The Video
Our Story

Founded by Craig Esbeck, an American primary school teacher and Peace Corps Volunteer, Mango Tree was created to make learning both fun and effective. After experiencing the issues facing rural educators, Craig felt he could achieve this while generating local employment, making an important social impact and using environmentally-friendly materials.
Craig named the business after Uganda’s traditional classroom: the shade beneath a mango tree. In 2004, Mango Tree became an employee-owned, private limited company.

Looking ahead
Mango Tree plans to expand significantly in the coming years. This growth will make us a better partner for NGOs because we will have the resources to do jobs more efficiently. It will also provide long-term financial sustainability so we can grow our staff and attract more talented people to join us. Our mission will remain to empower Africa with the best educational tools possible. To accomplish this, we will:

  • Offer more services, including situational analyses and strategic designs, earlier in the communication process;
  • Expand our package of creative services so we can apply our knowledge and skills to more sectors; and
  • Make our services more widely available throughout East Africa.

Responsible Business

People are often surprised when they hear we are a company. For us, it makes perfect sense. There are many NGOs doing meaningful work in Uganda, but there are not enough socially responsible companies.

We believe the ultimate objective of development work is to create a society that does not need outside support. To reach this goal, Uganda needs a stable economy with a healthy private sector as its foundation.

Mango Tree is not just a company. We strive to be a role model for other companies by:

  • financial sustainability
  • efficient management that empowers employees
  • accountability to shareholders, employees and the government

While projects come and go, the experience incorporated in Mango Tree will stay, as we contribute to a new generation of Ugandans who are equipped to succeed as entrepreneurs.

Intellectual Property
Some might say we should simply reproduce and distribute educational materials for free. Mango Tree has another perspective on intellectual property. We believe in shaping a workforce that is analytical and creative. Ugandan society needs an industry of local writers, artists, publishers and printers who can invest in and improve their systems. Giving away their work for free takes away their livelihoods and reduces their incentive to innovate.

Working with Us

Whether you are applying for a full-time or freelance position, working with Mango Tree demands creativity. With clients across the health, agriculture and education sectors, each job has its unique challenges. Our highly-skilled staff of writers, artists and designers help you create an end product that you can be proud of.

We are always looking for new freelance talent. If you think you might be a good match for Mango Tree, please send your CV along with your portfolio or writing samples to Due to the volume of interested applicants, we can only contact those who are potential matches for the open positions.

Current Vacancies

Our Team
Guustaaf van de Mheen
Executive Director

Guustaaf came to Mango Tree through VSO as the Assistant Director of Business Operations. His background in project management for multinationals helped as he transitioned into the role of Executive Director in 2010.

Justin Silbaugh
Creative Director

Justin has been working in Uganda since 2006, serving as the director of two education-focused NGOs before joining Mango Tree in May of 2013. Justin has a Master of Education and was a secondary school teacher in the U.S.

Kansiime Monica
Design Manager

Monica started in 2003 as a graphic artist. She has since earned her degree in vocational training in art and design with a focus on education and honed her experience to manage the design department.

Stephen Wandera
Operations Manager

Stephen was our first graphic artist, making our original snakes and ladders games in 2000. After getting his degrees in education, he returned as a studio supervisor before progressing to Operations Manager.

Abdul Kagga
Human Resource Manager

Abdul has the longest tenure of any Mango Tree staff member, joining as the Sales Manager in 2001. Before that he was a secondary school teacher and cross-cultural trainer.

Angella Namaganda
Project Manager

In 2008 Angella joined us as a sales representative. Her degrees in marketing and mass communication helped her get the hang of what we do at Mango Tree and explain to clients what we could do for them.

Mwene Mathias
Communications and Training Consultant

Mathias came as a GOLD intern from Health Communication Partnership. An active writer and director in Ugandan theatre, he concentrates on theatre for development and children.

Nabakijje Goretti
Assistant Design Manager

Goretti joined us as a graphic artist making illustrations at the end of 2003 fresh from earning a BA in Industrial and Fine Art.

Reports & Downloads

Below is a list of downloadable PDFs about Mango Tree and our work. They are free for you to download and use as you wish.

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Copyright 2012 - Mango Tree | P.O.Box 25312, Kampala, Uganda | Plot 1479 Naalya Road, Kiwatule | Tel: +256 393 263 263

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