Aprajita is the Founding Director of Haiyya. Aprajita is a skilled and creative community organizer and campaigner based out of India. She has 5+ years of experience in organizational and team building, project design & ideation, strategic consulting, community building and training design. She has led various National and Regional level campaigns in India on issues of women voting rights, gender based violence, right to education and safe abortion. She also serves as a core team member of a global team of Mobilisation Lab.
Aprajita was recognized by Commonwealth Secretariat as the Regional winner of Commonwealth Youth Worker Award for Asia region in 2014. She is also the Global Affiliate member of Leading Change Network, a group of organizers who use Professor Marshall Ganz’s community organizing framework to drive social and political campaigns across the world.
Aprajita is a student of Harvard Kennedy School's Executive Education program on Leadership, Organizing and Action. She is a graduate from Tata Institute of Social Sciences where she pursued her Masters in Social Work and specialization in Gender Studies. She has worked for Digital Green and Special cell for Women and Children prior to founding Haiyya.
Sukhmani is Deputy Director at Haiyya and currently leading Haiyya's work and team in Delhi. At Haiyya she has been focusing on giving strategic directions to all our youth led and active community projects and campaigns. She is actively directing our work in grassroots organizing work enabling citizens to become leaders who build collective power in their local communities in order to demand an accountable and responsive government on civic issues such as sanitation, environment, health and gender. She is spearheading Youth4Environment, a grassroots youth movement to accelerate city wide change in Delhi's Air condition.
At Haiyya, she has lead the training and programs wing expanding the organizing framework to thousands of youth leaders. She wants to work towards a bigger collective of grassroots efforts making sustainable and scalable impact in the local communities focus on youth leadership development. With her innovative ideas, strategic thinking and managerial competency and eye for details, she is a great coach and a leader. Sukhmani has learned community organizing from Harvard Kennedy School under the mentorship of Prof. Marshall Ganz.
Sukhmani is a managerial graduate from University of Delhi (BBS) and holds an MA in Sociology. She has previously worked with the Tony Blair Faith Foundation, UNICEF on citizen’s charter working on a global case study (published) and with corporate in financial field. She has an immense interest in travelling and reading.
Campaigns & Communications Manager
Mrinalini Dayal is a Campaign Manager at Haiyya and she is currently heading Haiyya’s campaign on Young Women’s Access to Sexual and Reproductive Health ‘Health Over Stigma’ and the Communications Department. She brings a lot of creativity to the team with her wild ideas. She is also the one who engages and holds our youth community together by running our flagship event series ‘The New Narrative’.
Mrinalini is a graduate from the University of Toronto with a Honours Double Major in International Relations and History. She has previously led the innovative TEDxDelhi Fellowship Program in which fellows were trained in the framework of community organizing and simultaneously launched their campaigns on Urban City Pollution. Mrinalini is passionate about issues relating to gender, reproductive health and development. She believes her global exposure has shaped the way she looks at the world and Haiyya’s vision for Community led movements will lead to sustainable social change.
Madhura is the Campaign Manger at Haiyya. She is currently leading an on-ground project on Gender Sensitization in the state of Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Punjab and Delhi. Prior to Haiyya, Madhura has been a part of - Centre for Policy Research as the Communications officer. Her experience of interacting with faculty members and research associates to collate massive information and communication for events and outreach programs brings great value to the campaigns she leads with Haiyya. She wrote case studies from the field and led the video shoot teams on locations in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Punjab, West Bengal, Orissa, Bihar and Jharkhand for her Project with Pratham Education Foundation. Her experience of directly working with designers, printers, photographers and video producers bringing high quality communications expertise to the team.
She has led and been part of teams to design websites and information systems at Pratham. She was a core member of the copy and design team building communications material for leading organizations including UNDP, WHO, UNIDEF, DFID, etc. Madhura holds a Post Graduate Diploma in Journalism and Mass Communication and Child Guidance Certificate Course both from IGNOU and Bachelor of Arts, History Honors - Miranda House, Delhi University.
Alok is a Campaign Associate at Haiyya . He leads the field work for our campaigns, coordinating with leaders, students groups and ensuring all the logistical needs are in place. Alok has great relationship building which bring great advantage to our on-ground work. He has previously volunteered with Haiyya through events and then joined our team full time.
Before joining Haiyya, Alok was the College President for Leaders For Tomorrow, an NGO which facilitates opportunities for students to take action. He was als the Vice-President of IMPRESSIONS, the fine arts society at his college. Alok also led a Campaign ‘Anti Drug Anti Ragging’ as a Manager for Leaders for Tomorrow and worked on different projects of Leaders for Tomorrow such as Igniting Young Mind and Adapt a plant. Alok holds in Bachelor of Computer Science from PGDAV college , University of Delhi where he had been the promotional team head of the Department of Computer Science.
Projects & Business Development Manager
Natasha is the Business Development and Projects Manager at Haiyya. She is a core team member working since the inception of the organization to build and scale Haiyya's work. She is always on the lookout for interesting projects and campaign ideas by organizations and young leaders to build a larger social justice movement. She plays the role of a strategist, trainer and coach in the various functions of Haiyya.
