About Us

Who We Are

We Are GUTSY, Inc. is a Not-for-Profit 501 (c) (3) Organization registered in New Jersey, USA.  Its Board of Directors volunteer their time and resources to improving the lives of young children in Guyana. All funds raised go toward achieving our mission in Guyana.

Our Board of DIRECTORS

Janice Hall

Janice Hall

Founder and Chair

Janice’s relentlessness has caused her to beat the odds in her professional and personal life. She is now working to help others do the same. Janice is resilient and unwavering.

Janice Hall is the Founder and the heart of We Are GUTSY, Inc. She has spent most of her life working pro bono to develop and manage creative approaches and funding to help provide vulnerable children a new lease in life and has now turned her attention back to the land of her birth. Janice is relentless in her quest to help nurture young Guyanese by teaching them life skills to navigate the generational issues they face.

Janice is an active Board member of several not-for-profit Organizations in New Jersey, USA. She is an award winning Real Estate practitioner - she holds lifetime membership in the New Jersey Realtors Distinguished Sales Club. She has a Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of Guyana, and a Post Grad Dip. in Communications, UWI Jamaica.

Burnell Mingo

Burnell Mingo


Burnell neither commits nor engages without deep self-reflection and introspection. These traits allow him to make the right decisions in life.

Burnell Mingo has over 20 years of service in the Financial and Investment Banking sector with experience that includes Client Management, Project Management and Process Improvement. With his financial expertise Burnell adds value in managing resources for the transformation of children’s lives through the efforts of We Are GUTSY, Inc.

Burnell has a B.S., Accounting from Rutgers University, New Jersey and M.S., Information Systems from Stevens Institute of Technology, New Jersey.

Lourdeth Ferguson

Lourdeth Ferguson


A single parent to two accomplished young women, Lourdeth calls on her inner strength and faith to overcome adverse circumstances and to make a difference in the lives of others.

Lourdeth Ferguson brings to the We are GUTSY, Inc. Board her passion for developing and promoting the rights of Women and Girls. With over 25 years of experience in youth advocacy, intergovernmental engagement on gender equality, women’s empowerment and governance through her work at the United Nations, Ms. Ferguson provides strategic coordination and the global lens for executing the We Are Gutsy mission.

Ms. Ferguson holds a Bachelor's degree in Sociology from the University of Guyana and Master’s degree in Social Science from Long Island University, New York.

Nalini Tiwari

Nalini Tiwari Greenan


At age 15 and living in New York, Nalini’s goal was to become a successful entrepreneur. She quickly learned how to be resilient and to persevere and uses these attributes to help people from all walks of life.

Nalini Tiwari was born in Guyana and moved to New York in 1980. She is a graduate of Columbia University and lives in Manhattan.
Nalini started her advertising career at Young & Rubicam in New York and now owns and manages a marketing company that specializes in the Tourism, Alcohol and Fashion sectors and an importing company that imports Alcohol and Specialty Foods into the USA.

She is passionate about supporting organizations that advocate equal rights for all regardless of race, religion, gender or sexual orientation and that empower women and children. Nalini believes in the mission of We are Gutsy, Inc. and is committed to using her experience in fundraising for Non Profits to help We are Gutsy, Inc. accomplish its objectives.

Claire Goring

Claire Goring


Tenacious, undaunted, and fiercely loyal to everything Guyanese; Claire’s civic-mindedness makes her unstoppable.

For almost four decades, Claire Ann Goring has unselfishly advanced Guyana’s graphic and festival arts and has demonstrated a consistently high level of commitment to managing creativity and promoting the celebration of Guyanese creativity.

As the Cultural Director of the Guyana Cultural Association of New York since its inception in 2001, Claire has almost single-handedly been responsible for the respect the GCA has earned for its work to reaffirm and celebrate the folk heritage of Guyana’s multi-ethnic ancestry. More recently in 2015 Claire spearheaded the creation of the Guyana Cultural Association Arts and Cultural Center in New York.

For her impressive work Claire has received numerous accolades, citations and awards from City entities including the Brooklyn Borough President and the New York City Council.

Neil Bacchus

Neil Bacchus


It takes determination and pluck to succeed in a non-salaried career in an environment that was foreign and potentially hostile. Neil succeeded and excelled and has reached the pinnacle of success in his field.

Neil Bacchus, the founder and principal of The Bacchus Real Estate Group is well known in the Washington, DC, Maryland and Northern Virginia real estate market areas for his outstanding work ethic. With over 29 years of experience in the business, Neil has built a stellar reputation as one of the most trusted & admired real estate experts by focusing on exceptional client service and industry knowledge. He is the area’s real estate’s "go-to" for expert advice and in-depth knowledge of real estate trends. Neil has served on numerous executive boards in the fields of real estate, business, investment property and property management. He also owns and manages a property management company.

Despite Neil’s tremendous success as an entrepreneur, at heart Neil is a humble caring soul who is always ready to lend a helping hand to anyone in need. Clients, colleagues and friends alike turn to Neil for advice when faced with a challenge.

Deanna Butters

Deanna Butters


Straight out of college Deanna decided on a career that called for empathy and tolerance and has dedicated her life to caring for patients afflicted with Alzheimer’s disease. This speaks volumes about her compassion for others.

Deanna Butters brings to the Organization a passion for caring for others especially the elderly and has worked in this capacity since graduating with a BA in Psychology in Maryland USA. She also holds an MA in Organizational Management with a focus in Healthcare Administration.

As a sports enthusiast and very talented former women’s basketball player – she played in the North East Conference (NCAA) Finals while in college, Deanna appreciates the relationship between a healthy body and healthy mind and will focus her attention on the mind body connection for We Are GUTSY, Inc.

Our Work

We Are GUTSY, Inc. works with students, parents, volunteers and staff utilizing the curriculum we developed around our six critical focus areas, our resource center, media, and communication channels.
  • Beginning with a pilot program in pre-selected schools and youth groups to allow for program assessment and fine tuning
  • Develop a curriculum around each of our focus areas and train volunteers to lead face to face interactive discussions with the schools and youth groups and when necessary the parents
  • Set up a resource center staff with qualified, caring volunteers
  • Use electronic, print media and strategically placed billboards to reinforce our messages
  • Host a hotline service for anonymous reporting

Our Educators


Meet the Educators who shape the curriculum based on our core values: Self Reflection, Respect, Integrity, Honesty, Resilience, Defense, Parenting and Guidance that enables us to carry out our mission in Guyana.

Carla Meertens

Carla Felix Meertens, M.Ed.L.

Dr. Rosalind October

Dr. Rose October-Edun, Ph.D., LMSW, CASAC, ICADC

Dr. Desiree Heyliger

Dr. Desiree Heyliger, Ed.D.