Our Board

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Ikhaya Le Themba places a strong emphasis on accountability and transparency, we have an amazing Board of Directors who are constantly looking at better ways to serve the community. Let’s introduce them to you:

Grant Banwell

Chairman of Ikhaya Le Themba Board

Grant is the Chairman of the Ikhaya Le Themba Board. He also serves as a Directing Elder of a local church and a Director of the Four12 global partnership of churches.

Grant considers it a privilege to be the Chairman of the Ikhaya Le Themba Board and to work with the incredible team that God has blessed the organisation with. He has a deep love for people and for God and believes that it is through faithfulness to both that the nation can be changed.

Before Grant got called into serving the Lord full-time, he was a Director of an architectural practice. He is married to his childhood sweetheart Kim and they have four children, Claudia, Hannah, Judah and Jedidiah.

Gerhard Claassen

Independent Non-Executive Director

Gerhard is an attorney by trade, specialising in commercial and corporate law. He has been in private practice for over 17 years and loves his job! He has always had a heart for the less privileged and has walked a long road with Ikhaya Le Themba and many other non-profit organisations over the years. His heart is to serve, love and be of value where he can. He loves people and wants to glorify God in all he does.

Gerhard is married to an amazing women, Amrei and has 6 small kids and loves spending time – especially around the braai – with his family and friends!

Ross Gillespie

Director of Ikhaya Le Themba

Ross oversees the Marketing and Media of Ikhaya Le Themba. With experience as an Operations Manager for emerging NGO’s, his knowledge on the day to day logistics serves us well. As well as a Director, Ross is a full-time Elder in a local church, currently leading the Wynberg congregation in the southern suburbs of Cape Town.

Ross graduated from Stellenbosch University with a BA in Theology and spent three years leading and pastoring students. Following that, he spent two years as the Operations Manager for a NGO based in Hout Bay, Cape Town. 

Ross is married to Leigh, and they have two young children, Olivia and Evan. As a family they are passionate about seeing communities transformed and uplifted by the Good News of salvation in Jesus Christ.

John De Beer

Director of Ikhaya Le Themba

John has been involved with Ikhaya Le Themba over the past 12 months, helping with decision making and leading the various teams, as well as building relationships with our partners, both new and current. He is also employed as a full-time Elder at a local church in Cape Town.

Coming from a poor upbringing, John has always had a heart to see the underprivileged and previously disadvantaged communities uplifted and restored. Believing that: "any difference that I can make is always a privilege"; his heart is to train and coach people into becoming better leaders, ultimately helping their teams to grow into their full potential. His dreams and aspirations are about seeing as many people touched and changed through real love that people see in Ikhaya Le Themba. Simple, powerful, life-changing love. Love that goes beyond words. 

John is married to his wonderful wife, Christa and have two amazing kids. He enjoys spending his free time running along the beach front, biking and playing a round of golf. 


Ian Richardson

Director of Ikhaya Le Themba and Special Projects Manager

Together with his wife Theresa, Ian is one of the founding members and directors of Ikhaya Le Themba.

For Ian, working in different communities and with people of diverse cultures, brings many challenges but even more wonderful “rewards”. Through Ikhaya le Themba, Ian has seen lives transformed and hope and joy brought to many.

As Ikhaya Le Themba’s Special Projects Manager, Ian is responsible for ensuring that the organisation operates according to the “plumb line”. His passion is to help people in their understanding of Scripture and to experience God as they put their newly acquired skills to work helping others and building strong communities.

Ian spent 22 years in the Engineering Design / Quality Assurance / Research & Development industry. Before becoming involved with Ikhaya Le Themba, he was self-employed practicing architectural design and building project management.