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Our Team



Dr. Mitch Besser – Interim Chair, m2m SA, Founder, m2m

An obstetrician and gynaecologist, Mitch’s career has been dedicated to the public health needs of women. In 1999, he joined the University of Cape Town, assisting with the development of services for HIV-positive pregnant women to prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV (PMTCT). It was through that work he recognised a need for an education and psychosocial support programme that would help PMTCT services achieve the best medical and social outcomes, founding m2m in 2001. Among the many awards Mitch has received are the Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship and the Presidential Citizen’s Award.

Colin Freund – Chair, m2m U.S.

Colin has over 20 years’ experience in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries, with a primary focus in oncology. Prior to being appointed CEO of MODRA Pharmaceuticals, which specialises in oral chemotherapy, Colin was CEO of QUE Oncology, Inc., a company focused on cancer-related therapies. Colin also held senior business and corporate development roles at Transgene SA, Agennix Inc., and GPC Biotech AG, all of which were involved with developing novel oncology therapeutics. Earlier in his career, Colin was a project manager at the Boston Consulting Group in the healthcare and high technology practice areas.

Carl Stewart – Chair, m2m U.K.

A finance industry professional, Carl is currently the Global Head of Hedge Funds Coverage at HSBC in London. Previously, he served as Chief Operating Officer of the European Business of Och-Ziff Management Europe Limited, a U.S.-based asset management firm. He also held the senior leadership positions at K2 Advisors Limited and Zurich Capital Markets’ business in Europe and Asia. For the first 14 years of his career, Carl worked at JP Morgan in a variety of roles in investment banking and capital markets.

Laura Bartlett – Vice Chair, m2m U.S.

Laura is the retired CFO/COO of the American Association of Advertising Agencies, the nonprofit trade association for the US Advertising industry. She joined the 4A’s in 2008 from the global advertising network FCB, where she served as CFO for the New York office and later CFO of FCB Worldwide. During her 14 year tenure, Laura was involved in international acquisitions and overseas operations. Earlier, she spent 14 years in financial management at Johnson & Johnson. Laura is also a board director for the nonprofit Gilda’s Club NYC that provides free, comprehensive cancer support. She earned a BS in Accounting from Drexel University and an MBA from Fairleigh Dickinson.

Carolina Manhusen Schwab – Vice Chair, m2m U.K.

Carolina is an economist with experience in both the for-profit and not-for-profit sectors. She began her career at the Inter-American Development Bank, working on women’s development and microenterprise projects. She later joined Merrill Lynch Investment Banking where she was involved in Mergers & Acquisitions in the energy and power sectors. She also founded two businesses — a search firm and a social enterprise clothing line that employed vulnerable women in Argentina — and has volunteered with numerous organisations in Europe and South America. Of Swedish and Argentinian descent, Carolina speaks five languages and has two Masters degrees in Economics and in Development Studies.


The Reverend Canon Chris Ahrends – Anglican Church of Southern Africa

Chris is the Canon Missioner of the Diocese of Saldanha Bay, one of the Anglican Dioceses of the Anglican Church of Southern Africa. He also runs a small consulting practice, Four Consulting, and is a Director of The U2U Foundation, a registered nonprofit organisation which offers a range of transformative courses, workshops, and retreats. Formerly, he served as Executive Director of the Desmond Tutu Peace Centre in Cape Town, South Africa and, prior to that, he was Sub Dean at St. George’s Cathedral and Chaplain to Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

Neal Baer, M.D. – Executive Producer

Neal is an award-winning television writer, paediatrician, and public health advocate and expert. He has served as the showrunner for the past twenty years on Designated Survivor, Under the Dome, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, and ER. A graduate of Harvard Medical School, Neal has been recognised for his efforts to increase understanding of medicine in the media. His numerous academic affiliations include the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, Harvard Medical School, and USC’s Annenberg School. He co-established the Institute for Photographic Empowerment at USC, building on his work in South Africa and Mozambique teaching filmmaking and photography to mothers living with HIV and to orphans whose parents died of AIDS, empowering them to show the world through the lens of their own lives.

Leslie Brunner – Chief People Officer, Devoted Health

Leslie is the Chief People Officer at Devoted Health, a new Medicare Advantage health plan that is redefining the way care is delivered, paid for and experienced. Prior to joining Devoted, Leslie served as the President of MiniLuxe, a company transforming nail care by integrating technology, data analytics and career pathing, while offering an elevated client experience. Before that Leslie was on the founding team of the healthcare technology company, athenahealth, serving in a variety of senior leadership roles. She obtained a BA from Colorado College and a Master’s Degree in Health Administration from Washington University.

