The MAMA Youth Project team are all very special. We are always on the other end of the phone for any questions you might have and we love hearing from you! Here is a run down of some key people you can expect to meet – and learn from:
Bob Clarke, Founder and CEO
Bob has been a professional editor for over twenty years, and personally funded the first two years of MAMA Youth Project’s operation. Bob started his television career in 1982 as a Video Tape Operator for Humphries Video Services. He went on to join The Services Sound & Vision Corporation in 1987 where he cut his teeth as an editor on different types of programming including light entertainment, news and documentaries. Following BBC training, Bob became a freelance editor and worked at various facilities in Soho, before setting up his own – bcPost.
In 1996 Bob took this facility to the next level by purchasing his first Avid Media Composer, which attracted clients such as the BBC, Endemol, Ginger Productions and Tiger Aspect. Then, in September 2005, MAMA Productions funded an experiment and recruited young adults to make an entertainment show called ‘What’s Up’. This experiment proved so successful, it led to the formation of the MAMA Youth Project. In 2008, Bob decided to put all future commissions through the MAMA Youth Project, using talented newcomers who had worked on ‘What’s Up’. This enterprise became very successful and turned over 45,000 in 3 months. However, due to the legal limitations of a charity earning income, Licklemor Productions had to be formed – which is now MAMA Youth Project’s commercial arm.
On a personal level, Bobs great strengths are his creativity, adaptability and ability to understand what a client wants. He is also quick to recognise new talent and give them the opportunities they need.
Lendon Lumsden, Director of Finance and Strategy
Lendon is a professional and experienced manager who has worked in the public sector through social regeneration projects and education as well as the creative industries. He has knowledge and understanding of the private sector where he worked for many years as the marketing manager for the Ethnic Media Group. Lendon has set up and managed his own companies and brands that have competed commercially within the events industry, allowing him to work with an eclectic mix of performers from the late great James Brown to the dance hall queen Lady Saw.
He has produced shows for audiences of over 30,000 with outdoor festivals and week end breaks that have attracted capacity audiences to UK institutions, such as Butlins and Pontins. He has also organised balls and conferences with special guests, such as heavy weight champion Lennox Lewis, and project managed events such as the Black International Comedy Awards and Live at the Apollo.
More recently Lendon has been sharing his experiences to help develop young people who have aspirations to improve their lives and make positive contributions in the communities where they live. Working at MYP Lendon has been able to bring all his experiences together helping to develop young people and to help grow the project started by Bob Clarke.
Anca Dimofte, Producer of “What’s Up” show
Anca joined MAMA Youth Project in 2010 as a trainee researcher and has since worked as researcher at Shed Media and Naked Eye Research, as well as self-shooting for a recent documentary for BBC Storyville. Anca has also worked as an independent filmmaker specialising in short documentaries uncovering individuals or groups that one wouldn’t normally have a chance to get to know and understand.
Anca now coordinates the day-to-day TV production training at MYP and works creatively with the trainees to produce ‘What’s Up’ for BSkyB. Along with the Head of Training and Bob, she is also involved in developing the training modules and finding job opportunities for trainees after the MYP training is completed.
Anca has a MA in Documentary Filmmaking from Royal Holloway University, as well as a BA Law from The American University in Bucharest and a BA in Commerce & Economics from University of Bucharest.
Cristina Ciobanu, Associate Producer of “What’s Up” show
As Production Assistant for What’s Up Show, Cristina works with both the Executive Producer Bob Clarke and the production team responsible for creating all new episodes. Cristina oversees the logistics of the production as well as contributing to idea development, directing and final cut.
During her time at What’s Up, Cristina took control over social media platforms and she works with a small team to revamp, administrate and structure the online presence of the show.
Since Cristina first started with MAMA Youth Project in April 2013 she took part in the recruitment process as well as in the training itself. Cristina studied for her Journalism and Social Communication BA in Romania and Norway and worked as a news reporter time when she developed her passion for video production. Cristina completed her MA in Film and Video Production at West London University. She speaks 3 languages and lived and travelled to 5 countries across 2 continents.
