After studying in Munich, Dr Andreas Struengmann came to South Africa as a medical intern and met his wife Sue. The two travelled to Tsolo, in the Eastern Cape and were struck by the lack of resources in both the hospital where Andreas was placed and the school where Sue was working.
“We made a promise to each other then, that if we were ever successful enough, we would do our part to help young people in South Africa access a quality education.”
In 2007 the Andreas and Susan Struengmann Foundation was established to sponsor educational initiatives in the Western Cape. To date, the Foundation has launched the Sue Struengmann Chair in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Mental Health at the University of Cape Town (UCT), Disa Primary School in Imizamo Yethu in Hout Bay, as well as the Students For A Better Future High School Scholarship Programme.
Our five branches reflect our organisational values and the principles we aim to instill in our scholars, students and alumni.
Family creates a sense of belonging and a feeling of home. It is about growing together in the spirit of love and understanding. Family gives care and attention and supports a journey of personal growth. Family goes beyond the idea of the nuclear family, into the broader community, with a shared empathy and a collective responsibility for the well-being of others, of society, of humanity.
To have integrity is to be a person of your word. To say what you mean and to do what you say. People with integrity take ownership of their actions. They are accountable. They have self-respect and show that same respect to others. Integrity stands up for what is right, what is fair and what is true. Especially when it might be challenging or unpopular to do so.
We champion self-expression, curiosity and passion. They hold the clues to who our scholars want to be and the paths they want to take in life. We are here to light their way. By celebrating their uniqueness and individuality they come to understand what it means to value themselves and the special gifts they have to offer the world.
Our scholars are people first. With complex lived experiences, realities and challenges. An assessment of character might start with academics, but it does not end there. True well-being means nurturing the physical, psychological, financial, social, as well as the intellectual. This is essential if we are to properly prepare individuals for the demands of post-secondary and professional life.
A significant indicator of future success, grit means having the stamina to consistently work at achieving your goals. It is a work-ethic, a resilience, a determination to strive and to grow. Grit is having the mind-set of a marathon runner, not a sprinter. Knowing that it is ok to fall down. Because grit will get you back up again.
Halli is an experienced and accomplished development specialist, with over 15 years of working experience in education, healthcare, and social development. She has an extensive background in programme leadership, development and design of international programmes and is a specialist in strategy development and team leadership. In her role as Executive Head at SBF, Halli is responsible for operational and team management, programme strategy development, stakeholder relationship development and financial oversight.
Astrid Berg is a Psychiatrist, Child & Adolescent Psychiatrist as well as an Analyst. She is an Associate Professor at the University of Cape Town and a senior consultant in the Division of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry at the Red Cross Children’s Hospital in Cape Town where she heads the UCT Parent-Infant Mental Health Service.
Astrid has been involved in working in the community of Khayelitsha since 1995 where she is in charge of a weekly mother-baby mental health clinic.
She has written about this work and presented it extensively internationally. Her particular interest is in inter-cultural communication. This has also led her to work with Israeli and Palestinian colleagues in the Middle East – a collaboration that aims to increase understanding and build bridges.
Bruce spent twenty-six years serving as Headmaster of both state and independent high schools. He began his teaching career as a Biology Teacher and was the Head of Sea Point High School, Wynberg Boys’ High School, Diocesan School for Girls and most recently Herschel Girls’ School, from which he retired in 2012. Bruce’s affiliation with SBF began during his tenure at Herschel, one of the first schools to partner with the Foundation.
Upon his retirement, Bruce joined the SBF Advisory Board. Bruce is currently part of an innovative UCT Graduate Business School developed executive management programme for school leaders, with the goal of turning schools into centres of excellence in underperforming areas. The short-term goal of the ‘Principals Academy’ is to develop a strong corps of competent school leaders by exposing them to business school-style, executive management training, together with on-going mentoring and coaching.
Gordon Rushton is a practising attorney. He graduated in 1982 from the University of Cape Town with a BA LLB Degree. He is a director of Bowman Gilfillan Inc. and specializes in litigation. He has litigated extensively in the various High Courts in South Africa and has conducted litigation out of the Royal Courts of Justice in London, at the London Court of International Arbitration and in Italy.
Heather is currently the director of the South Africa Grants Programme for The TK Foundation, a private independent foundation supporting programmes working in the youth development and maritime sectors. Heather helped to plan and implement The TK Foundation’s first grants programme in South Africa. She is currently responsible for the selection, administration and oversight of The TK Foundation’s youth development projects in South Africa.
Heather has a strong background in fundraising and operations in the education and non-profit fields. Through her work with the St John’s College Foundation and the Student Sponsorship Programme, Heather was responsible for fundraising and donor relations as well as operational management. Prior to this work, Heather held positions with Standard Bank, Abt Associates and Procter & Gamble.
Henry Barenblatt has recently retired. In his business life, he was CEO of Research Surveys, South Africa’s largest consumer research company. Henry holds a number of marketing and business management qualifications both in South Africa and from the Graduate School of Business, Stanford University, California. He has spoken as guest lecturer at many academic institutions and has frequently addressed the SAMRA (South African Marketing Research Association) convention being awarded the MRSA trophy in 1991 and the SAMRA trophy in 1996 for the best paper presented at the 18th SAMRA Convention. Henry is also past chairman of the Cape Town branch of the International Wine & Food Society. He is an active member of the Young President’s Organisation (YPO)/World President’s Organisation (WPO) and completed his term as chairman of the Cape Town Chapter of YPO.