QUEEN OF THE CASTLE (BOARD CHAIRPERSON)
Karen Clune brings nearly 20 years of global development experience to Learn to Play. Most recently, Karen was the Innovation Team Lead within the U.S. Agency for International Development’s Global Health Bureau. She identified and developed initiatives, partnerships, and activities to catalyze and accelerate ground-breaking innovations for global health.
Evgeniya had always aspired to become an astronaut, but whilst at University found another passion in finance and dreamt of becoming the Minister of Finance of Bulgaria, where she is originally from.
Since then, she has spent 16 years in finance and auditing and is currently a partner at Deloitte & Touché Botswana.
Evgeniya spends her “free time” giving back to our planet and community. As a family, they make a conscious effort to recycle, reuse, try hard to reduce our consumption, and achieve sustainable purchasing habits.
I am a general practitioner currently in private practice. I have been practicing medicine for about 15 years. I started my career in the public sector at Princess Marina Hospital and Gaborone and Tlokweng District Health Management Teams. I have done a lot of healthcare outreach over the years and it was during these outreach visits that I realized how much basic health education was lacking in most of these rural communities.
TAAZIMA KALA ESSACK
I am is passionate about learning and discovering new ways to help make the environment and people around her thrive. Born and raised in Botswana, I am, by nature, a curious person who is always eager to grow and learn more and adventure to try new things. I love to travel, literature, my family, and baking up a storm.
I am a Public Relations professional and currently manage Hotwire Public Relations Consultancy. I hold a BA (Hons) English Language and Literature, MA English Literature text and Transmission, and an Associateship of King’s College London (AKC), (King’s College London, UK). I am the only Accredited Member of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (MCIPR) (UK) in Botswana and love investing more in growing in this industry that I love.
My technical background is in electrical engineering and having previously worked for a private mining company at operations at Jwaneng, in maintenance and projects for several years, I have now been currently working for an international development and financing institution based in Gaborone for some years. My role primarily focuses on implementing tasks along the Bank’s project management cycle and supporting strategy formulation, developing and maintaining relations with clients and partners, and monitoring the ongoing portfolio.
With 20 years of experience in a competitive environment, Lauren works in the diamond mining industry of Botswana. She found a unique opportunity that focuses on analyzing data. Being detail-oriented, drew to Lauren’s strengths. Having a strong technical background to analyze complex processes helped in developing, innovative robust solutions to challenges in reporting structures in this “sparkly” industry, which is not just all about the glitz and glamour.
PRIYANKA HANDA RAM
EMPRESS OF PLAY (FOUNDER & CEO)
Founder of Learn To Play, Priyanka Handa Ram was born and raised in Botswana and has used her 10 years of experience doing a multitude of social enterprise projects to create a more literate, happy, and healthy childhood for the clients she works with.
Priyanka is passionate about Play, Nature, and Literacy and incorporates these in her work as well as in her role as a published children’s author; writing stories about adventure, virtues, and conservation.
Early Childhood and Play-based literacy are Priyanka’s primary focus and she is pioneering programmes and organizations in Botswana to advocate for young children to be nurtured, educated, and protected