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Small Distant Vulnerable Rural Communities (SDVRCs) in the Northern Cape

The Northern Cape has over 200 SDVRCs, many with little vision or hope for the future, other than survival • few prospects for progress • an increasing risk of negative external influences aggravating crime • degradation of natural resources and regional culture and heritage • gradual destruction of architectural heritage • declining economic activity • long term unemployment • low work ethics • poverty
  • Strengths

    Architectural heritage, authentic culture and language, fresh air, open spaces, great natural resources, silence, low crime rate, low cost of housing, and lifestyle simplicity.

  • Opportunities

    • Increasing focus and attention to development in this space by research institutions, universities, local and international NGOs and funding institutions.

    • Development of agricultural value chains opening up opportunities for agri-processing.

    • Increasing development of niche-tourism

Footsteps Foundation Projects

Become a project champion:


• The wool value chain re-innovation • Agricultural value chain development • New crop development • Diversified farming practices • Emerging farmer development • Reintroduction of horses and donkey carts • Organic farming • Alternative predation management



• Niche Karoo tourism • Archeology landmarks • Historical landmarks • Karoo Art and other routes • Accommodation and support services • Karoo cooking experience • Hunting tourism • Music, art and culinary festivals



• Primary and secondary processing of agricultural products • Manufacturing of Karoo specific products for export • Infrastructure and logistics development • Circular economy opportunities


Youth development

•  Sport development and coaching • Art, dance, music, theatre development • Technology training and development • Leadership development academy • City youth volunteering


Architectural heritage

• Building renovation and maintenance cluster • Building and town development guidelines • Repurposing of buildings towards attracting tourism


Small business development

• Incubator establishment • SME training and support • Technology enablement • Connecting SMEs into regional and international value chains


Environmental restoration and protection

• Green farming practices including predator management • Renewable energy development • Cleaning up of the environment • Greening of the town • Recycling

Tools & Resources

Expert research projects • formal research institutions • innovative technologies • MotherFox governance values • principles and practices • students and volunteers • project management • government agencies for guidance and resourcing (DTI Incubator Handbook) • government and other focused funding sources • tried and tested business models and lessons from initiatives already successfully deployed elsewhere!



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Multiple pathways to sustainable development: South Africa - Green Economy

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Chair: Mr Gregory Cronje CA(SA)

Greg is a consummate professional who gained extensive experience over 20 years in managing resources on large assignments as well as reporting on these at Executive Management and Audit Committee level. He is a qualified Chartered Accountant, Registered Auditor and Tax practitioner who trained and worked in 2 big four audit firms. He was a finance director of the local chapter of an international donor organisation. He currently chairs two audit committees and is a past member of the Executive Committee of the Western Cape Institute of Internal Auditors. His life philosophy is talking is nothing but doing is something.

Chair: Mr Gregory Cronje CA(SA)
Footsteps Foundation trustee
Trustee: Ms Lisle Svenson

Lisle is a Seasoned Management Consultant, Project Manager, Researcher, Facilitator and Lecturer with over 12 years experience in Business and Management Consulting with many large firms in South Africa. Her cross-industry experience spans both the private and public sector. She lectures Principles of Business Management, Project Management and Strategic Management at the School of Business & Finance at the University of the Western Cape and serves as a trustee on the Distell Development Trust. She is currently working on her Phd proposal on agricultural value chains, cluster and SMME development..

Trustee: Ms Lisle Svenson
Footsteps Foundation trustee
Trustee: Mrs Kathleen Elizabeth Steyn

Kathy’s vocation spans 26 years of facilitation, lecturing, corporate coaching and instructional design. This experience was gained consulting with numerous South African entrepreneurial companies; national and international corporate companies; SA parastals and management colleges. She has a degree in Chemistry (UCT) and a BSc (Hons) Psychology – (Unisa). Her motivation and inspiration is driven by Einstein’s famous quote: “Nothing happens until something moves”.

Trustee: Mrs Kathleen Elizabeth Steyn
Footsteps Foundation trustee
Dr Karin Badenhorst

Karin has a PhD in ICT and an MBA from the Graduate School of Business in Cape Town. She was a partner with Andersen and EY, but prefers to work independently and in partnership with the big players for the benefit of the small emerging organizational and social leaders, who may become the new leaders of the future. She is the founder of the Footsteps Foundation and the MotherFox set of values based governance principles. She is currently working on the re-novation of selected agricultural and other value chains for the benefit of vulnerable rural and small town communities.

