Leadership Team

Mark Tomlinson

Professor in the Department of Psychology at Stellenbosch

Mark Tomlinson

Background

Mark Tomlinson is a Professor in the Department of Psychology at Stellenbosch University. He has a Masters Degree in Clinical Psychology from the University of Cape Town and a PhD from the University of Reading (United Kingdom). He has a particular interest in maternal health and infant and child development in conditions of high social adversity, as well as developing community-based prevention programmes.

 

Work

Mark has completed work in South Africa investigating the association between postpartum depression and the mother-infant relationship, and the impact of this association on infant and child development amongst poor women living in conditions of high social adversity.

He has also completed a community-based trial on improving the quality of the mother-infant relationship and infant attachment in South Africa. Recently, Mark has begun to focus on the health system challenges of scaling up services for infants and children. All of his studies have been designed in order to create an evidence base on how to develop and implement evidence based, cost-effective interventions in both urban poor and rural settings that can be scaled up and delivered on a wide scale.

Professor Tomlinson has published extensively in Lancet, PLoS Medicine, British Journal of Psychiatry, Bulletin of the World Health Organization and Child Development amongst others.

Read more about Mark, here.

or Follow him, @marksceptic

Sarah Skeen

Director for the Partnership for Alcohol and AIDS Intervention Research

Sarah Skeen

Background

Sarah Skeen is the Programme Director for the Partnership for Alcohol and AIDS Intervention Research (PAAIR). She has a Masters in International Public Health, and is currently completing a PhD as a part of the Child Community Care study. Sarah is also responsible for coordinating the Saving Brains Thula Sana, Child Community Care, and Context Assessment in Community Health projects.

 

Work

Before joining Stellenbosch University in 2012, Sarah worked on the Mental Health and Poverty Project at UCT and in the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse at the World Health Organization in Geneva. Her research interests include child and adolescent mental health and development, alcohol use, and community interventions.

Read more about Sarah on LinkedIn, Researchgate, or Googlescholar.

Jacqueline Stewart

Director of the Khayelitsha Research Centre

Jacqueline Stewart

Background

Jacqueline is the Director of the Khayelitsha Research Centre. She is a qualified clinical social worker with a PhD in psychology from Stellenbosch University, and has worked for many years in the mental health field.

Work

Jaqueline began her career at the Cape Mental Health Society where she worked for several years. Following this, she worked at the Trauma Centre for Victims of Violence and Torture, heading up the Counselling Department. Jaqueline has worked at the University of Stellenbosch since 2008.

Jaqueline started out working exclusively on a randomised control trial in Khayelitsha, but has subsequently been involved in running many other of Professor Tomlinson’s studies from our research centre in Khayelitsha.

Jason Bantjes

Co-principal Investigator

Jason Bantjes

Background

Jason Bantjes is a psychologist and senior lecturer in the Department of Psychology at Stellenbosch University. He completed his professional training at Rhodes University and is the South African National representative for the International Association for Suicide Prevention. Jason is currently involved in the Eyethu Soccer Project.

Work

Jason’s published research focuses on suicide and self-harm as well as gender issues and disability sport. In his work at Prevention Research, Jason is currently involved in the Eyethu Soccer Project as principal co-investigator.

Read more about Jason, here.

Management Team

Zena Jacobs

Prevention Research Unit Coordinator

Zena Jacobs

Background

Zena Jacobs is the Research and Ethics Coordinator for the PAAIR project and provides general support to all our activities. Zena has extensive experience in working in the monitoring and evaluation field, with a diverse range of stakeholders including international donors, government departments, and NGOs and CBOs in various development sectors.

Work

Zena Jacobs is the Research and Ethics Coordinator for the PAAIR project and provides general support to all our activities.

Marguerite Marlow

Research Project Manager

Marguerite Marlow

Background

Marguerite is a research project manager on the Prevention Research team. She completed her Bachelor of Arts degree in Humanities at Stellenbosch University and graduated from the University of Cape Town with a BSocSci Honours degree in Psychology. She returned to Stellenbosch University to complete her MA thesis in Psychology, conducting qualitative research on the barriers and facilitators to safe breastfeeding practices amongst mothers in HIV-affected communities in South Africa.

