Meet Our Family

Lisa Ashton MBE


Lisa Ashton MBE is the founder and CEO of The Winnie Mabaso Foundation. She worked in the broadcast industry for almost 25 years before running the Foundation fulltime in 2013. 

Lisa has recently been featured in Dan Walker’s books “Remarkable People” and “Standing On the Shoulders”.  

She continues to spend her life travelling between the UK and South Africa.  Lisa lives in Glossop, Derbyshire with her husband Steve and daughter Charlotte.

lisa ashton mbe, founder of the winnie mabaso foundation

Team Mabaso

Team Mabaso is made up of over 50 staff members from Social Workers and Caregivers, Security and Drivers, Maintenance, Administrative Staff, Pre-School Teachers, Housekeepers, Cooks, Gardeners and Project Workers.  All are qualified and highly experienced.  We are proud of Team Mabaso!

team mabaso

Our Patrons

oti mabuse, tv personality and latin dance champion, patron of the winnie mabaso foundation

Oti Mabuse


We are delighted to welcome dance champion and TV personality as a Patron of The Winnie Mabaso Foundation.
Oti has been a supporter of the Foundation for many years and has helped to raise our profile by choosing us to benefit from various TV appearances and quizzes such as “Celebrity Catch Phrase” and “Your Face or Mine”.  Oti has spent time in person with our Mabaso family in South Africa and virtually during lock down and we are so grateful for all she does for us.
jonathan edwards cbe, former british triple jump and olympic, commonwealth, european and world champion, patron of the winnie mabaso foundation

Jonathan Edwards CBE


“I had the privilege of meeting Winnie Mabaso when I was presenting a programme for the BBC in 2004. Winnie’s commitment to the children of her township moved me. Her dedication involved her getting up every morning at a ridiculously early hour to cook and provide a hot meal for children who otherwise would have nothing.

During our filming I was able to assist Winnie in her daily chores. The image of the children waiting to receive their food in little plastic bowls will stay with me forever. I’m proud to be a Patron of The Winnie Mabaso Foundation and to see Winnie’s legacy of love living on.”

david morrissey ENGLISH ACTOR, DIRECTOR, PRODUCER AND SCREENWRITER and patron of the winnie mabaso foundation

David Morrissey


David Morrissey joined the Foundation as a Trustee in 2013.

“I am delighted to be a Patron of the Winnie Mabaso Foundation. Having visited the home in Finetown and met many of the staff and children there I was inspired by the work that Lisa Ashton and her team are doing. It’s an essential facility for the community. A place of safety and support, not just to the children themselves but to the wider community as a whole.

The importance of this place of refuge cannot be overstated.”

Our Ambassadors

Aled Jones MBE


“I am honoured to be an ambassador for this amazing charity who I have long since supported.

Seeing the difference they are making in the community where they are based inspires me and I am over the moon to support them in this way.”

aled jones, singer and broadcaster and ambassador of the winnie mabaso foundation

Emma Jeffcoat


Emma Jeffcoat, is an Elite Australian Professional Triathlete.  Emma lives in Sydney but gets to travel all over the world training & racing in the sport that she loves.  She represented Australia in the Tokoyo Olympics.  Emma visited Ilamula House in South Africa and says…

“I was left so touched by the inspiring love & courage of all involved in helping change the lives of others. I am so excited to officially be able to be a part of such a wonderful big family.”


Emma Jeffcoat, Australian Professional Athlete, Ambassador of The Winnie Mabaso Foundation

Our Trustees

sarah newton bingham, chair of the board of trustees, the winnie mabaso foundation

Sarah Newton Bingham


From the moment I met Lisa on the first school sports tour to Ilamula House, something grabbed my heart and I knew this was a charity I wanted to be involved in. Now, 8 years on, as the Chair of the board of trustees, I can honestly say that it is a huge honour and privilege to be part of how this incredible charity is growing and to have seen how we’ve evolved as a group.

With the girls’ best interests, well-being and futures at the core of everything we do, the trustees are an incredible group who all bring so much passion, understanding, skill and commitment to every meeting and I love being part of the conversations and decisions that are having such a positive impact on lives that otherwise could have gone in such a different direction. The WMF has my heart, and always will. Mabaso love forever.

mluleki shongwe, trustee of the winnie mabaso foundation

Mluleki Shongwe

Mluleki Shongwe (Mlu) was inspired by the story of Winnie Mabaso and the work done by the Foundation and got involved in assisting the Winnie Mabaso Foundation since 2014. He is invested in ensuring that the beneficiaries get access to good quality education and learning opportunities.