Dr Karin Badenhorst
Footsteps Foundation Founder
Advocate Brian Victor

A Legal, Trust and Financial Specialist, specialising in Estate & Financial Planning and Trust Law, including training of Trustees. Brian is also a part-time writer in his field of expertise, but aiming to finish that novel one day. Specialties include Estate & Financial Planning, Trust Law, Wills and Contracts.

Advocate Brian Victor
Operational Team: Legal adviser
Derek Whitehead

Derek has a tertiary qualification with Graphic Design and Marketing as a major, a Business to Business Marketing Diploma, together with constant Brand Positioning and Production experience working with a Positioning Specialist, re-aligning reputable brands. Marketing Management and Digital Communication Strategy are Derek’s key areas, with a very strong creative background. Derek has gained more than 15 years experience within the Marketing and Internet industry, with in-depth knowledge of Web Development, Broadcast Production, Telecoms and the Internet industry.

Derek Whitehead
Operational Team: Web enablement & Marketing Strategy
JD Knoblauch (Boland Secretarial Services)

J.D. grew up on a farm in the Overberg. He received a B.Acc degree and a B.Com (Hons) in Financial Management. J.D. did tax audits for SARS, gaining manufacturing experience in the steel and textile industries and has his own accounting practice for the past 17 years. His focus is on starting and assisting small business owners.

JD Knoblauch (Boland Secretarial Services)
Operational Team: Business Case & Financial Model

Strategic Partners

The Foundation also works closely with a number of Strategic partners

Dr’s Jackie James Dabrowski

We provide aquatic consulting and research services to the agricultural, industrial, mining, tourism and private sectors in South Africa and the rest of Africa and conduct specialist studies for environmental assessments as required by national and international legislation (e.g. National Water Act of 1998, National Environmental Management Act of 1998).

Dr’s Jackie James Dabrowski
Tony Frost

Tony has served as a member of the Minister of Environment Affairs Advisory Forum (NEAF), the South African Biodiversity Institute, the JSE Sustainability Index Advisory Committee, the NBI Sustainable Futures Advisory Board. Chief Executive of the WWF in South Africa for 5 years and served on several the WWF International Strategic Global Committees, the Percy Fitzpatrick Advisory Board and others.
He has published articles about organisations, leadership and management; two books entitled “After the Rain” and “Flight at Dawn” as well contributing various chapters on these subjects in other books and publications.

Tony Frost
Dr. Karin Badenhorst, Prof Robert Fincham & Stephen Stead

We believe that the development of this body of work in the form of an overarching research framework, linked to long-term SEE research monitoring and evaluation, will open a wealth of further research and study opportunities to add further value to the excellent work currently being done at the SRU

Dr. Karin Badenhorst, Prof Robert Fincham & Stephen Stead
Ferdie van Schalkwyk

ICT expertise partner to facilitate the development of the Footsteps Foundation Incubator and the enablement of digital connectivity to the SDVRCs across the Northern Cape Karoo, through a community owned network (GKN = Groot Karoo Netwerk).

Ferdie van Schalkwyk
Manager: IT and Business Solutions
Professor Doreen Atkinson

Strategic development partner to promote and facilitate resourcing of the development projects of the Footsteps Foundation.

Professor Doreen Atkinson
Trustee & Co-founder
Derek Whitehead

Jumpstarter is a new way to fund creative projects for individuals, charities and businesses. We believe that: A good idea, communicated well, can spread fast and wide. A large group of people can be a tremendous source of money and encouragement.

Derek Whitehead
Chief Operations Director
Allistair Gibbons

Karoo Hoogland is an administrative area in the Namakwa District of Northern Cape in South Africa. Hoogland an Afrikaans word meaning “highland” and Karoo is a Khoi word meaning “hard” or “dry”. The municipality incorporates the towns of Williston, Fraserburg and Sutherland. The Footsteps Foundation is working closely with the Karoo Hoogland Municipality on development projects in the region.

Allistair Gibbons
Local Economic Develpment & IDP Manager

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