Work

In 2015, Marguerite started work as the project manager for the Mphatlalatsane Integrated ECCD, HIV and Nutrition project, managing the implementation and evaluation of the Mphatlalatsane RCT in Lesotho. Her main roles and responsibilities are related to the Mphatlalatsane project, but she also assists on other projects, specifically in training and supervision, data coding and quality control, as well as reviewing ethics applications and amendments for the unit’s new and ongoing projects.

Marguerite’s research interests include early child development and parenting skills-building through community-based intervention programmes, integration of mental health services into primary care and community health worker training for public health interventions in low-resource settings. She is conducting her doctoral research as part of the Mphatlalatsane RCT in Lesotho.

 

Christina Laurenzi

Research Project Manager

Christina Laurenzi

Background

Christina Laurenzi is the project manager for the CLAC2 Evaluation. Christina holds a BA in Politics and Global Health and Health Policy from Princeton University (US) and an MSc in African Studies from Oxford University (UK).

Work

Before joining Prevention Research, Christina spent a year in the Eastern Cape, coordinating the research team for the Zithulele Birth Follow-Up Study, as part of the ReachOut 1956 International Fellowship. Her research interests include maternal and child health and development, social service provision and home- and community-based interventions, and women’s migration and family health. Christina is the project manager for the CLAC2 Evaluation, a collaboration with Plan International based in western Kenya.

Nick Dowdall

Research Project Manager

Nick Dowdall

Background

Nicholas Dowdall is the research project manager for the BEBS project. He completed his undergraduate studies in Psychology, Economics and Spanish with distinction, and completed his honours degree in Psychology at the University of Cape Town in 2014, graduating as the top student. He then completed an M.Sc degree in Evidence-based Social Intervention and Policy Evaluation at Oxford University on a Rhodes Scholarship where his research focus shifted to early childhood development and parenting interventions.

Work

Nick’s past research at UCT focussed on the impact of neighbourhood-level deprivation on mental health outcomes in South Africa.

He is currently working towards a DPhil at Oxford University that explores the effects of a book sharing intervention on child behaviour, socio-emotional development and cognition. The project is a collaboration between Stellenbosch, Oxford and Reading Universities and is being conducted in Khayelitsha.

Nicholas is also interested in dissemination and scaling of ECD interventions in South Africa. He is a Sazburg Global Fellow and was a Hult Prize Finalist in 2015.

Sarah Gordon

Research Project Manager

Sarah Gordon

Background

Sarah Gordon is a project manager on the Prevention Research team. She graduated from the University of Cape Town on the Deans Merit List with a Bachelor of Social Science in Psychology and Social Development. In 2014 she graduated (Cum Laude) with a BA Psychology Honours from Stellenbosch University. Sarah started working for Stellenbosch University in 2014 as a tutor in the Psychology Department.

Work

Sarah joined Prevention Research in 2015, while completing her MA thesis in Psychology at Stellenbosch University. Sarah’s work for Prevention Research began with working on the Data Collector Study (as a part of the Community Care Study), managing the Selemela Study in Lesotho as well as various other PAAIR Projects. Sarah now works as the project manager of the 7/8-year follow up of the Philani RCT. She aims to start her PhD in 2018. Her research interests include early childhood development, cognitive development, social development and social (friendship) networks.

Xanthe Hunt

Junior Researcher and Social Media Manager

Xanthe Hunt

Background

Xanthe is a junior researcher and social media manager with Prevention Research. She has an honours in journalism and an honours in psychology from Stellenbosch University, and is currently conducting her PhD in psychology at the same institution. Xanthe joined the team in 2015 as social media manager, and has since expanded her involvement into writing, researching, and working as a project assistant in Kenya.

Work

Xanthe’s fields of interest include disability, psychopathology, and early child development, as well as academic communication. Xanthe works closely with the whole team to ensure that as many of the findings from Prevention Research studies are read by as many people from as many backgrounds as possible.