Upon visiting Ilamula and Meriting, Mlu was impressed with the investment the Foundation is making in the sustainable agricultural projects, the initiatives aimed at improving social compact and investment in women and children. For Mlu, the opportunity to serve as a Trustee is a way to serve the community, to give back and to influence the lives of the future generation (particularly those with disadvantaged backgrounds). 

mpho maponya, trustee of the winnie mabaso foundation

Mpho Maponya

The Winnie Mabaso Foundation has become such a big part of my and my family’s life. I got introduced to the organisation in 2014 & it has been a life changing journey. The experience has provided many teaching moments for me and an opportunity to lend a helping hand for the greater good. It is a privilege to keep Winnie’s dream alive.

claire diggle, treasurer of the winnie mabaso foundation

Clair Diggle


Whilst running my accountancy practice based in Glossop, Derbyshire, I began to work closely with the CEO, Lisa Ashton and the Winnie Mabaso Foundation back in 2015 as their independent examiner, ever since then my bond with the Charity has been ever growingly stronger. I have been hooked on the passion and the determination from the team both in South Africa and here in the UK.

I am now delighted to say that I have become the Treasurer for WMF and am excited to get more and more involved with all aspects of the Charity. I’ve been involved in several fundraising activities thus far and several trips to South Africa. The Winnie Mabaso foundation is more than just a charity, it’s a family and it quickly became part of my extended family and I couldn’t imagine life without Mabaso love in it.

phemelo mitchell, trustee of the winnie mabaso foundation

Phemelo Mitchell

Phemelo is the sister of our Patron Oti Mabuse and resides in South Africa. Phemelo has extensive experience in the energy sector as an Engineering Professional in the fields of Project Management, Engineering Procurement and Construction, with additional experience in the manufacturing sector.

Phemelo serves on numerous boards and participates in various fundraising projects raising funds for women and children.  Phemelo has enjoyed visits to Ilamula House and is building relationships with our girls and the community.

millicent jones, trustee of the winnie mabaso foundation

Millicent Jones

First and foremost I would like to express my gratitude at being part of such a dynamic team. It is an honour and a privilege for me. The Winnie Mabaso Foundation was first “introduced ” to me when the 1st cohort of girls were enrolled at a local school, where I am a member of the staff. I have a fantastic working relationship with the caregivers of the WMF, and the girls are delightful.

After some years, I met the dynamic, passionate, wonderful and most caring lady, Lisa Ashton MBE. I was enthralled by her amazing spirit.  It was like meeting a friend. Lisa is the epitome of kindness. I was in awe when Lisa related the story of the remarkable Winnie Mabaso, and how she (Lisa) started the WMF. I am excited and raring to go. Mabaso love to all!

charlotte hindle, trustee of the winnie mabaso foundation

Charlotte Hindle (Millar)

I feel very privileged to have been with Lisa from the start. I remember her coming back from South Africa and telling me all about this extraordinary woman she’d met called Winnie Mabaso, and her desire to help her in some way. I could never have imagined how that small seed of an idea could have turned into the Foundation we see today.

It’s an honour to be a trustee and I was thrilled to visit Ilamula and Meriting to see in person the life changing work that goes on and to experience Mabaso love in action. 

trish williams, trustee of the winnie mabaso foundation

Trish Williams

My skills lie in Event and Conference Management as well as Executive Assistant experience. I have worked in the Accounting and Financial Services Industry. I was fortunate enough to meet Winnie around 2004 and was immediately touched and moved by her dedication to her community and particularly to the children she started taking under her wing when they became orphaned. The company I worked for at the time held a charity golf day in support of Winnie and she attended the prize giving of this very successful day. Sadly, she passed away a few months later and it was shortly after this that I was honoured and privileged to meet Lisa Ashton where we found we were both dedicated to honour Winnie’s memory and continue her legacy.

I have watched as Lisa has tirelessly devoted her time and love to the Foundation and have assisted wherever I can. They say home is where the heart is. And I have truly found my home at The Winnie Mabaso Foundation. Watching Lisa grow Winnie’s dream and embrace so many aspects of the community has been truly inspiring. It is a real privilege to be on the Board of Trustees and work alongside the wonderful colleagues I can call family, and a charity I call home. Mabaso Love.