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Helen Lieberman

Shocked by the poverty of South Africa during the worst years of apartheid, Helen Lieberman founded Ikamva Labantu (Future of Our Nation) to offer black South Africans access to education and social services. Lieberman trained as a speech therapist at the University of Cape Town, graduating in 1962, and began working in Cape Town. In 1963, while visiting a patient, she was horrified by the squalor in which the black community lived. She began working to create centers for the disabled and elderly, daycare for preschoolers, business initiatives for working adults, and placements for orphans. Together with her partners in the community, she formally founded Ikamva Labantu in 1992 and after the end of apartheid in 1993 she helped expand the organization’s programs to multipurpose service centers for children, youth, and adults to empower the most vulnerable populations. As of 2015, Lieberman still works for the organization, where she serves as a board member and honorary president.

Helen Lieberman is a grantee of the Jewish Women’s Foundation of New York (JWFNY), and is featured as part of a partnership between JWA and JWFNY spotlighting Jewish women social entrepreneurs.

Topics: Volunteers

More on Helen Lieberman


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Dear Mrs Liebermann, I just read a book about SA and Iám ashamed for what the Dutch related people did in SA.
But you can be proud for all the thinks you have done for the black people in SA, risking your life.
I was a ships engineer for many years and sailed with Bantoes from Durban so I'm very interessed in the history of SA.
Many Regards from Piet Roelse, from Holland.
PS sorry about my bad English

Shalom Helen!   would love to meet with you and discuss a project with Afrika Tikkun.

Best regards



Helen Lieberman.

Courtesy of Helen Lieberman.

Date of Birth

Cape Town
South Africa

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Helen Lieberman." (Viewed on November 27, 2020) <https://jwa.org/people/lieberman-helen>.


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