Xanthe is currently involved in the CLAC2 project in Kisumu, Kenya, and has spent time working there over the past year.

Zanele Siqabatiso Melani

Khayelitsha Research Centre Coordinator

Zanele Siqabatiso Melani

Background

Zanele is the coordinator of the Prevention Research centre in Khayelitsha. She oversees various data collection activities and works as a senior data collector on our Cape Town based projects. Zanele has a background and training in nursing, conflict management, and computer skills.

Work

Zanele started working for Prevention Research in 2012 as a data collector for Saving Brains and the Community Cohort study. She now works on our Cape Town-based projects, including BEBS, as a data collector and coder.

Shoeshoe Mofokeng

Research Coordinator, Mphatlalatsane Project

Shoeshoe Mofokeng

Background

Shoeshoe is a a research coordinator on the Mphatlalatsane project. Shoeshoe studied at the National University of Lesotho, after which she obtained a Masters in Social Work from the University of Stellenbosch. Since this time, she has taken part in numerous trainings, including ones to deal with Male Circumcision under local Anesthesia, Comprehensive pediatric HIV care and Treatment, HIV/AIDS and the world of work, as well as training on basic knowledge of sign language.

 

Work

Shoeshoe has worked on numerous projects, including as a volunteer counsellor. She began work as an assistant administrator at the Social Work Department of the University of Stellenbosch, and now works on the Mphatlalatsane project in Lesotho, where she plays a coordinator role under the team leader, Marguerite Marlow.

Tembinkosi Qondela

Soccer Assessment Coordinator, Eyethu Soccer Project

Tembinkosi Qondela

Background

Tembinkosi is a research coordinator for the Soccer Project. Tembinkosi holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Adult Education and Development from the University of Cape Town.

 

Work

Tembinkosi worked at the University of Cape Town as a researcher and an educator for ten years before founding Whizz ICT Centre – a community based organisation that aims to link technology to development. After working as director of the centre for 8 years, Tembinkosi joined Prevention Research, and now works as a research coordinator for the Eyethu Soccer Project.

Stephan Rabie

Junior Researcher

Stephan Rabie

Background

Stephan Rabie is a junior researcher with Prevention Research. He completed his Bachelor of Arts degree in Humanities and Bachelor of Arts Honours in Psychology at Stellenbosch University. In 2017, he obtained his PhD in Psychology from the same institution, which focused on developing and standardizing the first career assessment measure available in an African language.

Work

Stephan joined Prevention Research in 2016, working as a project assistant on the Mphatlalatsane Project. Since then, he has expanded his involvement into managing the Thinking Schools project, as well as our ECVT assessment coding team. Currently, he is involved with the assessment component of the Eyethu Soccer Project. Stephan’s research interests include infant and child development, language development, psychometric testing, and cross-cultural test applicability and adaptation.

Administration and support

Nomabhaso Mantyi

Administrator and Data Collector

Nomabhaso Mantyi

Background

Nomabhaso is a data collector in the Philani study. Nomabhaso Mantyi started working for Stellenbosch University in 2011 as a biomarker administrator for the Philani study. When this sub-study was completed she took over the role of Philani administrator which she still holds today.

 

Work

Nomabhaso is central to the team as she coordinates many logistical and technical aspects of our work which includes updating our research console with notes on our participants and making sure that all cell phones are functioning optimally for data collection to take place.

Nomabhaso has recently also been trained up as a data collector in the Philani study and is used when we are particularly busy. Her attention to detail and social skills with participants are a great asset to the team.

Vuyolwethu Notholi

Intervention Facilitator and Data Collector

Vuyolwethu Notholi

Background

Vuyolwethu Notholi is an intervention facilitator and data collector for BEBS. She has a background in recruitment and data collection.

Work

She joined the Prevention Research team as a recruiter in 2009. She remained in that role for over two years, recruiting pregnant women for the Philani study. In 2011 Vuyo was appointed as an intervention facilitator and data collector for the book-sharing project, and currently works on BEBS.