Lynne Cornelissen – Medical Officer/Sub-Investigator, Stellenbosch University’s Family Clinical Research Unit

Lynne serves as a Medical Officer/Sub-Investigator at Stellenbosch University’s Family Clinical Research Unit (FAMCRU) based at Tygerberg Hospital, where she currently studies HIV and TB in pregnancy and cardiovascular prevention strategies in HIV. Prior to joining FAMCRU, Lynne spent five years at Khayelitsha District Hospital managing complex HIV and TB patients. A Cape Town native who is passionate about HIV medicine, Lynne received her medical degree from Stellenbosch University and a diploma in HIV management with distinction from the College of Medicine.

Kerry Evans – General Manager, ELEMIS

Kerry is a curious and experienced Brand General Manager, skilled at developing strategy with a proven delivery record in capability building to realise business goals. Prior to becoming General Manager of the quintessentially British skincare brand ELEMIS for the U.K. and Republic of Ireland, Kerry successfully led new market expansion for Jo Malone London into South Africa and launched Estee Lauder and Tom Ford Cosmetics into sub-Sahara Africa. She also initiated and executed significant organisational design and transformation programmes to drive MAC Cosmetics in the U.K. and Republic of Ireland.  Kerry is a strong advocate of ethical continuous business and people up skilling. She worked most recently in the area of Diversity and Inclusion, Corporate Citizenship, and Sustainability for Estee Lauder Companies, UK and Republic of Ireland.

Dr. Tim Evans – Medical Director

As Medical Director of a private medical and wellbeing clinic in London, Tim is guided by his belief that “prevention is the medicine of the millennium.” Early in his career, he established primary health clinics in rural areas of Zimbabwe recovering from civil war. After acquiring post-graduate qualifications in general practice, anaesthetics, obstetrics, and gynaecology, he established a private general practice for women and children in London, followed by the first fully integrated practice incorporating conventional, complementary, and alternative healthcare. He was appointed as Apothecary to HM The Queen and The Royal Households of London in 2003.

Colleen Hancock – Advisor and Mentor

Colleen is an accomplished General Manager/COO/Corporate VP and a Collaborative and Innovative Leader. She has 20 years global consumer internet/technology experience with BabyCenter and J&J, and 15 prior years in global retail strategy with Neiman Marcus and Duty Free Shoppers (DFS). She has a history of success in the consumer services industry on and offline, with a track record of delivering results for the business and understanding how to evolve with ever changing technology and generational needs. Colleen recently left her roles as COO BabyCenter and VP Marketing Accelerator at J&J to pursue new personal and professional growth opportunities. She also serves on the board of Azlo, a financial technology company, and advises MAMA (Mobile Alliance for Maternal Action),which she co-founded.

Marigo Kehoe – Executive Producer

Marigo currently serves as the Executive Producer of The Wheel of Time, Amazon Studios’ highly anticipated epic fantasy series. Previously she was Co-founder and Managing Director of Left Bank Pictures, one of the most successful drama production companies in the U.K. Under her auspices, Left Bank produced the awardwinning series The Crown for Netflix, and other multiple-award-winning drama and comedy series for HBO, BBC, ITV1, Channel 4, E4, Sky, Starz, and Amazon. Marigo was also Head of Production for Drama, Comedy, and Film at Granada, overseeing production of the Oscar and BAFTA award-winning film The Queen and many other award-winning series and films. She has over 30 years of experience in film and television production and received the Women in Film and Television Business Award in 2015.

Ariel Knowles – Finance Professional & Consultant

Ariel has spent her career working in finance roles in the U.S., Hong Kong, and London. Most recently, she was Senior Finance Manager for Interior Define, a Chicago-based omni-channel home furnishings retailer. Prior roles include Investment Banker within UBS Investment Bank’s Industrials and Consumer Products & Retail groups in Chicago and London, respectively, and Supervisory Analyst with Sanford C. Bernstein in Hong Kong. Ariel is involved in various other philanthropic causes and educational initiatives and institutions, including the Chicago Children’s Theatre, Chicago’s Field Museum, and Western Reserve Academy.

