TEAM

FOUNDERS

KIM WORRALL: CO-FOUNDER, CEO & DRAMA TEACHER

Kim grew up in the United Kingdom, Netherlands and South Africa, and attained her London’s Trinity College L.T.C.L. in Speech & Drama at Cape Town’s Waterfront Theatre School. She has worked as an actress, voiceover artist, speech & effective communication coach, radio presenter, public event speaker and make-up artist, not to mention designing, manufacturing and retailing a leading South African baby brand. Kim is passionate about helping people, young and old, to develop new skills and self-confidence.

“There is nothing more rewarding than seeing a child’s eyes light up from deep within when complimented or made to feel welcome and wonderful. At Amoyo our absolute priority lies in making every child feel appreciated for being part of our foundation, each and every day. It all starts with the words, ‘Thank you for being here, we are so happy that you are choosing to spend time with us.’ It’s as simple as that. At first the children don’t understand, they look confused, and then, over time, we watch them start to blossom. They smile, stand straight and make genuine eye contact. This is their first new life skill, a skill that can potentially take them to places they don’t even have the capacity to dream about yet. It’s an absolute honour to be the CEO of Amoyo. Please enjoy our journey with us.”


NANDIPHA SANDLANA: CO-FOUNDER & DANCE TEACHER

As a young girl, Nandipha trained in Gugulethu under Philip Boyd, the founder and CEO of Dance For All. In due course he employed her as his assistant teacher, after which she took part in an extensive three-year training programme with Jazzart Dance Theatre. She went on to teach children in underprivileged communities, eventually coming to Hout Bay with the Jikeleza Dance Project that has evolved and blossomed into Amoyo.

“Amoyo means development for the children of Hout Bay, not only the development of performing artists through discovering young talent and honing it, but also being part of changing South Africa by creating better citizens. By simply keeping children off the street, we can help to prevent them getting involved in drugs, or falling pregnant too early, or succumbing to any other negative social activities. I am there for the children when they need me; a role model.”


MANDISA QWESHA: CO-FOUNDER & DANCE TEACHER

Originally from Khayelitsha, Mandisa moved to Hout Bay when she was nine years old and has been dancing since she was 17. She has a diploma from La Rosa Spanish Dance Theatre and worked at the Jikeleza Dance Project for five years before co-founding Amoyo.

“For me to be part of the Amoyo family means making a difference in every child’s life, making them feel that they really belong somewhere and have a place where they are safe. When I started, at age 17, I would have loved to have the kind of support and guidance that people like Nandipha and Kim offer the children of Amoyo. I truly believe that we are the difference. Not every child is doctor or lawyer material, and if we can help one child choose a career that they can be happy with and benefit from, then ‘touch down!’ is what I say.”

PATRON

LINDY KOKHUIS

Lindy is our CEO’s mum, but she is so much more than that. For many years, she and her late husband, Mike, ran Sorghvliet Lodge, a guesthouse in Hout Bay. ‘Sorgh’ means care and here they cared for one another, their guests, their animals, and their community. Through a previously existing dance organisation, they met teachers Nandipha Sandlana and Mandisa Qwesha. And the rest – as they say – is Amoyo history!

Says Lindy:

Our Amoyo children are becoming true diamonds of Hout Bay. Whether they are playing, practising, rehearsing or performing, they shine, they sparkle and they dedicate their energy to the best of their ability. Through self-awareness they learn to express themselves as their shyness dissolves and their self-confidence asserts itself. Learning the principles of respect for others gives them self-respect as they feel safe and appreciated for who they are.

Sharing and caring, having fun while working hard, and being grateful for every opportunity given – all of these make life’s challenges easier to meet. Amoyo’s STAFF aim to support one another from the ground up, learning the gifts and life values of one another and of each child as an individual living in a challenging environment. True dedication is of utmost importance in a child’s life. It gives stability and nurturing. Our staff set the example.

Amoyo believes in FAMILY and to this end we encourage contact with the families of the children, socially when and where possible, or at least by encouraging relatives to come along and watch practices or performances. Home visits are also arranged, should any problems arise, always putting the safety of the children first and foremost. We have attendance records which are followed up on if a child misses class and doesn’t provide a note.

A benevolent environment encourages trust, and TRUST is the backbone of Amoyo.

RESPECT – CONFIDENCE – INTEGRITY. These are the ingredients for a happy and successful child. Most important of all, however, life within Amoyo has to be FUN.

In short, we give our Amoyo children the tools to find their future as capable and confident adults in a challenging world.

As Patron, I am continually amazed and Proudly Amoyo!

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

In addition to our CEO, Kim, we are blessed with three directors who play an active role in fostering our vision, values and integrity.

NOMALUNGELO “MHINTI” PATO, COMMUNITY REPRESENTATIVE

Mhinti has worked as community development officer at Ikhaya le Themba since 2007, and she is busy completing her Degree in Community Development (Human Studies) through UNISA. Married with three children, her passion is education – and she loves theatre, having even completed a course in script writing!

“I love to see young people flourishing in all areas of their lives, which is why it is a great joy to be part of this wonderful organisation. The fact that children from disadvantage background are being nurtured in a safe place after school gives me hope for their future. I love the Amoyo team’s passion for children and the Hout Bay community.”

CREW

ERIKA MARAIS, DRAMA

Holding a BA Drama from the University of Pretoria, Erika is an actor, singer and voice artist with several short films, television commercials and theatre performances to her name. Her interests include creative movement, clowning, puppetry and mime – all making her a big hit with our children.


 

MBULELO NTLANGA, DRAMA & MUSICAL THEATRE

Actor/musician/TV presenter Mbulelo, a classically trained tenor with a B Drama degree from Stellenbosch University, has joined Amoyo to impart his love of musical theatre. “Acting/singing is my profession but, most importantly, it is my calling.”

BACKSTAGE

SEAN WILKINS: CFO

Sean is a chartered accountant with extensive experience across a wide variety of industries and corporate transaction types. After seven successful years as chief financial officer of the RACEC Group Limited (incorporated into Grindrod Rail Construction in 2013), he decided to utilise his experience for the benefit of several owner-managed entrepreneurial businesses and start-ups – and Amoyo.

“It is a privilege to be part of the Amoyo journey. Seeing the passion, dedication and commitment evolve from the whole Amoyo team through to the students and their families, and witnessing the impact Amoyo is having in the community, is life changing. This stuff matters!”


 

SUE HOWELL: FUNDRAISER

Sue has worked in the NGO arena for many years, covering women’s and human rights, ethical media and media access, women’s funds, youth development and elder abuse and rights. Skilled in monitoring, evaluation and NGO governance, her focus at Amoyo is to develop strategies for long-term sustainability and to build links for Amoyo to receive funding and donations.


 

JOANNE GIBSON: MEDIA & MARKETING MANAGER

Joanne is an award-winning journalist, specialising in wine, who moved to Hout Bay in 2015 and decided it was time to use her editorial skills, as well as her media contacts, to try and make a real difference in her community. Her main focus is to develop Amoyo’s media and marketing strategy; to tell our story and – most importantly – our children’s stories.


 

MARILYN NOBLE: OFFICE ADMINISTRATOR

A familiar face to many Hout Bayans, having previously worked at Wheelers Pharmacy, Marilyn danced for over a decade under Amoyo teachers/co-founders Mandisa Qwesha and Nandipha Sandlana – and she hopes to step in to teach our children herself from time to time. “When I dance, I don’t only dance with my body but also with my heart.”

VOLUNTEERS

DEBBIE NORDIEN

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SIPHELELE

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