Yusra Agnew

Accountant

Yusra Agnew

Teams and Research Assistants

Mphatlalatsane Team

Lesotho

Mphatlalatsane Team

Research Coordinator:

  • Shoeshoe Mofokeng

Data Collectors:

  • Malichaba Mats’umunyane
  • Teboho Mokoena
  • Limakatso Mofelikoane
  • Thabo Makhele
  • Lejone Ramokheseng
  • Sebuoeng Mohale
  • Neslon Tsepiso Ratsiu
  • Matseliso Phetoka
  • Mokhantso Mohale
  • Relebohile Senokho
  • Thabitha Lemphane

Eyethu Team

Cape Town

Eyethu Team

Khayelitsha

  • Zanele
  • Vuyo
  • Phumza
  • Akhona
  • Nomabhaso
  • Noluncedo
  • Vuyokazi
  • Nomandla
  • Noma

Khayelitsha Team

Khayelitsha Team

Data collectors

Zanele Melani

Vuyulwethu Notholi

Nomabhaso Mantyi

Noluncedo Ntozakhe

Vuyokazi Tasana

Nomandla Mhlaba

Nomawethu Shumani

 

CLAC2 Team

CLAC2 Team

Project Assistant

  • Vallery Obure

Data Collectors

  • Stephen Owino
  • Winny Ochieng
  • Winnie Ojiayo
  • Geoffrey Otieno
  • George Ochieng
  • Michael Odhiambo

Partners

Mary-Jane Rotheram-Borus

Professor of Clinical Psychology

Mary-Jane Rotheram-Borus

Background

Mary Jane Rotheram-Borus, PhD is a professor of clinical psychology and Director of the Global Center for Children and Families at the Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior. Her research interests include HIV/AIDS prevention with adolescents, children and family wellness, assessment and modification of children’s social skills, suicide among adolescents and homeless youths. Dr. Rotheram-Borus has spent the past 30 years developing, evaluating, and disseminating evidence-based interventions for children and families. She has directed and implemented several landmark intervention studies that have demonstrated the benefits of providing behavior change programs and support to families in risky situations. Several of these programs have received national and international recognition. She mounted and evaluated multiple interventions which have been selected and reviewed by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the American Psychological Association (APA) as efficacious programs.

Peter Cooper

Professor of Psychopathology

Peter Cooper

Background

Peter Cooper is Professor of Psychopathology in the School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences at the University of Reading in the UK. He is also Professor Extraordinnaire at Stellenbosch University and Honorary Professor at the University of Cape Town. He was an undergraduate at the University of Cape Town, did clinical psychology training in Oxford, and holds a DPhil from Oxford. He is a Fellow of the British Academy.

Work

Peter has carried out extensive research on postpartum depression – its nature, prevalence, course, consequences, prediction, prevention, and treatment – both in the UK and South Africa. He has also conducted research in the areas of eating disorders and child anxiety disorder. He has a particular interest in the development and evaluation of interventions, especially parenting interventions. His current work mainly concerns establishing an evidence base for a book-sharing intervention he and Lynne Murray developed and establishing protocols for its dissemination (see www.mikhulutrust.org).

Read more about Peter, here.

Lynne Murray

Professor of Developmental Psychology

Lynne Murray

Background

Lynne Murray is a Professor of Developmental Psychology at the University of Reading (and Professor Extra-ordinary at Stellenbosch University, South Africa). The author of The Social Baby, she has published widely on young children’s psychological development and parenting.

Work

Lynne Murray’s research aims to elucidate the mechanisms involved in the development of child and adolescent psychopathology, together with its prevention and treatment. She has conducted both longitudinal and experimental studies to investigate bi-directional influences in early mother-infant interactions, and the dimensions of maternal communication to which young infants are sensitive. Over the past twenty-five years, she has examined the effects of postnatal depression on the mother-child relationship and child development, following up a sample from infancy until the age of 23 years. She has also studied the effects of cleft lip and palate on mother-infant interactions on child development. In each case, Lynne Murray has researched the treatment implications of the basic scientific work, most notably investigating treatments for postnatal depression, both in the UK and the developing world.