Natasha is a Development Studies graduate from University of Sydney and comes from a Business studies background from Delhi University. Using her academic and professional experience she also oversees the communication work to strengthen branding and messaging. Her deep interests lie in working with marginalized communities and strengthening work the on gender, caste and sanitation issues.
She has previously worked in the role of Campaigns Coordinator managing 76 fellows across 3 campaigns on different community issues. She trains and coaches teams to build campaign strategy and implement it effectively. Natasha has also done trainings for TB activitists in India with a Harvard Med School and Partners in Health initiative. She has also worked with UnLtd India, a social enterprise incubator on communications and the YP Foundation with young girls using digital storytelling as a tool to right to expression.
HR & Finance
Piyali is the Associate Director at Haiyya. She works on the accounting and financing of the organization. She is the most lively and enthusiastic person on the team lifting up our spirits at all times. She is a graduate from Institute of Hotel Management, Hyderabad. Her experience of working in the Hospitality sector brings her with great relationship building skills to the team. She has previous worked as Client Relationship Manager and also in the digital marketing space building creative content for online and offline events and campaigns.
She believes that Haiyya is a one stop platform wherein one can learn, grow and lead. A step with Haiyya is a step forward to accept responsibility to bring change.
Anjali is the Campaign Manager at Haiyya wherein she coaches young leaders to build their campaigns and drive change. Anjali is the best example of leadership journey on our team where she had joined as a volunteer and today manages campaigns on the team. She started her journey with Haiyya as Team Leader in the Rise Up campaign to engage with women and increase their turnout in the Delhi State Assembly Elections 2013. This engagement led to her being a core team member for the women's access to safe spaces campaign in her neighborhood. With the experience of working on two campaigns, she stepped into the role of Training Corp and later as a Campaign associate with Haiyya running trainings and leading teams.
Anjali has completed her graduation from Lady Shri Ram College for Women in Economics(H) and then did her LL.B. from Faculty of Law, Delhi University. She became the President of her college union and continued to create spaces for students to engage in different events and activities. She brings a diverse skill set to the team with her academic knowledge in law and her rich on-ground campaign experience.
Vishal is a training corps at Haiyya, a law student at Amity Law School. Vishal started his journey as a fellow at Rise Up in 2013 and then worked as a team captain in Model Town constituency, where he organized more than 200 women to participate and vote in Delhi State Assembly elections 2013. He has been a constant pillar of support, motivation and inspiration to us. With his appeal towards perfection and great passion towards his work, he has the zeal to create the change and inspire people to join in the movement. Vishal has been involved as a training corps for the Fellowship 6.0. With Training corps, Vishal continues to work with us through his coaching and facilitation skills.
Esha's a Political Science student at Amity University, has been a part of YLAC's Policy in Action Program, is interested in public policy & research, loves debating, spoken word poetry and believes that "All that is necessary for Evil to triumph is for good people to do nothing." She is a core team member for HealthOverStigma and her role at Haiyya includes coordinating Defender activities- training & community meetings, online outreach, planning larger HOS strategy and other community events.
Kamya is majoring in Economics from Lady Shri Ram College for Women, Delhi University. As an intern with Haiyya and a leader (SRHR-Senior Defender) in the HOS Campaign, she handles the communications section, formulates plans of action for on-ground action and coordinates with SRHR-Defenders, providing coaching support and assistance whenever required to propagate the campaign further. She believes that to see a change, you need to actively take the initiative and work on bringing it about yourself - being aware and vocal about an issue is just the first step, not the last. She also likes to believe that she's funny, contrary to popular opinion. She is an ambivert and loves to engage in intellectually stimulating conversations whenever, wherever. Kamya’s other passions include reading, listening to old rock music and playing the drums.
Ruchika Kanoi started her journey with Haiyya in 2012 when she was a B.Com(H) student at P.G.D.A.V. College, University of Delhi. She joined a Fellow on the RIseUp campaign building one of the biggest volunteer team in the campaign to engage with women in her neighborhood. She lead the NSS in her college and later joined Bharat Calling to work in the villages of Madhya Pradesh linking and inspiring rural students to pursue Higher Education. She is a graduate from Tata Institute of Social Science specialising in community organization and development practice. She continues to engage with Haiyya in taken training sessions with new leaders. Currently she works with Barefoot College International, Tilonia, Rajasthan as an Outreach Coordinator for their Programme Enriche: Enterprise, Empowerment and Education, by and for Rural Women.
Maya Bhardwaj is a community organizer with Faith in New York, building local leadership to obtain affordable housing as well as representative government through voter engagement, criminal justice reform, and racial and social justice for faith communities in New York City. She has previously helped start an organizing firm fighting violence against women in her home country of India, organized on several election cycles throughout the US, and supported community health organizing in Cambodia, small-holder farmer organizing in Argentina, and student organizing in France.
She is also an avid world traveler and nomad, having traveled in over 30 countries, is passionate about collaborative art spaces in community activism, and hopes to complete her scuba diving divemaster certification very soon.
Mick is from Perth in Western Australia. He grew up in a big family who taught him that life is about looking after one another. Inspired by his family's immigrant story, when he was 18 he moved across the country to Melbourne. That's where he joined the Labor Party, and first got involved in the environment movement.