Derek Lubner – Philanthropist

Derek is the Marketing Director at Innovate Services Ltd, a school caterer operating in fifty schools and colleges in the U.K. He has deep roots in South Africa, having gone to school in Johannesburg and served as a partner of All Brand No Flakes, a marketing and branding company based in Cape Town. In addition to his longstanding commitment to m2m, he serves on the boards of the Community Chest and the South African National Youth Orchestra, and runs his parents’ foundation, MAID (Make an Immediate Difference).

Nicolás Martin – Partner, Herbert Smith Freehills

A recognised M&A and private equity lawyer, Nicolás is a partner of the international law firm Herbert Smith Freehills (HSF) where he is a member of its Global Council. He has close to 30 years of experience advising on international transactions for a broad range of clients including funds, banks, and corporates. Before joining HSF, Nicolás was a partner at Linklaters and KPMG.

Daphne Metland – Director, Thrive

Daphne runs Thrive: words that change lives, a multi award-winning, international health editorial agency that supplies tailor-made health content using behaviour change principles. She has developed behaviour change health messaging programmes delivered by mobile phone for projects in China, India, South Africa, Bangladesh, Mexico, and Uganda that reach over 8 million people, as well as for the Mobile Alliance for Maternal Action (MAMA) reaching 3.2 million people and the National Department of Health in South Africa. She also serves as Editorial Director, International, Maternal and Child Health for the pregnancy and parenting digital resource, BabyCenter. Daphne is a member of the Royal Society of Medicine, the Association of Medical Journalists, and the Guild of Health Writers.

Herschelle Milford – Organisational Development Consultant

Born and raised in a copper mining town in Namaqualand, South Africa, Herschelle is passionate about social justice and the power and strength of people to facilitate social change. She has experience of the challenges and strengths of partnerships and collaborations. After serving 18 years as the CEO of a non-profit, Surplus People Project, Herschelle stepped down in 2017 to explore new opportunities such as mentoring youth, accompanying community based organisations and platforms for sharing experience and knowledge. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree and a Higher Diploma in Education from the University of the Western Cape. She serves on several NGO boards and volunteers at a variety of institutions.

Terry D. Peigh – Senior Vice President, Managing Director, Interpublic Group (IPG)

Terry serves as a senior corporate executive overseeing the relationship with some of the largest clients at IPG, a global leader in modern marketing solutions. Prior to joining IPG, Terry held senior leadership positions at global advertising networks Foote Cone and Belding (FCB) Worldwide and True North Communications. Employing his international and marketing background, Terry devotes some of his outside time to various NGOs working in international social development, including advising on how best to use modern-day marketing principles to advance the acceptance of health practices in the developing world.

Meena Ravella – Advisor & Consultant

Meena has over 20 years of experience in the consumer internet, and currently advises several Silicon Valley companies. Meena most recently was the Vice President of Business Development for Shutterfly, whose mission is to help the world share life’s joy by helping people share their memories.

Prior to Shutterfly, Meena headed up marketing partnerships for eBay, with a focus on the largest consumer websites, electronics manufacturers, and wireless carriers. Prior to eBay, Meena worked at NBC Internet, Boston Consulting Group and JP Morgan Chase.

Mojisola Rotibi - Consultant

Moji has more than 20 years of experience in the financial services industry, including positions at Investec Bank Ltd., Commerzbank AG, and as the chief executive of Ascent Asset Managers. As Co-founder and Managing Partner at Biovest LLC, she brought a class III medical device to trial in South Africa for kidney transplants involving HIV. Moji believes that we all must strive to be humanitarians without prejudices since we are all equally vulnerable to the vagaries of life, including diseases.

Kate Schachern – Partner, Rabin Martin

Kate Schachern is Managing Director of Rabin Martin, a global health strategy firm based in New York, overseeing large-scale, global health and health access projects around the world. Kate works closely with the private and public sectors on effective strategy, programming, partnerships and communications in a number of key areas, including access to medicines, corporate responsibility, public affairs and policy, and stakeholder engagement. As Managing Director, she also leads firm business development, Finance, Operations, Marketing & Communications. She holds a BA in Journalism from the George Washington University.

Boitumelo Semete-Makokotlela, PhD, MMFI – CEO, South African Health Products Regulatory Authority

Boitumelo is CEO of the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) and a fellow of the African Leadership Initiative. Prior to joining SAHPRA, she managed a biotechnology incubator at The Innovation Hub Management Company. She was also a McKinsey & Company Leadership Fellow for two years and a Senior Researcher at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). Boitumelo holds a Ph.D. (Biochemistry) and an MSc in Management Finance and Investment, and is the author of scientific publications, review articles, and book chapters. She sits on a number of scientific advisory committees and Board of Directors, and is involved in leadership projects, including the African Union Strategy for Health Research and a WHO Expert Panel on scaling health Innovations in Africa.