Lorraine Sherr

Professor of Clinical and Health Psychology

Lorraine Sherr

Background

Prof Lorraine Sherr is a Clinical Psychologist and head of the Health Psychology Unit at the University College London (UCL).  She studied Psychology at Warwick University with a PhD on the importance of Communication in health care and  a wide research portfolio encompassing empirical research, theory, review, evidence, policy and advocacy.

Work

Prof Sherr has worked at National and International levels on HIV, mental health, treatment adherence, switching, gender, pregnancy, families, children, parenting, palliative care, discrimination and HIV infection.  Prof Lorraine Sherr is editor of three International Journals; AIDS Care (in its 27th year of publication under her editorship), Psychology Health and Medicine and Vulnerable Children and Youth Studies.  She is one of the organisers of the AIDSImpact conferences which delve into the detailed psychosocial aspects of HIV.  She has wide spread policy work such as serving on the WHO Strategic Advisory Committee (STAC), chairing the WHO Disclosure guidelines group and providing input for Governments, USAID, Save the Children, UNICEF, PEPFAR, REPSSI, French ANRS, British Psychological Society, British HIV Association, IAS and USA Congressional initiatives.

Lucie Cluver

Professor of Child and Family Social Work

Lucie Cluver

Background

Lucie Cluver is a Professor of Child and Family Social Work, in the Centre for Evidence-Based Social Intervention in the Department of Social Policy and Intervention, and an Honorary Lecturer in Psychiatry and Mental Health at the University of Cape Town. She works closely with the South African government, USAID-PEPFAR, UNICEF, the World Health Organisation and Save the Children.

Work

Lucie works with numerous private and public institutions and organisations to provide research evidence that can improve the lives of children affected by HIV/AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa. Recent projects include the ‘Young Carers Study’, the world’s largest study of risk and resilience amongst AIDS-affected children, following 6000 children longitudinally in South Africa, and the ‘Orphan Resilience Study’, which was the developing world’s first longitudinal study of the impacts of AIDS-orphanhood on children, following 1000 children over four years in urban South Africa. With Prevention Research, Lucie works on the Parenting for Lifelong Health and Mphatlalatsane projects.

Alex Tsai

Alex Tsai

Barak Morgan

Barak Morgan

Alastair van Heerden

Alastair van Heerden

Ingrid le Roux

Founder of Philani

Ingrid le Roux

Background

Ingrid le Roux is the founder of Philani, She studied medicine at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden, and received a Master’s Degree in Public Policy from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University. She worked as a doctor before founding Philani Maternal, Child Health and Nutrition Project.

Work

Aside from her work with Philani, Ingrid has taken up positions with the Department of Health, as well as Princeton University. Ingrid has received numerous awards, and published research papers in prestigious journals.

Karl le Roux

Karl le Roux

Hiltrud Otto

Senior Associate

Hiltrud Otto

Background

 

Hiltrud Otto is a child development scholar specializing in the study of cultural influences on early socio-emotional development.  She received her Ph.D. in 2009 for an in depth-study on the development of attachment relationships among Cameroonian Nso farmers from the University of Osnabrueck, Germany. As a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow of the Martin Buber Society of the Humanities in Israel, she extended this line of research, collaborating in various national and international projects to promote and deepen context-informed research. In 2015/2016 she was also a visiting scholar at the City University of New York, where she is involved in the study of social cognition.

 

Work

Hiltrud’s context-informed approach to child development and her observational studies contributed significantly in the field of child development. Her work encompasses the areas of developmental psychology, clinical psychology and psychological anthropology. Her findings challenge many of the underlying premises and assumptions of conventional research on the role of caregiving and its consequences for infant development. She has published extensively, and co-edited the book: Different Faces of Attachment: Cultural Variations on a Universal Human Need in 2014. Her future plans include carrying out field research in highly-adverse environments. Currently she is on maternity leave, gaining first-hand experiences as a mother.

Pasco Fearon

Professor of Developmental Psychopathology

Pasco Fearon