Unfolding Community Potential

Fontes Foundation is a Norwegian NGO that works with water and education projects. We aim to remain a small and specialised organisation, focusing on efficiency, innovation and a close cooperation with the communities and local authorities. The activities of Fontes Foundation are currently concentrated in Western Uganda and in the capital, Kampala.

Our Mission

We, the Fontes Family, strive to empower disadvantaged communities. Focusing on long-term impact, always creating innovative solutions and employing local resources, we aim for integrated community development.

Our Vision

We envision empowered communities, able to collaborate for the common good, develop themselves and realize their potential.

Core Values

We take a long-term perspective.

We are constantly learning by research.

We encourage out-of-the-box thinking.

We embrace honesty, openness and responsibility – among ourselves and for our stakeholders.

We focus on the common good of communities.

We focus on the efficient use of local resources.

The Fontes Foundation Family

Fontes Foundation Uganda Management

The management staff of Fontes Foundation Uganda is responsible for the daily running of the organization’s water, education and youth projects at the organization’s head office in Kampala, Uganda, as well as at the Fontes Youth Centre in Bunga at the outskirts of the city.

Isabel Odida

Director – Uganda

As director, Isabel Odida is responsible for the strategic development of the organisation, as well as the water, education, and youth projects. From a background in Information Technology, she has worked for 10 years at MTN, the largest telecom company in Uganda, notably as a Data Planning Engineer. After stints as Chief Technology Officer for Raintree Farms and as Business Development Director for the African market at The Network Center, she joined the Fontes Foundation Uganda team in March 2020 as the new Director. Her skillset makes Isabel a valuable contributor to the success of our new tech-oriented education program Refactory. Alongside her work, she also provides training on technical subject matters across the African continent for the African Network Operators Group and is an Internet Society (ISOC) fellow to the Internet Engineering Taskforce.

Dorothy Oyella

Job Placement Programme Cordinator

Dorothy joined the team in February 2020. She provides the link between students graduating from Refactory and companies interested in hiring. After graduating from Makerere University, she applied her public relations and communications skills as a Customer Service Manager for MTN. Dorothy has also been regularly involved with the AIDS Support Organization (TASO) in projects that help the livelihood of locals suffering from HIV. The biggest drive in her work is the development of the students she assists, as Dorothy draws lots of motivation from influencing people and supporting career growth. This notably prompted her to start a personal initiative in Northern Uganda, the Career Development Programme.

Jesca Nakayondo

Administrative Officer

Jesca joined the Fontes Foundation head office in October 2019. However, her story with us started long before that, as Jesca graduated from one our Youth Center’s first intakes. She then worked as an Administrative Assistant for Laboremus Uganda, where she shared the offices with the Fontes Foundation head office staff.  As we moved our office, Jesca ended up wanting to change environment and joined us. Nowadays, she handles all the accounts from our various projects, and assists both the foundation and all of its employees in administrative issues. She feels proud to give back to the organization that supported her growth, and Jesca regularly gives motivational speeches to our current students.

Denis Ssebugwawo

Youth Center Manager

Before joining the Fontes Foundation, Denis has worked on local projects with Médecins Sans Frontières. He was first involved with us in January 2012, when he volunteered in the construction and the set up of the Youth Center. Thanks to his hard work and commitment, he was then contracted as support staff, before being promoted to administrative assistant. Since 2018, Denis has been our Youth Center Manager, a role he relishes due to his interest in counseling and business administration. He maintains valuable contact with all the staff involved in running the Center, as well as with the community he seeks to empower. He has a passion for gardening and landscaping, and has thus been heavily involved in the design of our compound and its maintenance.

The Founder Family

The Koestler family, which has founded Fontes Foundation more than 10 years ago, is still closely involved into the running of the organization in various forms by directing, guiding and advising the local management in Uganda. The Koestler family members are working on a pro bono/voluntary basis and do not receive a salary for their engagement with Fontes Foundation.

Andreas Koestler

Founder & Director

Andreas G. Koestler (born 1953) has a PhD in Geology from Switzerland and worked through his consulting company for the oil industry in Norway. He started a NGO (Yme Foundation) in 1990. For over 25 years he built up an extensive competence in the water and sanitation sector, with both development and emergency projects all over the world, but always with focus on Africa. In 2006, Andreas started to work as a water- sanitation and disaster management advisor in the Norwegian Red Cross while a colleague was taking over the responsibility for Yme. Fontes Foundation was created in 2006 to continue some of the projects in Uganda and DR Congo. Today, Andreas is still doing consultancy work through Fontes AS and Fontes Invest in Norway and Fontes GmbH in Switzerland and is involved in development projects in Uganda, DR Congo and Ghana. He is mainly focusing on how to establish sustainable water and sanitation services through commercial investments and specified business models in Africa. He is also a Guest-lecturer at the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland with focus on Leadership in Humanitarian Crises.

