People talking languages Nova


At Nova, people are the core of everything we do. Our human approach to all aspects of our work generates a family feel. Together, we make social change happen, day by day, one person at a time. Meet the people supporting our vision for the world:


At Nova, people are the core of everything we do. Our human approach to all aspects of our work generates a family feel. Together, we make social change happen, day by day, one person at a time. Meet the people supporting our vision for the world:

Tieu Pham

Maths Tutor: Born in Saigon

Born in Saigon weeks after its fall. Escaped in a leaky boat and spent time in a Philippine refugee camp. Accepted to the coldest place on Earth (Harrogate in winter) in the late 70s. Had a grand tour of various (council) estates of England before living out my teens in London’s East End. In the 90s met my partner, in the more elegant environs of Bath.

Tieu Pham Maths Tutor

Ayla Kolakovich

Finance and Office Manager: Born in the former Yugoslavia

Growing up in Yugoslavia (now Bosnia & Herzegovina) I always felt my spiritual home was in England. In 1992 my body followed my soul and my dream came true, I came to live first in Berkshire and then in London. My Bosnian heritage is my anchor, my building blocks, however it is my Britishness that makes me who I am.

Conor Fitzpatrick Maths Home School Support Tutor Nova New Opportunities People

Conor Fitzpatrick

Children’s Maths Tutor: Born in Belfast

Born in Belfast in the 80’s at the tail end of the troubles, but thankfully grew up in peaceful times. I am a sport, music and Maths enthusiast. I have spent my adult life travelling and teaching in different places around the world including, England, Ghana, Australia, New Zealand, Peru, Canada and now settled in Scotland.

Nova New Opportunities People

Fiona Hutmacher

IAG Advisor: Born in Switzerland

Born 1991 in the heart of the Swiss mountains. Brought up on the family farm in a small, traditional farming village with a modern, forward-thinking and convention-breaking superhero mum (& a dad who taught me to climb). Knew the word for car in Somali, Swiss, French and English at the age of 4 (Sadly “babur” is the only Somali word I have in my vocabulary today). Studied Law and human rights at a bilingual (German-French) university. Have worked/studied in Greece, la Reunion, France, Morocco, Cuba, Switzerland and of course the UK. Currently continuing my Spanish learning with an amazing Ecuadorian tutor. Proud to identify as a migrant.

Nova People

Mirjana Majerski

Administrator and Receptionist: Born in Bosnia & Herzegovina

Born in Bosnia and Herzegovina, former Yugoslavia. Moved to England in 1993 due to the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina. During the war I realised my passion for helping others and wished to pursue that as a career in the future. That wish was fulfilled when I started working at Nova in 2007 and I hope to continue for many years to come.

Tieu Pham Maths Tutor

Tieu Pham

Maths Tutor: Born in Saigon

Born in Saigon weeks after its fall. Escaped in a leaky boat and spent time in a Philippine refugee camp. Accepted to the coldest place on Earth (Harrogate in winter) in the late 70s. Had a grand tour of various (council) estates of England before living out my teens in London’s East End. In the 90s met my partner, in the more elegant environs of Bath.

Aimee Ling

Aimee Ling

Head of Community and Communications: Born in Hertfordshire

Raised by two parents of mixed black and white heritage, both of whom were adopted into white families. My biological family spans the local Harrow Road area through to the USA and Ukraine. With a passion for connecting and understanding different cultures I've been fortunate to work and volunteer extensively overseas across Africa, Asia and the Americas.

Fiona Hutmacher Adviser Alex Coackley Adviser

Alex Coackley

Adviser: Born in Rwanda

Born in Rwanda to English and Welsh Parents, spent time as a child in Yemen, Benin, Senegal, Indonesia and Wales. Now settled in London raising two daughters in the East End.

Nova New Opportunities Team Our People Emma Butt Adviser

Emma Butt

IAG Advisor: Born in Southeast London

Born and bred in Southeast London, my family spans from various parts of Western Asia to the foothills of Charlton, south London. I have always had a passion for working with people, young and old, and have found yet another wonderful family and community at Nova.