Non-voting Members

Frank Beadle de Palomo – President & Chief Executive Officer

Frank has over 26 years experience in the global health community that includes significant achievements in HIV prevention, domestic and global care, research, and advocacy. Before joining m2m as CEO in 2012, Frank was Senior Vice President and Director of the Global Health, Population, and Nutrition Group at FHI 360. Previously, Frank was Senior Vice President and Director of the Academy for Educational Development (AED), where he re-established the organisation as a leader in global AIDS programmes. He also created and directed the National Council of La Raza ‘s Center for Health Promotion in the U.S.

Robin Smalley

Robin Allinson Smalley – Co-founder and Director, m2m U.S.

Robin enjoyed an award-winning career as a television producer/director/writer before realising that the legacy she wanted to leave had nothing to do with entertainment. Turning her attention to the nonprofit world, she became the Executive Director of The Media Project, working to incorporate healthy messages around sexuality and reproductive health into television. From there, she moved her family to South Africa, to become m2m’s first Executive Director. Now back in the U.S., she is responsible for U.S. fundraising, partnership development, advocacy, and global communications.

Officers of the Corporation

Chad D. Rathner – Secretary, m2m South Africa, Chief Operating Officer, m2m

Chad brings more than 18 years’ experience in the global health community and private sector. Before joining m2m as COO in 2014, Chad was the Deputy Country Director at FHI 360 Zambia as well as Chief of Party on USAID’s flagship HIV and AIDS Prevention programme in Zambia. In addition, from 2007-2010 Chad was the Academy for Educational Development (AED) Director of the Local Partners Capacity Building Program, a USAID funded Organization Development project. Chad’s new position with m2m utilises his expertise in developing solutions for a wide range of HIV and AIDS, family planning, maternal and child health, education, public/private partnership, and capacity building programmes.

Sarah Sheldon – Secretary, m2m US, Senior Grants and Compliance Manager, m2m

Sarah is a programme and grants management professional with over 13 years of experience in international health and development. Currently, she serves as the Senior Grants and Compliance Manager for m2m based in Cape Town. She is responsible for ensuring compliance with the requirements of m2m’s donor and funder agreements and building the capacity of project management teams around compliance. She also plays a major role in organisational policy development and managing the governance of m2m’s local branches. Sarah previously worked with FHI 360, including as Regional Grants and Contracts Officer for West Africa based in Accra, Ghana from 2015 to 2017.

Senior Management Team

Frank Beadle de Palomo – President & Chief Executive Officer

Frank has over 26 years experience in the global health community that includes significant achievements in HIV prevention, domestic and global care, research, and advocacy. Before joining m2m as CEO in 2012, Frank was Senior Vice President and Director of the Global Health, Population, and Nutrition Group at FHI 360. Previously, Frank was Senior Vice President and Director of the Academy for Educational Development (AED), where he re-established the organisation as a leader in global AIDS programmes. He also created and directed the National Council of La Raza ‘s Center for Health Promotion in the U.S.

Meet Frank

Chad D. Rathner – Secretary, m2m South Africa, Chief Operating Officer, m2m

Chad brings more than 18 years’ experience in the global health community and private sector. Before joining m2m as COO in 2014, Chad was the Deputy Country Director at FHI 360 Zambia as well as Chief of Party on USAID’s flagship HIV and AIDS Prevention programme in Zambia. In addition, from 2007-2010 Chad was the Academy for Educational Development (AED) Director of the Local Partners Capacity Building Program, a USAID funded Organization Development project. Chad’s new position with m2m utilises his expertise in developing solutions for a wide range of HIV and AIDS, family planning, maternal and child health, education, public/private partnership, and capacity building programmes.

Meet Chad

Delia Burnett, MPH – Acting North American Director

Delia spent her early career providing direct patient care to vulnerable populations in both the US and Ethiopia with Planned Parenthood, New York Legal Assistance Group, Worldwide Orphans Foundation, and Mount Sinai’s Human Rights Program. She has her Masters in Public Health from Mount Sinai School of Medicine with a focus in Global Health. In 2014, Delia shifted her focus to partnerships and development at Last Mile Health and most recently, UNICEF USA. Currently, Delia leads m2m’s North American resource mobilisation strategy, evolving strategic partnerships to drive philanthropy and elevate m2m’s profile in North America.

