We are committed to creating sustainable socio-economic change in Cape Town’s township communities.

By working hand-in-hand with community members, we seek to empower individuals and communities to become self-sufficient through the provision of training, support and resources.



In 1963, Helen Lieberman mobilised individuals to better their communities. Various initiatives were started, including centres for the disabled, and childcare and income generation projects to better the lives of the people living in those communities.


Community members start peer support groups. We open care centres and start working with seniors. The mamas of the community take orphaned children into their homes. We establish programmes for the blind and disabled and start to work with the youth of the communities.


We start informal schools in several townships in Cape Town. Our work starts to spread throughout South Africa, including Mossel Bay, George, Cradock in the Eastern Cape and Johannesburg. We also start cultivating our own food gardens, which to this day are still going strong.


In 1992, Ikamva Labantu is formally constituted. We build or upgrade over 100 pre-schools, and build our first seniors club, Noluthando 1, where the elderly can meet in a safe and secure environment. Our Rainbow Centre in Gugulethu is built. Today it houses a Senior Club, a pre-school and our Afterschool Programmes.

2000s +

We build two additional centres in Khayelitsha – our Early Childhood Development Centre and our Enkhululekweni Wellness Centre. We open our model pre-school, Kwakhanya, which is a practical training-ground for township practitioners and principals. We open the Ikamva Labantu Family Centre housed in our ECD centre.


Ikamva Labantu was built by a group of determined women who envisioned a better future for South Africa.


Our team is over 130 strong, of which at least 100 live in the communities we serve.


Evansa Roos
Finance Manager

Barbara Stemmert
Programme Director

Jovana Djeri
Head of Sustainable Development

Isaac Petersen
Operations and Facilities Manager

Programme team

Mildred Bopoto
Head of Early Childhood Development

Bulelwa Ndibongo
Head of Community Relations

Lulama Sigasana
Head of Seniors

Lizette Oliver
Head of Health Services

Nyasha Manjengenja
Head of Psychosocial Support Services

Mthunzi Funo
Head of Recreation and Life Skills

Board of trustees

Neetesh Ramjee

Helen Lieberman
Founder and Honorary President

Ilana Shone

Avin Lieberman

Board of protectors

Gaynor Rupert (Chairperson)

Director and owner of the Drakenstein Stud; Chairperson of the South African College for Tourism and initiator of the Tracker Academy (Peace Parks); Founding and Executive Trustee of the Imibala Trust, and Board Member of the Rupert Family Foundations.

“Over my 20-year association with the board, I have been moved to see the way in which Ikamva Labantu works with township communities to empower them to uphold the cause of the weak and needy, defend the fatherless and provide refuge for the elderly. It has been a great privilege to join hands with the Ikamva Labantu family and participate in the realisation of such a grand vision.”

Philip J Krawitz

Executive Chairman, Cape Union Mart Group

“Ikamva Labantu is an organisation which focuses on ‘hand-ups’ rather than ‘hand-outs’. Its culture is one of inter-dependency rather than dependency. I consider it a privilege to be able to help people help themselves in order to live the dream of our Rainbow Nation.”

Maria Ramos

Chief Executive Officer, Barclays Africa Group Limited

“Ikamva Labantu does inspirational work, touching the lives of the most vulnerable people in our society, and living up to its vision of ‘every human being has the right to a dignified life’. I am proud to be associated with an initiative that enables communities to be self-reliant by providing them with hope, information, support and resources.”