María Verónica Celis Vergara, aka Vero, co-created EnlightAID’s concept in 2015 and has worked with several aid organizations to develop EnlightAID over the past two years. Her inspiration comes from growing up in Latin America, experiencing challenges first hand, living in places where corruption is endemic and where access to basic human needs can at times be incredibly difficult.
Vero, is a Chilean Architect with a Masters in Landscape & Territory, and has a LEED® Green Associate professional accreditation. She has over 6 years of experience in design and construction of projects in the industrial, housing, educational and penitentiary sectors. Along with EnlightAID, she currently volunteers for the U.S. Green Building Council serving as part of the Location and Planning Technical Advisory Group. Prior to EnlightAID, Vero led a multidisciplinary sustainable design team and was part of the architectural discipline at a global company, delivering projects in Chile, Argentina and Canada.
Vero is the middle of 5 sisters, she has lived internationally and is currently based in the south of Germany where she lives with her husband, their two dogs and their cat.
Klaus Edvard Hatle was inspired to do something about the AID business from living in Africa as a kid where his dad worked for Norad (Norwegian Agency For Development Cooperation) and helped build the infrastructure in Tanzania. He realized the severe distrust in charities and the corruption taking place in virtually all countries. So why not combine technology with the mission to make AID transparent?
Klaus has worked for over 18 years in the IT industry, in Europe and USA, and has lived in 7 countries in Europe, America and Africa. He has product experience in engineering and financial ERP software and extensive experience in Professional Services, Management, Sales, Customer Relations and Product Marketing.
Klaus loves to work with people from all different cultures, being out in nature, sports, climbing and being with his two kids, and the rest of the Hatle family in Norway.
Luis Patricio Infanta Cáceres, aka Pato, has the inspiration and desire to change things. It comes from living in a society and a country where the rich get richer and the poor get poorer, inequality and corruption being a constant problem and affecting people with fewer resources.
Pato is an Electrical Engineer with over 5 years of experience in project design, construction and commissioning, in mining, housing and hospital projects, to name a few. He is passionate about sustainable design, and has a LEED® Green Associate professional accreditation.
Pato is the youngest of five brothers. It was born in the north of Chile, in the disappeared mining camp of Chuquicamata (the largest open pit copper mine in the world). He is passionate about music, especially for heavy metal which led him to learn guitar and bass guitar, being his main hobby. And lives in Santiago with a little "doggy daughter" called Pancha.
Joakim Eide has a bachelors degree in information technology, and 9 years of professional experience developing web applications and platforms. He has extensive experience in customer management and IT systems planning and design. Joakim is passionate about innovative and disruptive technology.
Joakim lives in Oslo and strives to be an engaging participant in the growing community for creating more sustainable systems.
Klaus and Vero met in Canada in 2012, she was working for a Canadian engineering company with offices in Chile and had been assigned to work close to Toronto for a few months, Klaus was working for the company providing the software to this firm.
After years of friendship, in the beginning of 2015, Vero who sincerely wished to make a positive impact on her own country, suggested to Klaus the idea of creating a charity with the goal of building public schools in Chile, where access to quality and affordable education is a problem. However, aware of the lack of trust in aid organizations, they decided that a charity was not enough and that they needed much more to succeed.
The first idea was to sell a product and using the profit to fund future schools, transforming the charity concept into a social business. They also envisioned a platform in which each product got registered into the customer’s school project of choice and after reaching that project’s budget goal, each customer would receive information on where their money would be spent and the actions taking place in real time, thus creating full transparency.
At this point, another person was required to balance the team, Pato would become the third member of the organization being our main contact in Chile, contributing to establish relationships between EnlightAID and potential schools to work with.
In May 2016, Vero and Klaus presented the concept at the Oslo Freedom Forum and were approached by several non-profit organizations who wished to use the EnlightAID platform to ensure transparency in their own work, this was surprising since the original idea was to use the platform for one charity. The NGOs expressed that the charity business needed to take a stand against corruption and were extremely positive to show the world the inner workings of their organizations and projects. They were delighted that EnlightAID was planning to build a platform to raise funds and show the flow of money throughout the projects.
As a result, the team decided to develop EnlightAID in two stages, firstly creating the transparency platform to help fight corruption and secondly establishing a foundation to build schools in Chile.
In October 2016, Klaus and Vero, while presenting at the Oslo Innovation Week as part of Tech for Freedom, met Joakim and the team felt complete. Joakim, brought a high level of programming expertise, bringing EnlightAID from the conceptual stage into reality. Together, the teams’ goal is to help others create a better future for their communities and contribute to the ongoing fight against corruption.