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By: Kate Groch

As we find our way through the uncertain times brought on by the coronavirus, we are thankful that we have an opportunity to focus on building a leadership team that will help GWF emerge stronger as we move into 2021.

In 2017 our first GWF Executive Committee (Exco) was formed with the focus to strengthen strategy, structure and systems. Based on the foundation of our moral compass, the process has supported the development of the Hazyview Cluster of Digital Learning Campuses, as well as the evolution of our Career-Training Academies. We have worked extensively on our strategic visioning process (with the help of Root Inc.), including operational roadmaps and accountability structures to support this.

I would like to take a moment to acknowledge our former Head of Programmes & Campus Operations, Maria-Goretti Awogu for her incredible contribution to our first GWF Exco. Our progress in the last three years has been all the stronger for Maria’s strategic input (with heart). In May this year, Maria moved on to her next adventure and wish her the very best. I would also like to thank the incredible Zola Myakayaka who have moved on to her next “calling” too.

Exco Structure 2019

Our second GWF Exco has been formed to take GWF and its 130 team members into the next three years. Based on the strong foundation of strategy and structure, we now look to further strengthen our team (and its skills) and provide them with systems that will support better impact and better implementation (and organisation) of our vision and mission. We will also be ramping up our focus on innovative funding partnerships, including new opportunities with our social enterprise, VillageUp.

To support this second phase of focus and its operational roadmaps, here are some updates that I am excited to share:

Our IT Academy Programme Manager, Eric Zwane, has been “on loan” to us by our partner, T-Systems, for the last 12 months. As of July 1st, Eric joins the team full-time. He will also fulfil the role of Head of IT and in that capacity will join the Executive Committee.

As mentioned, Maria-Goretti Awogu, our Head of Programmes & Campus Operations, left GWF in April, as did Zola Myakyaka, our Hazyview Cluster Operations Manager. Musa Mokoena is the Acting Hazyview Cluster Operations Manager and will be invited to serve on the Executive Committee in the interim.

Ryan James is moving on from his full-time role as Head of Development and will become a consultant in the role of Special Projects Lead. This includes: (1) Oversight of our Strategic Process; (2) Monitoring, Evaluation & Learning (MEL); (3) Internal Communications; & (4) Special Publications. Ryan will continue to serve on the Executive Committee and will support the Development Team as part of a thorough handover process.

Gemma Thompson has been promoted to the new Head of Development with immediate effect, and will be responsible for Fundraising, Marketing, Strategic Partnerships and our new CRM project (in collaboration with our partners at Rhino Africa). As mentioned, Gemma will have the support of Ryan, Nadia and myself as she transitions into this new role.

Exco Structure 2020

I am very proud to guide GWF’s team so that we can emerge stronger as we come out of the other side of the coronavirus pandemic. I welcome all of our new team members as well as the new Executive Committee.

I am sincerely grateful for the entire GWF team who continue to make a huge impact in the communities where we serve.

With love

Kate (CEO)

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