Our Staff

Our HOPE staff members are based in Cape Town and are always ready to help –
Contact us at info@hopecapetown.org

Dr. Izane Reyneke

Chief Executive Officer of HOPE Cape Town Association

After obtaining both her B.Sc (Psychology) and MB.Ch.B. degrees at the University of the Free State she moved to Cape Town at the end of 2002 and completed her medical internship at New Somerset Hospital during 2003. It was here where she developed a keen interest in the management of HIV.

In 2004, she started the ARV unit at Wesfleur Hospital in Atlantis where she had performed her Community Service year. She remained in charge of this unit until 2013.

She obtained a certificate that is co-certified by Yale and FPD in Advanced Health Management (2009) and a diploma in HIV Management through The College of Family Physicians of South Africa (2015).

In 2013, she joined the HOPE Cape Town team as Program Coordinator, overseeing all projects and was involved in the day-to-day management of the organisation.

She was appointed as CEO of the HOPE Cape Town Association in September 2021 and in this role will oversee the daily operations of the organisation and shape the overall vision and strategic plan.

Marlene Whitehead

Programme Manager

Marlene Whitehead has been appointed as Programme Manager at HOPE Cape Town. Given her strong background in financial and programmes development and management, Marlene acted as a resource person to build capacity in the Anglican Church of Southern Africa’s (ACSA) dioceses in six Southern African countries from 1989 to 2008. Having received training and certification in Financial Management and Programmes Management from USAID in Washington DC, and with funding secured from USAID and DfID (UK), she headed the intermediary grant-making Board of ACSA and managed more than 900 community-based projects. Prior to being recruited by HOPE Cape Town in 2017 in the capacity as Donor Relations Manager, Marlene was employed as the Research and Development Officer at the Historic Schools Restoration Project where she worked closely with educationists at historically significant schools throughout South Africa and the Department of Basic Education at provincial and national government level. Marlene has served on various NPO boards which include the GOAL Trust, Fikelela, Braehead House Retirement Housing Trust and ACSA Pensions Board.

Melanie Wagner

European Relations: Admin Support

Melanie Wagner joined HOPE Cape Town in 2023 in the position of European Relations: Admin Support. She is a qualified teacher and has a postgraduate degree in Applied Linguistics. Prior to joining HOPE, she held various positions in education, teaching and lecturing ECD, languages and linguistics, and then occupied roles in legal and educational publishing. Melanie is passionate about people empowerment and youth development, and is a swimming coach in her spare time

Charmaine Pillay

Financial Accountant

Charmaine was born in Durban. Before she moved to Cape Town she and her family lived in Gauteng and Tanzania. She worked with NGOs and Parastatal Finances for many years before she was appointed as Financial Accountant at HOPE Cape Town in 2020

Shelly Stamatiadis

Marketing & Communications Coordinator
Shelly is a passionate communicator with over 25 years’ experience as a stakeholder engagement specialist across the disciplines of public relations, marketing, strategic communication, brand building and eventing. During her tenure in senior positions at two of SA’s leading communications consultancies she developed and implemented strategic communications and content strategies for various blue-chip, private and public sector and lifestyle clients. Shelly joined the team at HOPE Cape Town in April 2021.

Sonia Daniels

HOPE to Home Coordinator

Sonia Daniels started to work at HOPE Cape Town in April 2010. She is the Care and Support Coordinator at the Paediatric Wards of the Tygerberg Hospital. Sonia counsels mothers and caregivers and does group talks on a number of HIV related subjects. Additionally, Sonia is also involved in the volunteer and elective student programme and works closely with the PR office of the Tygerberg Hospital.

Dr. Ana Houston

HOPE Cape Town Doctor

Ana completed the required 2 year internship at the Pietermaritzburg Hospital Complex in KwaZulu Natal in 2007-2008. She then completed her community service year in Tintswalo Hospital, Mpumalanga, rotating through 6 months of Adult Internal Medicine (including TB wards, clinics and psychiatry) and 6 months in Accident & Emergency. After a short break to travel in South America, Ana took up a post as a Senior House Officer in paediatrics at the Red Cross Children’s Hospital, Cape Town, in 2010-2011. After completing her DCh, she moved to Michael Maphongwana Community Health Centre in Khayelitsha, where she practiced as a Family ARV Medical Officer from 2012-2014. During this time, she initiated the adolescent ARV service at the clinic. Ana took a month sabbatical to join an internship at the International House of Prayer, Kansas City, MO, USA in 2015. Upon returning from the States in October 2015, Ana joined the team at HOPE Cape Town as a part time Medical Officer.

Robyn Meissner

Occupational Therapist
Robyn graduated from the University of Cape Town with a BSc in Occupational Therapy in 2009. She has many years of experience in working and supporting the needs of children and families infected and affected by HIV. Her MSc dissertation (funded by the National Health Scholars Program) earned a distinction upon graduating in 2016 from the University of Cape Town. Robyn joined HOPE Cape Town in May 2017.