La Chenna Cromer – Director, Business Development

La Chenna brings 20 years of experience in public health and business development in the United States, African, and Asian development markets. She comes to m2m from FHI 360 where she served as the Associate Director for the East and Southern Africa portfolio. During her tenure at FHI 360, La Chenna brought in more than $900,000,000 from U.S. and EU governments, pharmaceutical corporations, and private foundations. Prior to FHI 360, she focused on health communication research to inform campaigns for underserved populations. La Chenna uses her passion for women’s rights, empowerment, and improved access to health care to expand m2m’s global footprint through restricted and unrestricted funding.

Emma France – Global Development and Strategic Engagement Director

Emma established the European office of m2m in 2011. In her current role, she leads m2m’s global development and strategic engagement strategy, and takes responsibility for shaping our public engagement and advocacy. She holds day-to-day responsibility for m2m’s European and North American operations.  Emma began her career as a project finance lawyer at Allen & Overy. She has served in various board roles in national and local charities, including as Vice-Chair of Amnesty International U.K. and as a trustee of the Amnesty International U.K. Charitable Trust.  She currently sits on the Advisory Board for Gucci’s Chime for Change and is a Trustee for CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably). She has also served as a Visiting Fellow at Cass Business School. 

Dillon Mann – Global Communications Director

Dillon is a communications professional with experience across the not-for-profit, technology, policy and professional services sectors. Prior to joining m2m, he was Communications & Campaigns Director at the World Wide Web Foundation, an organisation that ensures everyone, everywhere can get online and use the web to improve their lives. Leading a global communications team from Cape Town, he helped the organisation to triple in both size and impact. Prior to this, he served as a director at a leading U.K. communications consultancy, working with diverse clients ranging from government departments to law firms.  At m2m, Dillon is responsible for the development, integration, and implementation of m2m’s global communications strategy across three continents.

Gillian Mthandi – Human Resources Director

Gillian Mthandi is an HR generalist with 16 years of experience in human resource management. She spent 10 years of her career working as an HR Manager for various corporations in South Africa. Six years ago she made the decision to move into the nonprofit sector, joining m2m. Her first role within m2m was to give strategic HR support to the field operations in Southern Africa. She was later promoted to HR Director where she leads the global HR strategy for the organisation.

Meet Gillian

Dr. Kathrin Schmitz – Director, Programmes and Technical Support

A Medical Doctor with an MBA, Kathrin has extensive clinical, research, and technical expertise in programme design and implementation. Early in her career, she specialised in paediatric clinical practice and research, and oversaw the accreditation of informal Early Childhood Development (ECD) centres across South Africa. Since joining m2m in 2005, Kathrin has played a leading role in the organisation’s programmatic and geographical expansion. In her current role, she leads programme innovation aligned with organisational strategic objectives, and drives the conceptualisation and design, implementation and scale-up of m2m’s rapidly expanding portfolio of programmes, while overseeing technical quality.

Meet Kathrin

Country Leadership

Priscilla Banda – Country Director, Zambia

For the past three years, Priscilla has served as our Country Representative, focused on resource mobilisation for the Zambia programme and oversight of our USAID SAFE start up and implementation. In addition to her work with m2m, Priscilla brings a wealth of experience to this role – she has been working for U.S. Government-funded programmes for over 22 years in Zambia’s health sector. Before becoming a Country Representative for m2m Zambia, she served as Country Director for number of organisations, including the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric Aids Foundation (EGPAF) and National Alliance for State and Territorial Aids Directors (NASTAD). We’re pleased to have Priscilla in her new role and providing direction to sustain and grow the Zambia program.

Chileshe Chilangwa – Country Director, Malawi

Chileshe has over 22 years of experience in managing public health and development programmes. Most recently as the Deputy Country Director for FHI 360 Zambia, she provided leadership and management to the portfolio of HIV/AIDS, water and sanitation, and nutrition projects, overseeing the programmatic, technical, finance, compliance, and human resources functions of the office and developing the country strategy with the Country Director. She also served as the Chief of Party for USAID’s $36 million flagship national prevention project, the Zambia-led Prevention Initiative. Prior to this, Chileshe founded and spent 14 years as the Executive Director for Hodi, a national organisation created to empower rural communities.

