Teams - Kaarak

Brajesh Pandey

Brajesh Pandey, our Executive Director is also a founder member of Kaarak. He is a Postgraduate in Development Studies (Rural Development) from Xavier Institute of Social Service (XISS), with more than 16 years of experience in project management and soc...

Brajesh has been actively engaged in promoting inclusive value approach, cluster development methodology and has worked on a large number of value chains including agricultural products, minor forest produce, handlooms and handicraft. He has worked specifically on designing production efficiency interventions as well as for setting up marketing linkages. He has been part of the core team of MSME Foundation in the past. He was also a UN Volunteer and has consulted and worked in different capacities for agencies like UNDP, ILO and UNFPA and CAPART (Ministry of Rural Development).

With extensive programme level experience in the area of livelihoods and social protection, Brajesh has led various inititives. He was the lead for UNDP-IKEA funded project on entrepreneurship training and support in establishment of enterprise for SHG women. He also led the assessment study to understand the scope of Social Protection measures as a means to improve child well –being in the state of Bihar. As a part of an independent team he conducted a mid-term evaluation of the ‘Convergence Against Child Labour Project’ (a Technical Cooperation project funded by USDOL). He has also undertaken review and assessment for capacity development strategies for UNDP India. Brajesh has successfully led and managed complex programs like, ‘Public Private Community Partnerships’ (a multi-stakeholder UNDP project), ‘Promotion of Rural Housing Model’ providing end-to-end project management support in five states, among others.

Brajesh has made significant contribution to Kaarak as an agency by designing and executing evaluations, developing high quality documents and leading the entire team.

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Mini Thakur

Mini Thakur comes with over 16 years of professional experience in managing and evaluating development initiatives and providing advisory services to leading national and international organisations. She holds a Masters in Migration Studies from the University of Sussex, Brighton and a Post Graduate Diploma in Rural Development from the Xavier Institute of Social Services, Ranchi.

Her specializations include RBM, social research, and documentation and her thematic experience spans across issues like Public Health, Gender Equity and Women’s Empowerment, Decent Work, Social Inclusion and Child Protection. Formulating M&E strategies, partnership strategies, and applying project management tools, log-frame and results based management techniques are her areas of expertise.

Mini has led and managed numerous advisory engagements with a variety of clients like ILO, UN Women, UNDP, UNICEF, MCH-STAR, Population Foundation of India, VV Giri National Labour Institute, Tata Chemical’s Ltd etc. She has also led evaluation studies for UN agencies like UN Women South Asia Sub-regional office, the ILO (Evaluation Unit, Geneva and India Country Office), and UNDP India. Prior to joining Kaarak, Mini worked with Ernst and Young as development sector expert, ‘Prevention of Trafficking and HIV AIDS (TAHA)' project of United Nations Development Program (UNDP) as a Consultant in M&E and Evidence Building.

Some of her key consultancies include: 'End-line Evaluation of Western India Gender Justice Programme for Oxfam India'; A social research study Social Inclusion – A Barrier Analysis commissioned by UNICEF India Country Office and Identifying and Documenting Best Practices in Technical Assistance of Global Standards in Development Health Sector for MCH-STAR (USAID supported consortium managed by Cardno-EMG.

At Kaarak, Mini has made significant contribution to programme, project and institutional evaluations. Mini also has the credit of developing numerous high-quality documents for the agency.

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Core Team

The experience and skills of our team members are diverse and mutually complementary, encompassing research, implementation, training, consulting, project management and networking in the areas of livelihood and enterprise promotion, microfinance, cluster development, health, communication, and social development.

Kaarak also partners with other organisations and individuals to successfully execute its client, knowledge development and capacity building commitments.

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