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HEETEN KANTI KALAN

New World Foundation and South Africa Development Fund

Heeten is a Senior Program Officer & Director of the Climate Action Fund at the New World Foundation in New York where he oversees the foundation’s grantmaking on the intersection of climate, civic engagement, and human rights. Having grown up in apartheid South Africa, Heeten was active in the anti-apartheid movement and US divestment movement and went on to work closely with South African environmental justice organizations since the fall of the apartheid regime. Much of his work focuses on heightening awareness of the links between the environment and all aspects of health, and the broader socio-economic consequences of unjust economic and environmental policies. He also has many years of experience working on human rights issues in Northern Ireland witnessing first hand some of the bloody Orange marches of Drumcree along with elements of the peace process. He is regularly asked to talk to school and university audiences about growing up in South Africa, and the inter-play of race & class in the US and South Africa. He currently Chairs the Board of the South Africa Development Fund in Boston which focuses on funding grassroots groups taking on government accountability and pursuing self-empowerment. He is also licensed safari and back-up trails guide certified to guide in the Greater Kruger area of South Africa. 

Find Heeten on Twitter at: @heetenkalan