Frida Kabaso – Country Director, Lesotho

Frida has more than 15 years experience in HIV coordinated response and development work. Before joining m2m as Senior Technical Advisor, Frida was the Country Director for both ActionAid Lesotho and Voluntary Services Overseas. Earlier in her career, she was Orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVC) Programme Manager with VSO Zambia, where she was involved with the response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Southern Africa. As m2m Country Director, Frida leads the strengthening of community mobilisation and demand creation for uptake of PMTCT services. She also provides leadership on creating synergy between health facilities and communities in the HIV and AIDS coordinated response, and ensures collaboration with the Ministry of Health and other stakeholders and AIDS development partners.

Ilda Kuleba – Country Director, Mozambique

Ilda has over 10 years’ experience working in public health and joined m2m from PSI Mozambique where she served as Director of Programmes, implementing a family planning project spanning six provinces. Previously Ilda worked with PSI in Angola as a Chief of Party for an HIV key populations project. She also has experience working for USAID and in the private sector. Ilda holds a Bachelor’s degree from American University in Washington, D.C., and a Master’s degree from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. In her role as Country Director for m2m in Mozambique, Ilda is responsible for the implementation and strategic leadership of the programme in the country, while ensuring alignment and integration with Ministry of Health plans.

Dr. Betty Mirembe – Country Director, Uganda

Betty is a medical doctor with postgraduate training in public health. She has 15 years of medical field experience, 12 of which have been in the implementation of diverse programmes in Uganda, including HIV/AIDS care and treatment. Prior to joining m2m, Betty served as the eMTCT/Paediatric HIV Programme Manager at the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI), where she provided technical assistance to Uganda’s national ministry of Health in the design and strategic implementation of PMTCT, early infant diagnosis (EID), paediatric HIV testing, care and treatment programmes as well as paediatric TB programmes, across all sites in the country. Before CHAI, Betty was a Technical Advisor for PMTCT at the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundations (EGPAF), and a Coordinator of Studies and Programmes, respectively, implemented by the Makerere University-John Hopkins University Collaboration and the UN World Food Programme.

Charles Muruka – Programme Specialist, Kenya

Charles is a career public health specialist who joined m2m Kenya in September 2013. His first role at m2m was as the Kenya Mentor Mother Program (KMMP) Manager. In that role, Charles acted as the liaison between m2m and Kenya’s Ministry of Health on the integration of m2m’s Mentor Mother Model into the national health system. In his current position as Programme Specialist, his responsibilities include overseeing m2m Kenya’s operations and project implementation while acting as the focal person with partners, funders, and other stakeholders in the country. Prior to joining m2m Kenya, Charles worked with Save the Children International for its health and nutrition programme in Kenya.

Yvonne Prempeh-Ferguson – Technical Specialist, Ghana

Yvonne is a development practitioner with more than 20 years of direct implementation and management experience of varied health sector portfolios. She has also led multi-sector projects in education, child protection, youth empowerment, and livelihoods. Through her work in multiple countries, Yvonne has gained significant cross-cultural experience and has built strategic relationships with UN and international agencies, national and local governments, and community-based organisations. She earned an MPhil in Economics and Politics in Development from Cambridge University (U.K.) and an MA in Development Economics from Dalhousie University (Canada). Yvonne describes herself as a passionate advocate for children’s rights and for improving the lives and well-being of vulnerable women.


Teddy Atim – Namayingo District, Uganda

Teddy learned she was living with HIV when she was 20 years old and expecting her first child. The devastating news strained her relationship with her husband, who tested HIV-negative. Fortunately, m2m Mentor Mothers at her clinic educated Teddy and her husband about staying healthy as a discordant couple and protecting their baby from infection. After seeing that it is possible to break the cycle of HIV infection, Teddy decided she wanted to become a Mentor Mother. She is happily married and now has three children who are all HIV-free. She is proud to be a driver of change in her community and earn a living so her family can have a bright future.

Meet Teddy

Josophine Kalombola – Malawi

Adolescent Mentor Mother, Lilongwe District

Growing up in her community in Lilongwe, Josophine always felt different. Unlike her siblings, she had to take pills every day. Not knowing why, Josophine often hid them or threw them away. In 2020, Josophine became sick—she went to the clinic, and a nurse referred her to mothers2mothers (m2m). With the support of her Mentor Mother, Thoko, Josophine learned she had been born with HIV. Thoko helped her accept the news by introducing her to other young people like her at an m2m support group. Today, Josophine works for m2m as a Peer Mentor for adolescents. She is now the person giving hope to girls in her community—talking to them about the importance of understanding their status, ensuring they have access to sexual and reproductive health information, and serving as a role model for those who are fearful of the future or who are also living with HIV.