Moira Conway Literacy Tutor Nova New Opportunies People

Moira Conway

English Tutor: Born in Geneva

Born in Geneva to British parents, with primary schooling in French leading to a lifetime's interest in languages and travel. I gained a degree in Modern Chinese Studies, followed soon after by a Shanghainese husband and an extensive second family in China. Now firmly rooted in London and recycling the language skills to throw a spotlight on English and explore the expressive potential of both the language and our lovely learners.

Nova People

Tom Charles

Trust and Grants Bid Writer: Born in Sheffield

Born in Sheffield to working class British, hippyish parents. I grew up in a city in managed decline, learning the importance of solidarity and loyalty, and the transcendent power of kindness. My journey has taken me to various stop-off points, geographically, ideologically and spiritually, but North Kensington, where I arrived in 2007, is the place I feel most at home because of its beautiful spirit: multicultural, diverse, vibrant and bohemian.

Lola Famubode Adviser Nova New Opportunities Team Our People

Lola Famubode

IAG Advisor: Born in London

Born in London to Nigerian parents who came to the UK to study in the early 70s, I moved back to Nigeria with my parents and older siblings to Nigeria as a toddler and lived in the suburbs of the university city of Ibadan. The city, although sprawling, remained rural in outlook and lifestyle, so my childhood memories are filled with countryside joy- playing football in the open fields and tree-climbing with my brothers(I am an only girl) in the daytime and listening to stories in the moonlight and gazing at stars in the evenings . I moved back to the UK in 2002 to go to university, met my wonderful husband and now we have two beautiful daughters and the cheekiest dog in the world called Laramia!

Fiona Clark English Home School Support Tutor Nova New Opportunities Team Our People

Fiona Clark

Children’s Tutor: Born in Tyneside

Born in 1975 to parents from two separate Scottish clans (the McGhees and the Wallaces), I grew up on the aptly named Scotch Estate in Jarrow, north-east of England. As a child, I toured almost all of Scotland with my parents, even the far-flung isles, during every school holiday. After attending universities in Sunderland, Nottingham and Pennsylvania and after teaching for several years in Surrey, I eventually moved back to the north-east and back to my roots, and married a descendant of the Campbell clan!

pauline-mckittrick Nova New Opportunities

Pauline McKittrick

Children’s Tutor: Born in Liverpool

I guess you could say I'm a lifelong learning, single parent, step parent, Sister, whose experience rich and into Recovery of all types; a late flowering coach/teacher history-freak on a mission to catch up; who cooks, travels, dances, reads, swims and meditates [but not all at the same time]; European of Irish descent, via Liverpool, Edinburgh, Chester, Wigan, Shrewsbury, Prague, Venice, Spain and all things Spanish; but only if you really have to put a label on me - and as I'm constantly evolving I may well be different tomorrow… :)

Katya Elina Service Manager Maths and ICT Tutor Nova New Opportunities Team Our People

Katya Elina

Head of Services: Born in Leningrad

Born and raised in Leningrad (now Saint Petersburg), Russia, to a family with many generations of educators. While studying mathematics at university, fell in love with teaching and have been working in education ever since. London has been my home for the past 20 years - its diversity and bustle remind me of my home city.

Matthew Barnett Children & Young People Education Coordinator Nova New Opportunities Team Our People

Matthew Barnett

Children & Young People’s Programme Coordinator: Born in Germany

Born in Germany, to English and Welsh Parents, after an unsettled start I eventually spent my formative years in Yorkshire. My working class family did a fantastic job of instilling their values of decency, solidarity and compassion for others. They inspired me to take chances and not limit myself, encouraging me to follow a more unconventional – and unlikely - career in the arts and eventually make my way down South to the big city to chase my dreams! I’ve now been settled in London for over 20 years and a little prouder every day to be a small part of our diverse and vibrant community.

Marija-Mirazic-Enrichment-and-Family-Support-Manager Nova New Opportunities Team Our People

Marija Mirazic

Enrichment and Family Support Manager: Born in Yugoslavia

Born in Serbia, Yugoslavia. In London since 1997. Moved to North Kensington in 2012 and found Nova. In my mother tongue, the word Nova means New. Nova has brought New Opportunities to me - just like it says in its name.

