Develop, Engage and Educate for the Future
To develop a practical, collaborative and supportive skills development approach that targets youth, young adults and women, enabling them to become contributors to a developing society.
Managing Director and Founder
Sebastian Gelderbloem was born in George and was faced with the harsh realities of apartheid at a very early age. He vowed that he would make a difference to ensure that young people can rise above the legacy of apartheid. He got involved in youth development during his student years as part of giving back to the communities he comes from. He has a degree in Biomedical Technology from Cape Peninsula University of Technology, a BPhil (Science and Technology) from the University of Stellenbosch and a MBA from the Australian Institute of Business. He has worked in Tuberculosis research internationally and led Aeras Global TB Vaccine Foundation, South Africa for several years. He has worked closely with multiple international nonprofits including with the Gates Foundation. He consults for Global Health Network, based at Oxford University, an online science park established to build clinical research capacity in Low to Medium Income Countries (LMIC) through knowledge sharing and making resources and tools available to developing scientists. He has worked closely with community organisations for several years to develop youth and young adults to become productive contributors to society. Being a cancer survivor he understands what it is to overcome life challenges. He firmly believes for Africa to prosper Africans must invest in Africa.
Dr René English is the Director of the Health Systems Research Unit at Health Systems Trust. She is a member of Task Teams and Committees at the National Department of Health. As well as holding honorary membership of the School of Public Health and Family Medicine at the University of Cape Town, is a member of the South African Colleges of Medicine, the Council of the College of Public Health Medicine, and was on the Advisory Board of the University of KwaZulu-Natal’s Centre for Rural Health. She is a Public Health Specialist and also holds a PhD from the University of Cape Town, and was recently a recipient of the Academy of Science Leadership Programme Fellowship from the University of Pretoria. She is an accomplished researcher and sees the value of investing in youth and young professionals. Education is of paramount importance to her and she firmly believes it is key to transforming society.
Winston Baatjies is a graduate of the University of the Western Cape, University of Pretoria and the World Bank Institute. Over and above that he has completed all the course work towards an MBA, from the University of Witwatersrand, with his research report to be completed. He has worked in the health, agriculture, forestry and fisheries as well as the small business development sectors. He has held various positions that included clinical, policy analysis, policy making and high level executive support responsibilities. Having grown up in a historically disadvantaged community has given him a particular passion for ensuring that the development agenda of South Africa irrespective of race and gender, is a vital key to unlocking the youth dividend and ensuring the transformation of the South/African society into a more equal society.
Dr. Cherise P. Scott is a global health specialist with over a decade of experience is developing and advancing innovations and products for neglected diseases. In particular, she has held various leadership roles in mostly public-private partnerships focusing in the areas of strategy and partnership development, regulatory and quality management, program management, and advocacy and communications. Dr. Scott's career has spanned from preclinical to market and she has worked with stakeholders and partners across 30 countries, specifically in resource-limited settings. Both professionally and personally, she has dedicated her life to working towards and scaling up solutions for impoverished communities. Cherise received her PhD in International Health with a focus on tuberculosis and vaccine development from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She has a Master of Public Health (MPH) degree and BS in Biology from Florida A & M University.
Ian Ryan has been involved in education for more than 28 years. He holds a Diploma in Education from Hewat Training College, a Higher Diploma in Education (HDE) in Mathematics and English and a Honours Degree in Education from CPUT with mayors in Educational Law, Policy Development and Financial Management. He started his career in Hanover Park where he taught Physical Education and Mathematics and then moved to Pinelands Primary as Head of Department before taking on a role as Deputy Principal at Pinelands North Primary where he continues to teach Mathematics and Natural Science to Grade 7s. In an acting principal position he refined his leadership skills and served on various educational bodies like National Union of Educators (NUE). In 2004 he was appointed Deputy Head of Wynberg Girls Junior and being at an all-girls school gave him tremendous insight into how different girls approach learning. In 2008 Ian was appointed Head of Sweet Valley Primary in Bergvliet. His tenor comes to an end in December 2018 when he once again makes a move to Head-up Rondebosch Boys Prep. He believes each child learns in a different way and at different rates and education must make room for that. Ian believes hard work and perseverance helps touch children’s lives and keeping the atmosphere positive is key to success as well keeping lines of communication open with staff, student and parents. Ian is a very visible Headmaster and ensures that there is opportunity to get to know students and for them to know him. His motto is “Stay positive, maintain communication, and do the right thing.”
Brian Keith Abdoll has been working for a large South African-based financial services organisation for the past 12 years. He gained widespread practical experience in manufacturing, agriculture, urban development, and finance services. He worked in various disciplines including accounting, finance, risk management, information technology, systems development and governance.
He was born on a farm outside George (Waboomskraal) and grew up in George. He is an alumnus of University of the Western Cape, Rhodes and University of Stellenbosch Business School (USB) – from which he holds an MBA. On a part-time basis he facilitates on the UWC post graduate and USB executive programmes.
He is the past chairperson of Rustenburg High School for Girls school governing body and serves on various USB structures. He enjoys solution discovery, is active in community development, and loves the mountains, beaches and wines of the Cape.
Brian is married to Crystal and they have two daughters.