A brief history of 1to1:

1to1 began in 2010 when a group of students from a South African university were given an opportunity to work with the residents and leadership of Slovo Park, the Slovo Park Development Forum, as part of their masters in architecture programme.

During the initial project of co-designing and co-building a small tactical intervention in Slovo Park, the Slovo Hall, the group were exposed to another way of working and city-making, as people first then as practitioners – they sought to grow this additional mode of practice into something that could support similar projects while creating a platform for engagement with other stakeholders and students. This initial student group went on to develop the 1to1 Student Group into 1to1 – Agency of Engagement and register the organisation in 2012 as legal entity.

A new direction

Since 2010, 1to1 has grown, reflected and adapted through a shift in our operating model from a sole civic/academic entity into a more hybrid social enterprise. Supported by the Ashoka Social Entrepreneurship Network and our tactical collaborators (Architecture Sans-Frontieres-UK & the University of Johannesburg’s Faculty of Art, Design & Architecture) the organisation has changed and pivoted as the original founders and collaborators have grown to understand and learn how to tactically and systemically address Spatial Inequality in South Africa in a more resilient and sustainable manner.

We have re-branded 1to1 to reflect our new approach, leadership and structuring of the organisation and will be adopting a brand new logo designed in-house:

1to1 Logo re-design by Suzette van Der Walt (original by Yolandi Vorster)

We have moved from our home at The Point and moved into the Maths Centre at 28 Juta Street in Braamofntein, where we share offices with a range of NGO’s and civil practitioner groups. Braamfontein is a very special part of Johannesburg and we are proud to be a part of this dynamic neighborhood.

Maths Centre, 28 Juta Street, Braamfontein, Johannesburg

Of the big changes; we say goodbye to Jhono Bennett as our leading director of 1to1, as he will be pursing his doctoral studies (while supporting 1to1 as an advisor) and welcome back Jacqueline Cuyler (1to1 co-founder and co-director) to take up the leadership role for the organisation. Jacqui will be guiding 1to1 towards a more grounded, and focused approach to our social impact goals and bringing on board her wealth of experience her work in the Congo and across Southern Africa.

Jacqueline (Casson) Cuyler: our new Organisation Lead for 1to1

1to1 will be adapting the organization more closely into a social enterprise venture, and will be shifting many of our practices structures to achieve this, in support of this goal we have completely reformed our Advisory Board and welcome our new board to our team:


Dumisani Mathebula

Socio-Technical Practitioner

Mduduzi Ntongana

Socio-Technical Practitioner


Dr. Geci Karuri-Sebina is a Johannesburg-based scholar-practitioner who mainly works on urban planning and governance issues. She is currently currently an Associate of South African Cities Network, Visiting Research Fellow with the Wits School of Governance, and National Organiser of the Civic Tech Innovation Network in South Africa. She is also a Global Faculty member of Singularity University. Geci’s experience and interests span a range of development foresight, policy, innovation and practice topics, particularly relating to cities and local systems. She has two decades’ experience working and publishing in these fields.

Aditya Kumar is the Executive Director of DAG. Previously, Adi worked as the Deputy Director at Community Organisation Resource Centre. Over the last fifteen years, he has worked on post disaster, post conflict and informal settlement upgrading across the world. His practice focuses on inter-sectoral partnerships, strengthening community action and housing policy.

Lebogang Luvuno A passion for transformation and socio-economic development has led Lebogang to work with a range of companies from large multi-nationals to smaller local companies (first as an employee and then as a consultant). Lebogang also has experience in the NPO sector, having been involved in several projects that focused primarily on youth development over the past fifteen years. Lebogang’s company, Motopi Consulting, has impacted 2 million lives in its 8 years of operation

Jhono Bennett is a co-founder of 1to1 and is currently enrolled at the Bartlett School of Architecture as a doctoral candidate in the TACK / Communities of Tacit Knowledge: Architecture and its Ways of Knowing network. In addition, Jhono is an Ashoka Social Entrepreneurship Fellow as well as an Alumni of the Mandela Washington Young (MWF) African Leadership Initiative (YALI) Fellowship. Jhono led 1to1 in its first iteration as a non-profit entity from 2012-2019, and now supports the organisation as an advisor.


1to1 has grown from a small student based group in 2010, into an adaptive, collaborative and resilient social-enterprise that will continue to work towards its social impact goals of supporting the positive change in how South African cities are seen, made and managed through our guiding founding principles of criticalityconstructivity & empathy.

Watch this space 😉