TSAFF – Exploring the Culture, History & Politics of South Africa

The Toronto South African Film Festival is proud to present features and documentaries that explore the culture, history and politics of South Africa – films that both entertain and inform.

South Africa, with its diverse population, rich tradition of struggle for democracy and equity, and complex political and economic reality, has produced outstanding cinema. The films you will see at TSAFF are among the best.

We believe that TSAFF is the second most significant festival of South African films held anywhere outside of South Africa. We are inspired by our partners in Vancouver who have run the Vancouver South African Film Festival (VSAFF) for several incredible years.

In Support of Education without Borders

Education without Borders

TSAFF is a non-profit event organized entirely by volunteers. Like VSAFF, all proceeds from the festival go to supporting the important educational development work Education without Borders has been doing in South Africa since 2002.

2017 TSAFF Planning Committee

Vanessa Judelman – Co-Chair & Festival Director

In her volunteer position as Co-Chair for TSAFF, Vanessa is able to combine two of her passions – film and education. Vanessa is inspired by the vision of Education without Borders and is honoured to be part of the team working hard to raise money for children in disadvantaged regions of the world. Vanessa immigrated to Toronto from Johannesburg as a child yet still enjoys eating Chocolate Logs and Chappies with her two kids born and bred in Toronto. In the muggle world, Vanessa is President of Mosaic People Development where she provides both training and coaching programs for leaders in the corporate world.

Neha Kotak – Co-Chair & Director, Finance & Sponsorships

Passionate about education, children and international work, Neha is excited to volunteer at TSAFF and help raise funds to support Education without Borders’ vision. Relocating from India in 2002 and having worked closely with the academic institutions, she strongly appreciates and believes in the role of education in true empowerment of children. As a Management Consultant and Executive Coach, Neha provides Talent Management and People Strategy advisory services to her national and international clients.

Shannon Cumming – Director, Films Management & Festival Operations

As an operations professional in the aerospace industry, and with her event management experience as a member of RAG at the University of Cape Town, Shannon was drawn to get involved with the festival operations of TSAFF. Since arriving in Canada in 2011, she has remained an advocate for everything South African, which includes convincing Canadian friends to wake up in the early hours of the morning to watch rugby games. She has previously volunteered at VSAFF and is now hoping to make even more of an impact at TSAFF.

Lara van Niekerk – Director Festival Management & Silent Auction

As an expatriate in Ghana, Lara was the coordinator of a scholarship program among other initiatives. This is where her passion in fundraising, specifically for causes that provide education opportunities for underprivileged children started. Upon moving to Toronto, she joined TSAFF in support of Education without Borders and in 2015 volunteered as project manager. Currently working in Immigration Law at Deloitte Canada, she has a global mindset with a love for South Africa and looks forward to enjoying TSAFF with you.

Julian Parr – Director, Marketing & Digital

A recent arrival in Toronto from South Africa, Julian is passionate about marketing, technology and people. He launched Startup Weekend Cape Town, a non-profit that teaches people how to start and run their own businesses. It was this experience that sparked his interest in TSAFF, which helps create a way for him to give back to both South African and Canadian communities. In his spare time, he loves to explore the beautiful parts of Ontario on his bicycle.

Sayurie Naidoo – Director, Communications & Outreach

Sayurie is a South African-born, Toronto-raised communications professional with a background in the entertainment, media, government and healthcare sectors. She is passionate about making a difference both in her local community and worldwide – with a special place in her heart for all things South African. She has been a member of the TSAFF organizing committee since it’s inaugural event in 2014.

Michael Howe-Ely – Manager, Digital Marketing

Born in Port Elizabeth and growing up in Cape Town, Michael has a background in film and digital marketing. Michael became part of the TSAFF to help enhance its website and online presence.