Geraldine Moodley is the Director of the Wits Justice Project, having joined the team in 2016. She has a diverse background which spans three continents and over 15 years of experience in NGO operations, programme management, campaigns and advocacy work. Previously, Geraldine worked in the Directorate at the operational centre of Medecins Sans Frontieres Holland (MSF), assisted with the launch of MSF South Africa office, launched a campaign with ECPAT on child trafficking, and was the Regional Representative for The Australian Red Cross operations in Southern Africa. Geraldine was also the operations manager for Nelson Mandela’s 46664 Campaign, integrating donor funding with programmes and grantees. Geraldine is a lawyer, trained in Public International law including Human Rights and humanitarian law, and is passionate about making a tangible change to the lives of others through advocacy on human rights issues, access to justice and reform initiatives.
Carolyn Raphaely is a senior journalist at the Wits Justice Project. Carolyn’s professional career and personal interests have always been informed by an insatiable curiosity and a desire to improve the way we live. With a psychology and drama degree, a Masters in City and Regional Planning, stints as associate editor of the Financial Mail, features editor of Finance Week, Johannesburg bureau chief of Cosmopolitan magazine and communications manager of Conservation Corporation Africa under her belt, she brings a maverick approach to the Wits Justice Project. Raphaely cut her journalistic teeth exposing the pitiful conditions experienced by migrant workers living in employer-provided housing in the Western Cape. Subsequently, she’s written extensively about socio-political, human rights and lifestyle issues, housing, business and the environment. She’s also written about travel, décor, design and architecture as a freelancer and spent lengthy periods in some of Africa’s most wild and wonderful places. Right now, she’s obsessed with righting wrongs in SA’s justice system by drawing attention to the mostly ignored plight of people behind bars. Carolyn was named print Legal Journalist of the Year by Webber Wentzel in 2011 and runner up in 2012 and 2015. She was Standard Bank Sikuvile Journalism Award finalist in 2013 and 2014.
Ruth Hopkins is a senior journalist with the Wits Justice Project. Ruth wrote a book on trafficking in women in/to Europe, which was published in 2005 (Ik laat je nooit meer gaan, I will never let you go again), based on five years of research in Albania, Bulgaria, Ukraine and the Netherlands. In addition to her journalistic work, Ruth set up and taught a human rights course at a journalism college in the Netherlands. She is currently finishing her first novel about ‘Magdalene women’ who were incarcerated in convents in Ireland because they were perceived as a ‘moral danger to society’. Ruth was named print Legal Journalist of the Year by Webber Wentzel 2011 2014.
Simonia Mashangoane is the programme officer at the Wits Justice Project. She has over 8 years civil society experience doing, monitoring and evaluation, research, advocacy and programme coordination at community and national level. She began her career as a part-time research assistant in various community development projects, which is where her passion for human rights work was born. She has worked for a number of social movements in South Africa advocating for access to health care services. Simonia hopes to merge her passion for citizen participation and state accountability with her studies in Economics and Development.
Marché Arends is a journalism intern at the Wits Justice Project. She holds a BA in Print Journalism Production from the University of Cape Town and a postgrad in Creative Writing Programme from Wits. She spent three years living in Southeast Asia where she worked with community-based organisations, humanitarian NGOs and freelanced as a travel journalist. Marché is passionate about using the written word as a tool for positive social change, and has a particular interest in marrying the worlds of journalism and human rights. She hopes to hone her investigative reporting skills during her time at the WJP.
Keletso Motene is a legal assistant at the Wits Justice Project. She completed her LLB Degree at North-West University in 2015 and is currently pursuing a Postgraduate Diploma in Law at the University of The Witwatersrand (Wits). Prior to joining the WJP Keletso served as the Public Relations Director for Golden Key International Honour Society and is now also a member of the Students for Law and Social Justice (SLSJ), Wits Chapter. During her time at the WJP Keletso hopes to engage in advocacy to gain insight on critical issues facing the South African criminal