Lucrezia Biteete (formerly Koestler)

Advisor & Chairperson of the Board in Uganda, former Regional Coordinator

Lucrezia (born 1983) has worked with development projects in Africa since 2005. She was the Chairperson of the Board of Fontes Foundation in Norway from 2007 to 2010, and has been the Chairperson of the Board of Fontes Foundation in Uganda since she stepped down as Regional Coordinator in 2014. From 2014 to 2017 she managed and built up Laboremus Uganda Ltd, a software development company in Uganda with clients in Norway and East Africa. It was during her time at Laboremus that the Refactory project was conceptualized, and she is currently supporting this project as strategic advisor. Lucrezia has extensive experience from the water, sanitation, IT and financial sectors in Africa. She also sits on boards for several social enterprises and start-ups in the African market, and was the Chairperson for the Nordic Business Association in Uganda from 2014 to 2016. She lives in Kampala with her husband, Ruyooka, who also previously worked for Fontes Foundation and supports the organisation.

Marius Koestler

Advisor, former Programme Coordinator

Marius Koestler (born 1985) holds a BA in Business Administration (Bachelor) from the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland and a Master in International Studies – Peace and Conflict Resolution from the University of Queensland, Brisbane. He has been actively involved in Fontes’ projects since 2004, and this led him to found Laboremus Uganda Ltd in 2013, a software development company in Kampala. He has worked in different leadership positions of the organization’s parent company and main client, Laboremus Oslo AS (now Quesnay), including CEO, until August 2019. He was also actively involved in developing the Refactory concept, a project where Fontes Foundation is partnering with Laboremus Uganda Ltd. Marius is the entrepreneur of the family, and in 2014 he founded a tourism initiative on an island in Lake Victoria, Walindi Point. In 2020, he was part of Antler Norway, an accelerator programme for startup founders.

Valentin Koestler

Technical Advisor & Accountant

Valentin Koestler (born 1989) holds a MSc in Civil Engineering from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (EPFL) in Lausanne, Switzerland. Since 2005, he has been involved in Fontes’ projects in Uganda and has among others managed several of the drinking water project implementations. He currently works as a senior engineer at the Norwegian Directorate for Water Resources and Energy, but continues to be an important contributor to our technical know-how. In addition, Valentin is the accountant for Fontes Foundation, a task he does on a voluntary basis.

Barbara Koestler

Fundraiser and Donor Relations

Barbara Koestler works as a music teacher and music therapist at the School for Congenitally Deafblind in Oslo. She also teaches music in kindergartens. She has been involved in networking and fundraising activities for Fontes Foundation since the establishment of the organization, being the connection point between Norwegian kindergartens and schools, and the African schools that are supported by Fontes Foundation in Uganda. In addition, Barbara is responsible for the communication between Fontes Foundation and the scholarship sponsors in Europe.

The Board Members

Fontes Foundation Norway

  • Joseph Allen, Senior Geologist at Norconsult AS. American national.
  • Anne Signe Hørstad, WASH Specialist, Norwegian Red Cross. Norwegian national.
  • Andreas G. Koestler, Director, Fontes AS and Fontes Invest AS. Swiss national.

Fontes Foundation Uganda

  • Timothy Musoke, Software engineer educated in the USA, Founder and CTO at Laboremus  Uganda Ltd. Ugandan national
  • Rowena Musinguzi, worked at Standard Chartered Bank. Previously General manager of Savannah Resort Hotel (https://savannahresorthotel.com), Consulted with NFT, providing readiness for work training to young graduates in cooperation with Barclays bank (https://www.brightermonday.co.ug/blog/barclays-ready). Now General Manager of Travel Neza (https://www.travelneza.com/) Ugandan national.
  • James Byaruhanga, Founder of Roke Telkom (https://www.roketelkom.co.ug), the biggest Ugandan Internet service provider. Now CEO of Raxio, an investment to build the first local commercial data centre in Uganda (https://www.raxio.co.ug) Ugandan national.
  • Daniel Stern, Director of Uconnect helping to pioneer Internet technologies in Uganda. American national.
  • Michael Pletscher, former Regional Coordinator Fontes Foundation Uganda, currently works at Kuratle Group in Switzerland as an e-commerce manager. Swiss national.
  • Lucrezia Biteete, former Regional Coordinator Fontes Foundation Uganda, former Managing Director of Laboremus Uganda Ltd, former chair person of Nordic Business Association, founder and team member of Norwegian African Business Association, shareholder and board member of various business ventures in Uganda and DRC. Now strategic advisor at Refactory (through Fontes Foundation).
Valentin KoestlerAbout Us