Ramatu Bangura

Ramatu Hi Res_4715Ramatu serves as program officer for the foundation’s Advancing Adolescent Girls’ Rights initiative. She has spent the last 20 years working with and on behalf of adolescent girls in New York City, Washington DC, and as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Costa Rica.

Prior to joining NoVo, Ramatu served as Program Director at the Sauti Yetu Center for African Women in the South Bronx, where she founded and managed a program designed to meet the educational, developmental, leadership and college readiness needs of immigrant young women from West Africa. She engaged in advocacy and research on a host of issues impacting transnational girls, including early and forced marriage, sexual violence, trafficking, commercial sexual exploitation, and educational access for English Language Learners. Ramatu has also managed girls’ programs for organizations such as GEMS, Girls’ Educational & Mentoring Services; and the DC Rape Crisis Center.

While working in community-based organizations, Ramatu earned both a Masters of Education (EdM) and Doctorate of Education (EdD) in International & Transcultural Studies Teachers College, Columbia University. Her dissertation, entitled In Pursuit of Success: The Educational Identities and Decision-making of African Girls with Limited Formal Schooling utilized African feminism to examine how immigrant girls with limited formal schooling navigate American schools, and make decisions about college and marriage.

In her free time, Ramatu spends time with her daughter and together they dance and listen to Stevie Wonder.

“In a troubled world, I pray the Lord to keep, keep hatred from the mighty… And the mighty from small, Heaven help us all.” –Stevie Wonder (1973)