Faith Akovi Cooper is committed to improving the lives of people globally. As a global health and humanitarian professional, she has traveled to and worked in 37 countries, primarily Africa. She is the Regional Advisor for the West Africa Disaster Preparedness Initiative (WADPI), a US Government funded post Ebola capacity building program at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre in Accra, Ghana. There she works to strengthen West Africa countries capacities in disaster preparedness. Faith was born in Liberia and forced to flee her home as a result of one of the worst brutal wars which claimed the lives of more than 600,000 people including close relatives in Liberia. She barely escaped Liberia with her family and would later become a refugee in the Cote d’ Ivoire and Ghana for years before immigrating to the United States. As a result of her own personal experiences as a child survivor of war, she is dedicated to eliminating human suffering. Faith is at the forefront leading disaster preparedness training throughout Africa. She holds a dual Bachelors from Radford University in VA and a Masters of Public Administration with a concentration in Health Policy from George Mason University. She is a recognized […]
A former refugee, Joseph Lewis is currently a police sergeant with the Metro Transit Police Department of Washington, D.C. He was resettled in the United States in 1999 after fleeing the Liberian civil war and is an alumnus of the LIRS Migrant and Refugee Leadership Academy. Over the years, Joseph overcame many challenges as he adjusted to life in the United States. He was once homeless and slept on the streets of Washington D.C. With the support and encouragement of a Lutheran pastor, he was eventually able to attend college, and work for the success he has had. Joseph holds a Master’s degree in criminal justice, and is currently a student at the Ethnic Immigrant Institute of Theology at Concordia Seminary in St. Louis. He is married with two children. He says, “I have dedicated my life to helping other refugees because others invested in me. My courage is built on the foundation that it is in striving that we honor the sacrifices of all those who believe it is worthy to invest in us.”
Bhuwan Pyakurel’s journey as a refugee from Bhutan brought him to the United States in 2009 at age 30. He currently works with Primary One Health as an interpretive Service Coordinator, supporting immigrants and refugees with language in the health care setting. Bhuwan passionately works with local communities on issues surrounding education. Currently residing in Columbus, Ohio, Bhuwan’s community is predominantly low income refugees and immigrants from Somalia and Bhutan. His efforts include organizing meetings and inviting local speakers from the school district to explain the American education system to community parents. Bhuwan desires to educate more members from his community about advocacy and how they can fight for their cause.