Dr. Marion Lees is a specialist in sport and development and peace and development. She is a co-founder and Chairperson of the Foundation for Sport, Development and Peace, a non-profit organisation. She is an associate professor and the director of the Interdisciplinary Centre for Sport Sciences and Development at the University of the Western Cape. She is an Advocate of the High Court of South Africa and certified in Mediation and Sports Law. Dr. Lees has been lecturing, conducting and supervising research in the areas of sport and social transformation, community and youth development, multiculturalism, conflict transformation and peacebuilding in Southern Africa, Europe, the Caribbean and the USA since 1989. She is a founding member and the Chairperson of the Western Cape Network for Community Peace and Development (a civil society network of 30 NGOs) from 2005- 2014.
Prof. Christo de Coning is a freelance academic, evaluation consultant and a development practitioner. He is both a Professor Extraordinaire at the School of Public Leadership, University of Stellenbosch and a senior researcher at the Faculty of Community and Health Sciences, University of the Western Cape. He has received the Tim Noakes Award for scientific research in sport and development. He is a Technical Advisor to National Treasury in South Africa on Monitoring and Evaluation of the IDIP Programme, related to infrastructure for health and education. He is a founding member and active volunteer for the Foundation for Sport, Development and Peace and has initiated and managed the Youth Peace and Heritage Game that has been included in the IOC Olympic Value Education Programme Manual and is a co-organizer of the annual Conference for Sport, Development and Peace in Cape Town.
Heidi Raymer’s broad career in Germany and Southern Africa has spanned across design, marketing, technology, architecture and social development. An entrepreneur by nature, she has owned a variety of businesses including a Health Club, and a Satellite TV Equipment Company. In 2000, she moved to South Africa and has since been involved in various developments including award-winning projects like the TygerValley Waterfront, the Willowbridge Lifestyle Precinct and the Stellendale Village in Cape Town. She is also involved in social upliftment initiatives, is a co-founder of EDuQ8 AFRICA, a Cape Town-based company established to tackle sub-Saharan Africa’s education crisis and founded the London based EDuQ8 INTERNATIONAL in order to attract leading educators to Africa.
Thandeka Tutu-Gxashe is the CEO of the Desmond Tutu Tutudesk Campaign and eldest daughter of Archbishop Desmond and Nomalizo Tutu. She was named one of the global 100 Real Leaders for 2018 by Real Leaders magazine. She is passionate about enhancing peace, racial reconciliation and equality by improving the health and educational experiences of young people, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. She is determined to preserve and enhance her parents’ legacy of global peace and justice and reconciliation. She is an accomplished public speaker and serves on several boards and trusts. She has been educated and lived in Swaziland, Lesotho, Botswana, South Africa, and the USA. She and her husband currently reside in Cape Town, South Africa.
Dr Desai serves as the Principal of Habibia Primary School and is a Policy Writer for the UNESCO Quality Physical Education Programme. He has a Masters of Public Administration and a PhD from the University of the Western Cape. He’s study area focuses on policy agenda-setting models for school sport and physical education in South Africa. His main objectives are on the use of methods to assess, monitor and evaluate projects in sport, development and peace for improved agenda-setting by focussing on the use of models within physical education and school sport and the policy agenda of the national South African government.
Dr. Msukwa focuses on social transformation processes, development research, project monitoring and evaluation, capacity building of development practitioners, conflict transformation, and the development of project concepts. He is a graduate of the University of the Western Cape where he obtained his PhD in Development Studies. His primary focus is in the designing of participatory extension approaches and tools, training of extension workers in participatory extension concepts and methodologies, developing concepts and providing capacity building on collaborative management of natural and human resources, in sport, development and peace – and beyond.
Ntombise Mene is a Deputy Director at the Department of Sport and Recreation South Africa who manages and directs a variety of programmes and projects, specifically focusing on women and girls, youth physical activity and overall health and wellness. For the Foundation, Ntombise serves as an advisor for our Sport and Recreation Programmes and coordinates networks at a National level in assisting the Foundation to reach specific sport and recreation objectives.
Warren Lucas is a PhD Medicine Candidate in Exercise Science at the University of Cape Town, a Scientist at the SA Medical Research Council and a Lecturer of Sport and Exercise Science at eta College. Warren was named one of South Africa’s Top 200 Young in 2019 and and has received a Chairperson’s Award from the Cape Town Sport Council for his role as President of the Cape Town Gymnastics Association. He serves as the Youth Coordinator for the Foundation for Sport, Development and Peace and heads up Youth Network for Sport Development and Peace which implements Youth initiatives with the endeavour of developing and mentoring youth sport leaders and African Youth Forum members. Warren’s research area includes gymnastics-related sport sciences and the design and implementation of patient-centred therapeutic exercise and sport interventions for young people with substance use disorders (SUDs) in treatment settings.
Dr Bella Bello Bitugu is an academic, consultant and expert for the UN, UEFA, FIFA, European Union, The Austrian Government, The Government of Ghana, many African and European countries.
He obtained his first degree in the University of Cape Coast and went on to Austria and studied for his Masters and PhD at the University of Innsbruck where he later lectured for 15 years. An expert in development through sport which uses the strength and power of sport to address development and other societal issues, he was until April 2012 the European coordinator of Sport for Development projects with FairPlay at the Vienna Institute for International Dialogue and Cooperation. More recently, Dr. Bitugu has been selected by UNESCO to be part of the experts to prepare a strategy for adoption by African sports ministers on implementing quality physical education and sports. He is a member of the group of experts appointed by the Commonwealth in London to steer a strategy for all Commonwealth Nations on how to use sports to achieve the United Nation’s sustainable development goals.