Her closest goal: to produce a successful documentary.
Caroline Clarke, Project Coordinator and PA to Bob Clarke
Caroline worked in the broadcast industry as a Librarian initially with Humphries Video Services back in the eighties. After being there for 5 years she decided to up root and go and work for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation in Sydney, as a Librarian Researcher. On returning back to the UK, Caroline quickly found a permanent position at Visnews as a Librarian and Archive Researcher, and then from there went to Post Production at BBC Television Centre.
After bringing up two boys and many years of voluntary work including supporting families of offenders, Caroline joined MAMA Youth Project in April 2013, as Project Coordinator. It has been fitting that Caroline has been able to join the charity as she has been involved personally and financially as the wife of our CEO, Bob Clarke.
Mariana Magnavita, Training Coordinator
Mariana has spent the last three years dedicating herself exclusively to her music but before choosing a musical career, she gained a BA in Film & Video at the prestigious London College of Communication. Her graduation short film Ana (2004), filmed in the backlands of Bahia-Brazil, was nominated for ‘best short’ at the Birds Eye View Film Festival, the main English festival for films directed by women. Mariana also project managed her own music videos in 2010 for White and 2011 for We Walk Alone, using her expertise and connections in the audio visual arena. We Walk Alone won best music video at The Indie Gathering International Film Festival 2011. Her most recent work was the music video for her song Things That Go Around 2013, it won special mention at The London Short Film Festival 2014, in the Music & Video category. Mariana enjoys working at MAMA Youth Project, bringing her passion for working with media and young people to her role within the charity.
Michele Lonergan, Finance Manager
Currently working in social media Michele has spent her professional life between finance and television production. Qualifying as a Chartered Accountant in 1991 Michele has also been a line producer for many mainstream entertainment shows, raised film finance for British movies and taken the financial and production reins for an internationally self distributing UK production company.
Meet the members of the board:
Monica Hartwell, Chair
After a long stint in the Bank of England (1966-1982) followed a radical new direction to pursue an interest in the Not-for-Profit sector. First gaining a 2:1 BA Hons. in Social Policy & Administration at the University of York (1983-1986), worked with Age Concern, Lewisham (1987/88), Muscular Dystrophy Group (now Muscular Dystrophy Campaign) 1988-1995), Winged Fellowship Trust (now Vitalise) (1995-1998), Contact the Elderly,retiring from which as Director in September 2004.
Since then has been a freelance consultant, working in the not-for profit sector, with local, regional and national charities, providing help in developing and implementing business and funding strategies, researching and making applications to trusts/other grant-making bodies; also facilitation services, helping clients with governance issues, and mentoring staff at various levels, but especially lonely CEOs of small charities! Trustee of MYP since 2011; also Trustee of High Hopes for Children & Co-opted member of Livability’s Fundraising & Community Engagement Committee.
Melissa has worked in television for 13 years. After finishing a business studies and tv & film degree at Brunel university, she started her television career as a runner for TSI, a post production company in Covent Garden. She then moved to the BBC, working on live television as an autocue operator and then joined Sky in 2000 where she worked her way up to being an editor. Melissa currently works on a variety of entertainment and sport shows at Sky. She has been an editor for nearly 10- years and very much enjoys volunteering at MAMA Youth Project as a trainer.
Alina Dimofte, Public Relations
From 2002 to current: SKY TV Technical Director for many high profile TV shows. Sal has been in the television industry since 1987. He has worked in many different TV fields including camera, editing, sound dubbing and production. Since 2006, he co-led a volunteering project (creaTV) which engaged SKY colleagues with community programming. Previous work: Technical Manager for Family Affairs’ – a long running soap for Channel- 5, HDS Studios – Channel 4 programmes for the Black Christmas on 4″ series. BBC World Service – REUTERS – SUPERCHANNEL (now NBC) VIDEOMUSIC – VISNEWS -