My name is Thembisile Ndlovu, born and raised in Timbavati villiage, Mpumalanga. I finished my primary studies (grade 12) in 1993, and began my journey to becoming a nurse. I graduated with a degree in nursing in 1997. After seven years of practice, I decided to quit nursing in 2002 to pursue my true dream — to become a doctor. I went to Medunsa in Pretoria to study medicine, where I completed my studies in 2007 and started working as a Medical Doctor.
I was inspired by my late father to go to school and get educated. He always believed that education was the key to success, and he wanted all of us in the family to go to school so that we wouldn't suffer when he passed on. And it's true, today I can take care of my family because my parents were strict and believed strongly in education, and with my medical degree I can take care of others and my community.
The Ubuntu project is very important and it's very close to my heart. I wish Ubuntu Mundo existed when I was growing up. It provides much needed food and extra support to the kids after school. Some children don't have parents to assist them with schoolwork at home and some do not even have adequate food. Through the project they are able to get a balanced meal and also get educational support.
Today I practice medicine in my two private practices (one very close to the project), and I am a Medical Officer at the Tintswalo Hospital. It is with great happiness that I offer my time and skills to help advise Ubuntu Mundo as it works to improve the health, education, and futures of the children in my communities.
Ubuntu Mundo is very dear to my heart, the effectiveness of the project, the link to education and the focus to enable children to have a better start in life made me decide to give my support and advice.
As a Dutch citizen being born in Tunisia and with three young children who are Nigerian & Dutch, I have always been aware of the richness the world has to offer but also the responsibility we have and the inequalities that unfortunately exist.
I studied econometrics in Amsterdam and have an MBA from MIT Sloan School, in my professional career I invest and support companies who encounter challenges. Often the solution lies in motivating people by telling the story on why change or certain initiatives are needed. To help give strategic direction but also be there with the teams on the road in the execution. As my role as an advisor to Ubuntu Mundo I try to do the same.
This summer I visited one of the projects in South Africa with my children and it only confirmed what I already knew, our support is needed, it makes a real difference, and is delivered by the local teams with dedication, with a smile and with a true sense of humanity.
The Ubuntu Mundo model, I really do believe, can travel around the world to solve food insecurity for children and to make local communities strong, empowered and ultimately independent. That is what motivates me to give my professional support to Ubuntu Mundo and to bring this concept around the world.
After more than thirty years apart, I reconnected with my cousin Roel and his wonderful wife Cecilya. The last time I had seen Roel he was ready to leave for his first job in the US. He and I build our own lives. I as strategist in branding and communication. Roel as a financial specialist. In the time apart, Roel and Cecilya had changed their lives, dedicating themselves to feeding children in South Africa. From the moment our lives crossed again, I was immediately touched by their project Ubuntu Mundo. The kids. The smiles. The simple but very important concept of feeding children. And the passion of Roel and Cecilya to make the world a little bit better. But the most compelling aspect of the program for me is the self-sustaining emphasis, both environmentally and economically. I really believe this concept can help local communities grow and build their own futures. Not only for the lovely children, but for everyone in the community. I haven't yet had the opportunity to visit the project, but I can't wait to meet the happy children in South Africa.
With my years of experience in branding and communication, I want to help Ubuntu Mundo to strengthen communication with all stakeholders in order for Ubuntu Mundo to be able to expand its concept. I have a broad experience in strategy development for large and small brands, commercial, social and political. I have been the owner of one of the most successful advertising agencies in the Netherlands for 22 years (N=5). For the past two years I have been an independent consultant under the name of Eastwood, The art of positioning.
Kathy Treat is the president of the Speranza Foundation which she founded in 2008. Her philanthropic work supports artists and other changemakers who are engaged in restoring and inspiring humanity. Kathy is a member of World Vision's Strong Women Strong World Council, a group of women committed to ending extreme poverty by empowering women and girls. Other areas of interest include HIV/AIDS, clean water initiatives, and other equality projects. She lives in New York City.
As a first generation immigrant in the US, I have experienced first hand the dichotomy of living in both a developing and a first world country. One of the biggest things I recall about my childhood is an obsessive focus by my parents on nutrition. In China, we had limited access to quality foods and I remember waiting in ration lines with my mom to get small amounts of diluted milk to supplement my diet. It wasn’t until we had moved to the US that my development and nutrition stopped being a point of constant concern for my family. It’s because of these experiences that Ubuntu Mundo’s mission resonates so deeply with me.
Professionally, my background is in Computer Science and I’ve spent my career helping corporations improve their operational efficiency and scaling their impact through technology. I’m excited to apply my experiences and skills as an advisor to Ubuntu Mundo on its journey to building a better future for children everywhere.