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Sonja Starling

Executive Director Innovation Edge and Acting Program Leader Ilifa Labantwana,South Africa

Sonja Giese is director of the Innovation Edge, a new multi-donor initiative aimed at promoting innovation in early learning in South Africa. The Edge offers a platform for testing the feasibility and effectiveness of Bold Ideas that can fundamentally change early life experiences for children, and promote their optimum development. Over the past 20 years, She has been involved in a number of start-up ventures in the development space, including the establishment of an HIV/AIDS research and policy program at the Children's Institute (UCT), a Child Services program for an international donor agency, Absolute Return for Kids (ARK) and several community-based rural development projects through a local NGO, the Bulungula Incubator. Immediately prior to taking on the directorship of the Innovation Edge, She spent 9 years consulting on a range of child-rights issues and promoting the development of systems necessary to enable service delivery at scale. She holds a BSc (Hons) from the University of Cape Town.