Maria van Blerk

Social Worker

Maria completed her Hons BDiac (Social Work) in 1988. During her career, she worked as a Social Worker for the SANDF and PEN, a Pretoria based NGO. At PEN she specialized in therapy with children. She started working for HOPE Cape Town on a contract basis in 2013, and joined the HOPE Cape Town team as a permanent staff member in 2018. She focuses on the enablement and empowerment of vulnerable children.

Zanele Hali

Clinical Nurse Practitioner and Operational Manager

Zanele obtained her BCur Nursing Degree at the University of The Western Cape in 2009 and was placed in Harry Comay TB Hospital in George to perform her Community Service year in 2010. On completion of the Com-Serv year, she moved back to Cape Town to join City Health at Site C Youth clinic in Khayelitsha 2011. Her primary role as a Professional Nurse was adolescent HIV/ARV care and comprehensive SRH services. She left City Health in 2014 to join Kheth’Impilo Aids Free Living NGO where she worked as a Quality Nurse Mentor. During her stay at KI, she completed her BTech Degree in Primary Health at Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT). At the end of year 6, Zanele joined Wits Reproductive Health and HIV Institute (Wits RHI) to work with Adolescent and Young Women in the prevention of HIV, teenage pregnancy and Gender Based Violence. Zanele joined Hope Cape Town on 1st October 2021 and will be the operational manager of the Holistic Health Centre.

Meagan Nel

Grade R Educator

Meagan Nel is a qualified, friendly, and enthusiastic educator who has many years of experience in Foundation Phase teaching – including educating children with learning barriers. She joined HOPE Cape Town in 2022 and initiated the first Global Developmental Delay Grade R class in January 2023.

Violet Avontuur

Auxillary Social Worker

Violet joined HOPE Cape Town in October 2010 and initially served as a Community Health Worker at the Ravensmead and Uitsig Clinics. During her next placement at Tygerberg Children's Hospital, she developed a passion for Social Work and then transferred to work at our Blikkiesdorp Community Outreach Centre alongside Maria Van Blerk, our social worker. Violet graduated as an Auxillary Social Worker in 2022 and works closely with the Playgroup and the Boys and Girls Support Groups at Blikkiesdorp.

Nicole Boonzaaier

Teacher’s Assistant

Nicole Boonzaaier is the teacher’s assistant at Bayerngarden Centre for Early Childhood Development. Nicole has her Level 4 Qualification in Early Childhood Development (ECD)and has experience within the ECD sector. She is currently completing her Bachelors in Education within the foundation phase.

Luke Whitehead

Maintenance & Technical

The Nex-Indawo Yethu campus


Luke joins HOPE Cape Town as Maintenance & Technical Co-ordinator/Librarian. After studying Hotel Management at the IHS International Hotel School (2003) and Web & graphic design at ITBC IT business campus (2006), he later established and ran his own business for the last nine years. Luke is passionate about football.

Brigitte le Roux

The Nex-Indawo Yethu campus

The friendly, welcoming face of Hope Cape Town. Born in Stellenbosch and studied at Boland College Stellenbosch where she obtained a Junior Bookkeeping certification in 2010. Brigitte has worked in various places where community was the main focus, but for the last 8 years worked as admin assistant for a private company where she was always passionate about the company's and customers state and well-being.

Verdene Safers

Programme co-ordinator

Born in the Eastern Cape, Verdene is passionate about mental health and social research. Her passion for mental well-being was further sparked after obtaining her bachelor’s degree in psychology. Thereafter she gained experience working in trauma crisis counselling, suicide prevention and substance abuse recovery. In 2019 she entered the world of social research where she worked as a research assistant and coordinator on various TB, HIV and mental health research projects across the country. She remains immensely thankful for the NGO’s, psychiatric and research institutions, where she gained valuable career experience which shaped and prepared her for her exciting new journey at HOPE Cape Town.

Chevonne Talamarkes

General Worker

The Nex-Indawo Yethu campus

Charles Ghazu

General Worker

The Nex-Indawo Yethu campus


Community Health Workers

HOPE Cape Town recruits community members from areas where resources and services are scarce.

HOPE Cape Town recruited and employed its first Community Health Worker in September 2002, and we now employ 12 Community Health Workers based at 11 community sites.

They are based at their local municipal and provincial clinic, and are able to provide a wide variety of services, including HIV testing and counselling, Tuberculosis testing, family planning, sexually transmitted infections testing and counselling, and cervical screening. They are also involved with prevention (in the form of educational talks), as well as HIV treatment and management (including adherence support).

The Community Health Workers each complete a tertiary-level distance learning course on HIV care and counselling, and they are provided with ongoing training to keep them up to date with the latest developments in their field. The work that the Community Health Workers do increases the treatment capacity at their local clinic, and they become an integral part of the daily functioning of their respective clinic.