Lizzie Cho CEO Nova

Lizzie Cho

Director: Born in London

Born in London, 1972, to Jamaican dad and White British mum. Raised in South Wales. Lived in seven countries, married a Korean. Two sons of that mixed heritage with gay Italian godfathers. My own grandfather was born on Grenfell Road in North Kensington in 1910 - I've come full circle. Brought up in a single parent family, on an estate and proud of what I got from that :)'

Max de Lotbiniere ESOL Tutor Nova New Opportunities Team Our People

Max de Lotbiniere

English Tutor (Adults): Born in London

Born more than half a century ago within walking distance of Nova, I have ventured further afield, but not for long. If you stay still in these parts, the world seems to come to you. My main trade has been journalism, but I took up Esol teaching a decade ago, was taken on by Nova and have been here ever since.

Michael Volpe Development Nova New Opportunities Team Our People

Mike Volpe

Development Consultant: Born in Fulham

Born in 1965 to Italian immigrant parents - one of whom (guess which one!) made a run for the hills when I was a baby. Progressed from a slum in Shepherds Bush to a flat in Fulham Court and ended up at an experimental boarding school in Suffolk. Two children with mixed Italian Scottish genes, and one with Italian/Kiwi/Tongan genes

Kertrina Little Maths Home School Support Tutor

Kertrina Little

Children’s Maths Tutor: Born in Reading

Born in Reading, to Hong Kong parents. Wanted to explore my heritage after university, so decided to work in Hong Kong as a teacher. Moved to London after, now settled in Brighton and love being close to the sea.


Shirley Wakelin Chair

Shirley Wakelin: Chair

Shirley Wakelin joined the trustee team in October 2011 and became Chair in 2016. Following a 20+yr career in the pharmaceutical industry where she held a variety of leadership roles, Shirley now supports young leaders as they are promoted into people management positions. She believes that we can all achieve more when others believe in us and give us support and encouragement.

kanika Seth trustee

Kanika Seth: Trustee

Kanika is a Partner at EY with over 15 years financial services consulting experience in delivering complex compliance, regulatory, risk management, governance, technology and cyber security engagements.
Kanika has a Masters in Management from the London School of Economics and is a certified professional. She holds a variety of leadership roles across EY and is a key sponsor for diversity and inclusiveness initiatives within the financial services industry.

Jackie Randhawa Trustee

Jackie Randhawa: Trustee

Jackie Randhawa is an established marketing professional with international and local experience in the FMCG, TV, film and media industries. Jackie joined the Nova trustees board in 2015.

Suzy Kruger Trustee

Suzy Kruger: Trustee

Suzy is a qualified accountant with an MBA from London Business School. She has 20+ years’ experience working within finance and M&A for large corporates, primarily in the healthcare industry. Following her personal interest in health and wellbeing, Suzy is now a qualified nutritionist. She also owns a property investment company. Suzy joined the Board of Trustees in 2017.

Jonnie_Beverley treasurer Nova

Jonnie Beverley: Treasurer

Jonnie has been closely associated with Nova for over 20 years and was its Chair until 2 years ago, when he formally retired as deputy CEO of Westway Development Trust. His work for the Trust included working with migrant and refugee communities in K&C to help develop their voluntary services through joint projects, consortia, fundraising and support over the longer term. He is currently engaged part-time as a business & project development consultant with Surrey Docks Farm and remains a trustee of several charities in Kensington and Chelsea.

Anji Kang-Stewart trustee Nova

Anji Kang-Stewart: Trustee

Anji is Global Head of Marketing at Man Group. She is responsible for developing and implementing the firm’s marketing strategy to support Man’s global business across all client channels. She has sixteen years of experience across sales and marketing roles in asset management.

Prior to joining Man Group, Anji spent six years at Wellington Management as the ahead of EMEA Marketing. Previously Anji was Marketing Director at Neuberger Berman.

Anji holds a BSC and MA in Anthropology from University College London.


Growing together poster Nova New Opportunities


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