He spent years working with coal communities, unions and citizens to build political power for climate justice, before going to Harvard in 2013 as a Gleitsman Fellow. There he began working with Marshall as a coach and teacher of organizing and public narrative, which is how he started working with Aprajita and Haiyya. He now organizes with SEIU Healthcare Pennsylvania, a union of healthcare workers fighting for better healthcare and a fair economy. He believes deeply in the power of collective action to build and shift power, and is inspired by Haiyya's work to do that .
Anya developed a passion for economic, racial and social justice through her experiences growing up in the midwest in the United States. She started her career in organizing in college at the University of Minnesota in 2008 where she both organized around racial justice issues on campus and tenant rights off campus. Since then, she has worked for the Service Employees International Union, the largest worker union in America, worked on a critical GLBTQ rights statewide campaign in Minnesota and won city-wide electoral reform in Minneapolis. She worked for 6 months in Mumbai as Organizing Director at Haiyya in 2014 before she moved to Oakland, California where she currently serves as Lead Organizer at Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment where she has been the past 2 years. She believes that the most effective method of change is through grassroots community organizing: lifting up the voices of and building power with oppressed communities to fight for structural, sustainable and meaningful justice. "Those who say it can't be done are usually interrupted by those doing it." - James Baldwin.
Richa Hingorani has over 5 years of work experience with a Master’s degree in Development Studies from the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies. She currrently leads media, communications and partnerships at Girl Rising India. Beginning her career with a leading news channel NDTV, Richa soon became one of its youngest producers. Keen to work with marginalized communities directly, she made a switch to the nonprofit sector, and joined a civil society organization called Self Employed Women’s Association (SEWA), where she was tasked with the job of setting up its media and communications department and create robust communication models to spread awareness about women’s empowerment, and marginalized girls’ access to education. She progressed to join a start-up, Indus Action, wherein she built an expansive campaign to bridge information gap regarding a provision under Right to Education Act. She has also briefly worked with Haiyya on a campaign to improve women's access to public spaces wherein she had the opportunity of leveraging teachings from Harvard Kennedy School's Executive Education Program in "Leadership, Organizing, and Action".
Board of Advisors
Marshall Ganz is a senior lecturer in public policy at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. He teaches, researches and writes on leadership, organization and strategy in social movements, civic associations, and politics. He got his start in organizing with Cesar Chavez on the staff of the United Farm Workers, and worked for sixteen years before becoming a trainer and organizer for political campaigns, unions and nonprofit groups. He is credited with devising the successful grassroots organizing model and training for Barack Obama’s winning 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns. Marshall has a BA from the Harvard College and was awarded the MPA by the Kennedy School in 1993 and completed his PhD in sociology from the Kennedy School in 2000.
Shivani Kumar is a Development design, implementation and advocacy professional with over 12 years of experience in NGOs, International Organizations, Corporates and Politics. Currently at InCircle, she is the Principal-InGen Program – A program targeted at accelerating women’s economic inclusion.
Shivani began her career as part of Child In Need Institute, where she led a project which was instrumental in designing and advocating for a program of Community Health Volunteers in the state of Jharkhand. She continued to work on the issue of better access to reproductive and child health in rural India as part of Constella Futures, An International Public Health organization. She continued to explore the development sector and its interplay with politics through her work with a Member of Parliament from Haryana. She was instrumental in effectively utilizing platforms such as the District Vigilance and Monitoring committee, building collaborations between government and sector experts to reform the education system and Health delivery in Haryana, building the first cross party alliance of Members of Parliament on reproductive health and rights and training the women sarpanches for effective implementation of their roles as heads of the villages. As part of the CSR team at JSW Foundation, she focussed on early childhood education and health.
Shivani holds a MA in Public Policy from Harvard Kennedy School, USA. At Harvard, she worked closely with Marshall Ganz on coaching multiple campaigns across countries, social sectors and politics. She also holds an MA in Social Work from Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai. During her years at TISS, she worked with Maulana Azad Medical College to analyse and develop an effective communication plan for the Delhi State Government’s campaign on eradicating Tuberculosis. Shivani also holds a BA (Hons) in History from St Stephen’s College, Delhi University.
Mahesh Kanumury has over 25 years of venture capital, management consulting and operating experience. Mahesh is the Managing Director & Founder of Arivali Partners where he provides advisory and investment services to for- profit social enterprises (companies that have the potential to become $1B+ organizations and impact 1M+ lives).
Mahesh was a General Partner at a $260M early stage venture capital fund based out of the Silicon Valley where he invested and successfully nurtured the growth and successful exit of several companies. Mahesh also worked at McKinsey in the US and India where he led a number of high-impact initiatives at the CXO level. Prior to McKinsey, Mahesh worked at Schlumberger Technologies where he led large scale software development efforts and commercialization of new technologies.
Mahesh has an MBA from Harvard Business School, an MS in Engineering from Purdue University and BS in Engineering from Indian Institute of Technology, Chennai. Mahesh enjoys running, music and meditation. He is also a Faculty at the Art of Living Foundation.