Our Team

Naresh Kachoria

Founder and Executive Director

Naresh founded Step Up after working as the Economic Development Advisor in Botswana for an international NGO funded by USAID. He saw too many young people leaving school with nowhere to go and nothing to do, instead engaging in unproductive behaviors that prevent them from living healthy and productive lives. He is passionate about education, experiential learning, cultural exchange and ensuring all young people have opportunities to thrive in school and the community. After spending his first career in the private sector as a business, marketing and account executive, Naresh brings a business-like focus on outcomes, vision and strategic planning to Step Up. Naresh has spent the most recent 10 years living in and traveling between the US and Africa building programs, raising resources and advocating for quality initiatives that truly impact the lives of youth and young adults. Naresh holds an EdM in International Educational Development and a BS in Advertising, both from Boston University, and a M.B.A from the Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland.

Mooketsi Maruping

Center Director
Maruping has extensive experience directing youth development and health programs at the community level in Botswana. As Center Director for Step Up in Botswana, Maruping is responsible for the day-to-day design, execution and monitoring of programs, developing relationships with key stakeholders and for continuously identifying opportunities that meet the needs of children and youth. Before joining Step Up, Maruping oversaw youth programming and financial management for BBM, a local Botswana nonprofit receiving PEPFAR support through USAID to improve the lives of marginalized youth, including girls and women. During his time as the Youth Program Manager, Maruping developed and implemented an entrepreneurship, vocational training and job readiness program funded through a private partnership with Barclays Bank Botswana. As a volunteer, Maruping serves in a leadership role for his local crime prevention committee. He also works with the Lions Club of Gaborone. Maruping holds a BA in Business Entrepreneurship from the University for Small States of the Commonwealth. He has an Accounting certificate from Gaborone Institute of Professional Studies and has completed financial training from Botswana Accountancy College. Maruping is currently pursuing a business management degree from BOCODOL in Botswana.

Mompati Mbakhwa

Programs Manager

As the Programs Manager at Step Up, Mompati oversees the strategy, planning, design, execution and assessment of all ACCESS Education, Step Forward and Parent Support programs. He is on the frontlines of our programming and works to ensure the Step Up approach is child-centered and impact-driven. Mompati also leads the programs team in identifying community partnerships and building relationships with stakeholders who help to advance the Step Up mission. Prior to joining Step Up, Mompati was a health and wellness peer educator, the secretary general under the Living and Learning community program and a member of the Society Against HIV/AIDS. He believes that education, training, mentoring and skills development are essential to empowering children and youth to realize their full potential. Mompati holds a Bachelor’s degree in Adult Education and Community Development from the University of Botswana.

Bonno Keitseng

Programs Officer

Bonno comes to Step Up after working as a Programs Officer in the Ministry of Youth Empowerment, Sport and Culture Development. While at the Ministry, Bonno organized performing arts programs, engaged more than 100 individual artists to showcase their work in exhibits and provided young community members with hands-on opportunities to create visual arts pieces. She is passionate about seeing young people in her community have opportunities to discover talents and use creativity to express themselves. As a Programs Officer at Step Up, Bonno works with the team to deepen the arts opportunities available to our Achievers, facilitates daily activities and supports the Parent Support program. Bonno holds a BA with honors in Communication, Media and Broadcasting and also received an Associate Degree in Public Relations, both from Limkokwing University.

Ontibile Mpho

Programs Officer

Ontibile works with the Step Up programs team to design and implement a range of creative arts, music and project-based learning activities for our primary and secondary school Achievers. While working as a Programs Officer at the Ministry of Youth Empowerment, Sport and Culture Development, Ontibile managed Youth Development Fund projects where young people received grants to start microenterprises. She also organized community cultural events that featured photographic exhibits, visual arts projects and local music talent. Ontibile supports and facilitates ACCESS, Step Forward and Parent Support group programs. She believes access to arts and experiential learning programs are essential components of a healthy community.  Ontibile holds a diploma in Public Relations and a BA with honors in Event Management form Limkokwing University.

Katrin Schatz

Katrin Schatz

Step Up Advisor

Katrin first visited Botswana while pursuing a four-month internship in Gaborone at the Friedrich-Ebert-Foundation, a political organization that advocates for social democracy and economic development. She has always been passionate about helping vulnerable members of the community and previously volunteered in Germany at an organization supporting young children with mental disabilities.  Katrin was instrumental in the design, planning and launch of our first ACCESS programs with grade five Achievers. After spending a year on the ground at Step Up in Molepolole working intimately with our first cohort of primary school students, Katrin has returned to Germany, but continues to closely support and advise the Step Up leadership team. Katrin holds a Masters Degree in Cultural Geography from the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg in Germany, where she also put her theoretical knowledge to practical use conducting fieldwork in Ethiopia and the Philippines.

Lebogang Telekelo

Programs Assistant

Lebogang is a Programs Assistant at Step Up where she inspires Achievers to develop proficient English language learning skills through creative writing, fun reading and collaborative presentation activities. Prior to joining Step Up, Lebogang was a teaching assistant at Motswasele Junior School and Sekgele Junior school. She also tutored children in English and Setswana at Springboard Humanism organization. Lebogang has a diploma in Secondary Education from Molepolole College of Education where she majored in English.

Dennisk Masina

Business Development Coordinator
Dennisk is the Business Development Coordinator at Step Up, supporting local efforts in Botswana to raise funding and develop partnerships that advance our mission. He also mentors the Achievers and leads the ICT skills training program with our primary school students. He previously worked on diverse youth education and peer support projects with several youth-based NGOs, including Junior Achievement Botswana, Botswana Student Network, Young African Leader Initiative, Youth Entrepreneur Network and International Youth Fellowship. Dennisk attended Botswana University of Agriculture and Natural Resources. He also holds certificates in Management Strategies, Workforce Collaboration and Business Start-Up from Young African Initiative.

Becca Brogan

Volunteer Coordinator
Becca is the Volunteer Coordinator at Step Up responsible for helping develop and implement a volunteer program that connects US-based students and adults to Step Up, both in the US and in Botswana. Prior to joining Step Up, Becca served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Botswana for two years. She worked as a health volunteer to develop the skills and capacity of children and youth in a rural village located in central Botswana. Some of the work included teaching students about HIV/AIDS using soccer, assisting in the organization of workshops on gender norms, gender based violence, parent child communication, economic empowerment, and multiple concurrent partners; and co-leading workshops for high school girls about teen pregnancy, prevention and contraception, and sexual reproductive health. Becca received a BS in Public Health, a BS in Kinesiology, and minors in Psychology and Education at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.