Sudarshan Bhuhi MBE
Founder and CEO
Aanchal was founded by Su in 1984. At the time she was working as an administrative assistant for Community Links, an East London charity that helps disadvantaged local people. One fateful day a woman, who had been the subject of domestic abuse, arrived at the offices of the charity. She had left her husband and was looking for a way to protect her child. Having had a most painful experience herself, Su felt compelled to step in. In an experience that she describes as "surreal" she found herself in court later that day applying for an injunction to protect the woman and her child. "I knew nothing about court proceedings," says Su "but it made me determined to find out more about how I could help other women in the same position. I did not want to sit back and let society continue treating women as it has done for centuries."
Su has come a long way. Since the creation of Aanchal (originally called Apna Ghar and renamed Aanchal in 2005) the organisation has provided support and assistance to about 14,000 women and children. In recognition of her enormous contribution to society, Su was awarded an MBE in 2006. In October 2008, she was awarded an Honorary Fellowship by the University of East London and a 'Sikh Woman of Distinction' Award from the Sikh Women's Alliance UK in 2007. She also received a national Council for Racial Equality Award in 1995 for pioneering services.
Chair on the Board of Directors for Aanchal
While Madhu was working at Barclays Capital (Aanchal biggest corporate sponsor), she helped Barcap develop a long-term 'pilot' relationship programme with Aanchal. Barcap aims to build deeper partnerships with charitable organisations by genuinely supporting them with private sector expertise and not just funding.
As an Asian woman, and having personally gone through the process of integration in the West, Madhu felt an affinity for Aanchal. "I signed on after meeting with Su as I was so impressed by her dedication." In 2005 Madhu played a key role in taking Apna Ghar from being a "project" under the wing of Community Links to an independent organisation. Her formidable business background proved invaluable as she supported Aanchal through its initial fledgling years, helping it to become a stable, independent charity with a forward-looking vision and a diverse fund raising strategy.
Madhu currently lives in New York and is at present on a sabbatical from work. In her most recent job she worked for Booz & Co, a leading management consulting firm. As a Principal, she worked with clients in the service sector industries to help define and service their customer needs and experience and build operational excellence. She graduated from the University of Sydney with a Bachelor of Arts (Honours in Economics) and has completed an MBA from Yale.
Margaretha van der Schyf
Trustee and Treasurer
Margaretha van der Schyf, who has a senior role within Barclays Capital, first became involved with Aanchal in 2005 when she acted as legal advisor to Aanchal when it changed its legal status from charitable "project" to fully independent legal entity.
As a trained barrister, Retha has always held strong views about the protection of those that need it and was impressed by the mammoth task that Aanchal had undertaken.
Retha is currently the COO of Barclays Capital Legal. She graduated from Stellenbosch University, South Africa, with a B.Comm (Law) and a LLB degree. She is also a MBA graduate from London Business School.