Meet Josophine

Makeletso Khomonngoe – Lesotho

HIV Testing Services Mentor, Mohale’s Hoek District

Lesotho, where Makeletso lives, is a beautiful mountainous country—but people face many challenges accessing healthcare, and too many young people do not have access to sexual and reproductive health services and education. Makeletso was only 18 when she found out she was living with HIV as part of a routine HIV test during her pregnancy. Makeletso is fortunate to have a supportive family, and she adhered to her treatment and delivered an HIV-free baby. When Makeletso saw that mothers2mothers (m2m) was recruiting women living with HIV to become Mentor Mothers, she knew she wanted to become part of the change her community needed. Today, Makeletso is an HIV Testing Services Mentor Mother—providing HIV and Syphillis counselling and testing services in her community, working alongside m2m Nurses. In this way, Makeletso is key to ensuring that no one in Lesotho is left behind—bringing lifesaving health care services directly to those most in need.

Meet Makeletso

Millicent Magwa – South Africa

Community Mentor Mother Coordinator, Western Cape

Diagnosed with HIV at the height of the pandemic in South Africa in 2002, Millicent relied on a television programme that aired once a week to access information about how to live a healthy and positive life. At the time, HIV treatment was very expensive; most people could not afford it and many died from AIDS-related illnesses. Now, 17 years later, Millicent is working as a Community Coordinator for mothers2mothers and is dedicating her life to providing the health education and services she wished she had access to when she first tested positive. Based at m2m’s Innovation Hub in Cape Town, Millicent and her team are delivering integrated primary health care services that go well beyond HIV.  She is now actively screening clients and their families for non-communicable diseases such as diabetes and hypertension. With her kit bag, Millicent conducts blood pressure and blood glucose checks and links clients to health services at the nearby Ikhwezi Community Clinic. She monitors progress, encourages her clients to adhere to treatment, and offers lifestyle education and advice to help them better manage their health and well-being.

Meet Millicent

Esther Mamba – South Africa

CHAMP Programme Linkage Assistant, Mpumalanga 

Esther met mothers2mothers (m2m) after she was diagnosed with HIV during her first pregnancy. She was fearful for the future, but fortunately, her Mentor Mother, Colile, reminded her that ‘there is life after HIV.’ Through the support she received from Colile, Esther went on to give birth to an HIV-free baby. This experience inspired Esther to become a Mentor Mother herself. Esther has steadily climbed the ladder at m2m, and today works in Mpumalanga as a Linkage Assistant where her role includes identifying orphaned and other vulnerable children living with or exposed to HIV in her community. Esther also ensures that they receive health care services, remain in school, and link them to other social services to ensure they get the additional support needed to thrive.

Meet Esther

Jessie Mzemba – Malawi

Adolescent Mentor Mother, Lilongwe District

Jessie is a community health worker with a focus on adolescents. She goes door-to-door in her community delivering health services and ensuring adolescent girls and young women have access to sexual and reproductive health information. She holds a Diploma in Public Health and a certificate in Disaster Risk Management. Jessie has a personal connection to her work—she found out she was living with HIV when she was 15 years old, after deciding to test because many of her peers were doing so. It took Jessie three years to come to terms with her diagnosis. In time, she found the courage to open up about her status to her aunt who she was living with, who gave her the care and support she needed to finish school and go to college.  After graduating college, Jessie worked as a filing clerk at Mitundu Hospital in the viral load testing department, where she met mothers2mothers Mentor Mothers. They encouraged Jessie to apply, and she joined m2m in 2021.

Meet Jessie

Faustina Ocansey – Ghana

Mentor Mother Team Lead, Ashaiman Community

Faustina’s story is one of strength and determination to overcome adversity. She found out she was living with HIV after both her husband and her six-month-old baby tested positive for both Tuberculosis and HIV. At the time, HIV treatment was not readily available in Ghana, and both passed away as they could not access the treatment they desperately needed. Left to care for her five surviving children on her own, Faustina faced many challenges—including stigma and discrimination in her community. Determined to help others in a similar position, Faustina spent close to a decade volunteering at a community hospital, where she helped people who were newly diagnosed with HIV to accept their status and find hope for their future. When mothers2mothers opened in Ghana in 2019, Faustina was employed as a Team Lead and Mentor Mother—finally earning a salary and recognition for the work she had been doing for years. In her role, she provides vital health education and services to pregnant and breastfeeding women and adolescents.  With her team, she also provides integrated early childhood development services designed to support the critical period of a child’s development. As a paid Community Health Worker, Faustina says she is able to better support her own family, while being a beacon of hope and healthy living in her community.

