impacted the lives of several communities. She and her husband Dave founded Azarel children’s home. The vision of Azarel’s is to cater to orphaned, displaced, abused, or under-privileged children. Azarel s’ primary mission is to ensure that children in these categories are given an opportunity for good parental care and love.
Chuks Sam Nwachukwu is the coordinator of the children’s department of Peacehouse Missions at Nsukka Field of Enugu State. He also serves in various leadership capacities at the Children/ Teens department of Zion Children Fellowship Inc. Chuks has over 25 years of experience working with children and youth. He has a deep passion for supporting children and youth to reach their full potential. He has supported much street-entrenched and high-risk youth on the journey to finding the right path for their lives. Many of the young people who passed through his tutelage are living successful lives all over the world. The joy of seeing them thrive has been one of the rewards of living a life in service to others. He has also partnered with charities and donors to execute medical outreaches and other outreaches to underprivileged people in various communities in Nigeria. Earlier in his career, Chuks worked for many years as a distinguished law enforcement officer serving Nigerians. Chuks is married to Catherine Nkem Nwachukwu and they are blessed with a beautiful daughter, Ogechukwu Nwachukwu.
Director Advocacy/Support Services
Azuka Ebinne is the Staff Head Clinician at the University of Nigeria Law Clinic where she leads practical sessions with undergraduate law students with regard to litigation and legal drafting. She counsels and directs law students who have different challenges in their academic and social lives. In her role, Azuka organizes campaigns and sensitization workshops with different Human Rights organizations affiliated with the Law Clinic like Amnesty International and the Federation of Women Lawyers amongst others. Azuka was called to the Nigerian Bar over 18 years ago and has worked with law firms like Josiah Onyema & Associates and Akaraiwe & Associates. As a project officer with Civil Resource Development and Documentation Centre, she was part of a team that managed high-profile projects like the South East of Nigeria Judges’ Colloquium. In this role, she and her team also provided legal advice to NGOs that represent widows and low-income earners in their quest for justice. At the start of her legal career, Azuka served as a legal officer at the Federal Ministry of Justice, Enugu. She has appeared before High Courts, Magistrate Courts, and Customary Courts. Azuka possesses a Post Graduate Diploma in Law and is a member of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Christian Lawyers Fellowship of Nigeria (CLASFON), and Institute of Chartered Mediators and Conciliators.
Azuka volunteers in schools and NGOs and has been involved in several projects that have improved the family life of children, women, and men in her community and surrounding communities. She also supports young people to achieve their dreams in their chosen field of study through entrepreneurial and skill acquisition workshops. Azuka also volunteers in mission outreaches and crusades to reach the rural areas. She enjoys working with young people and serves as a youth coach/mentor in her church. the Redeemed Christian Church of God, Graceland Parish, Enugu, where she coaches young people in the positive lifestyle and building skills that support them in making positive decisions in life.
A resolute lover of God whose passion for the things of God is unquenchable. Azuka believes that making a difference in the lives of people through our acts of kindness is the heartbeat of God and the whole essence of human existence.
Director Social Services
Rosemary obtained a bachelor’s degree in economics from Nigeria and a Master’s in Development Economics from the University of Northern British Columbia, Canada. She started her career with Zenith bank Plc, where she worked in operations for 6 years before proceeding to work as a Finance Manager with VAAB Engineering Ltd. She later moved on to Fide Homes Ltd where she worked as a business analyst with Fide.
Rosemary currently works as a community program officer in Canada with the public service. Throughout her career, Rosemary has administered and implemented a variety of social assistance programs and community services with the aim of promoting self-reliance. As a development economist identifying gaps, meeting needs, and enhancing the prosperity and quality of life are of utmost importance to her.
Rosemary was raised by parents who are passionate about making a difference. Her parents exemplified service to others by always helping those in need. Her upbringing left an indelible impression on her so Rosemary understands that her life’s purpose is centered on making a positive difference in the lives of others. Rosemary partners with VBA Foundation in Nigeria to meet the needs of hundreds of children in orphanages and shelter homes yearly and sponsor the education of some of the children who cannot afford to pay their fees. In Canada, she participates in outreach programs where she has the opportunity to be part of a team that provides food, clothes, and other donations to people in need. Reaching out to the poor is a life mission for Rosemary and she pursues it vigorously because she finds joy and fulfillment in doing so. Rosemary states that “giving connects me to others, creating a stronger community and helping to build a happier society”.