Meet Faustina

Bupe Sinkala - Zambia

Site Coordinator, Chaisa Community

Bupe is a community health worker, who is also trained to deliver some clinical services. This includes dry blood spot testing—a quick and effective method to test babies for HIV. This means that she can support stretched clinical staff, and ensure HIV-exposed infants are tested on time. As a Mentor Mother, Bupe says she dedicates her life to ensuring her clients have the information they need to make positive choices and stay in care for the long term. Bupe was diagnosed with HIV as she was preparing to get married. While her partner initially promised he would support her, he eventually left. Bupe felt broken and hopeless. One of her biggest fears—rejection—had come true. With support from her aunt, Bupe found the strength to recover. When she heard that mothers2mothers (m2m) was recruiting women living with HIV to become Community Health Workers, she felt that her experience could support others, and joined m2m in 2019.

Meet Bupe

mothers2mothers (m2m) is grateful to these inspiring supporters who have joined us to make nose and raise funds to end HIV and help create healthy, thriving families and communities across Africa. m2m Patrons promote our work globally, putting the spotlight on health and social challenges facing African women and families. m2m Ambassadors amplify these messages by promoting campaigns and spreading the word.

Patrons and Ambassadors

Annie Lennox, OBE – Singer-Songwriter, Human Rights Activist

“It is an absolute honour and privilege to be able to contribute to supporting mothers2mothers, whose outstanding work has transformed the lives of almost 1.5 million HIV-positive mothers across nine countries in sub-Saharan Africa to date. With their visionary and innovative Mentor Mother Model, the m2m methodology is a gold standard for the education and support of mothers living with HIV. While one in three pregnant women are HIV-positive in Southern Africa, m2m’s work continues to be absolutely essential.”

Meet Annie Lennox

Salma Hayek – Academy Award Nominated Actress, Producer, Director

“One of the things I found very impressive about mothers2mothers when talking to women who have gone through the mothers2mothers process is that at some point they all find themselves feeling almost like dust – like nothing – like dust that the wind can come, blow away and they can disappear; because their situation is so bad and they are so helpless – they can see no future and many of them thought about taking their lives. Then this sisterhood comes along and supports them, and these particles of dust become mountains. These girls that thought they had absolutely no worth can look themselves in the mirror and realise that they have not only changed the lives of many women but have saved thousands of children. Thousands of lives. And this is literal; I spoke to one Mentor Mother and we calculated that over 7000 HIV-negative kids have been born into this world because of her work alone, her work preventing the mother passing HIV to her baby.”

Meet Salma Hayek

Candice Swanepoel — South African Supermodel & Fashion Entrepreneur

“Motherhood and South Africa are two of my passions, so serving as an m2m Patron is a perfect fit for me. I am inspired by the incredible work done every day across eight nations by the HIV-positive women mothers2mothers employs as Mentor Mothers to end childhood AIDS and help women and their families to stay healthy and thrive. I fully understand just how daunting it can be to be pregnant for the first time. But I can’t even imagine what it must be like to have to deal with a life-changing diagnosis like HIV at the same time. Thankfully mothers2mothers and its sisterhood of Mentor Mothers are there to support women and families to get the lifesaving medical care they need.”

Meet Candice Swanepoel

Samantha Bond – Actress

“I am honoured to be a Patron for mothers2mothers and to join the 1,600 Mentor Mothers that are committed to creating a generation free from HIV. I have had the opportunity to spend time with several Mentor Mothers since supporting m2m, and have continuously been astounded by their strength and resilience. It is clear that they are a force to be reckoned with and are advocates for change not just within their own communities, but beyond.”

Meet Samantha Bond

Rochelle Humes – Television & Radio Host

“I am so honoured to join mothers2mothers as a Patron, having seen their invaluable work first-hand in Kenya in 2016. There, HIV-positive mothers told me about the anxious wait of finding out if their child was HIV-free but also about the hope and support they were given by m2m. Mentor Mothers, like the lovely Dorcus whom I met, have walked in their shoes and stand shoulder to shoulder with them by sharing knowledge and experience. As a mum of two little girls, my priority is that they grow into healthy teenagers. I’m excited to represent these inspiring women who help other mothers make this hope a reality.”

Meet Rochelle Humes


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