WHO WE ARE
Thomas’s Foundation, a Charitable Incorporated Organisation established in 2018, is the charitable arm of Thomas’s London Day Schools.
Vision & Mission
Thomas’s Foundation is driven by the belief and vision that every child deserves an enriching education.
Thomas's Foundation delivers its vision through three core programmes:
These core programmes provide educational opportunities for children in the local communities of Thomas’s London Day Schools located in Battersea, Clapham, Fulham and Kensington and, overseas, in the remote hill villages of rural Nepal.
Kindness lies at the heart of Thomas’s Foundation, reflecting the values of Thomas’s London Day Schools and educating pupils about the importance of giving back to the community, at a local and global level.
Givers, not takers
Thomas's Foundation is committed to operating in a way which is:
Needs Driven - meeting the specific needs of its beneficiaries
Collaborative - working with
educational partners in the UK and
Nepal who have experience of need
at “grass-roots” level.
High Impact - with clear
Cost Effective - with transparent processes and clear accountability
Sustainable - empowering people
to help themselves
BEN THOMAS, Chairman
Ben is a Principal of Thomas’s London Day Schools, and Head of Thomas’s Battersea Senior School. He was educated at Eton College, Durham University and the UCL Institute of Education, London, where he gained a Master’s degree in Education.
Ben is the younger son of David and Joanna Thomas, who founded Thomas's in the 1970s. He has been a Principal of the group since 1995 and was Headmaster of Thomas's Kensington from 1995 and Thomas’s Battersea from 1999 to 2017. He is Chairman of Thomas's Foundation and Katherine Low Settlement, a community centre in Battersea. He is married to Katie. They have three children, a son and two daughters, who are all at university.
CHRIS BENSON, Trustee
Chris is a Director of Advent International, a global private equity firm. At Advent Chris invests in, and helps grow, a variety of businesses across the financial and business services sectors.
His focus with the Thomas’s Foundation is the expansion of the Bursaries programme. Chris is also a Trustee of the British Friends of Harvard Business School, which provides scholarships for British students to study at Harvard University; was formerly a Trustee of Floreat Education, which set up primary schools in West London; and of Technoserve, a global NGO which promotes business solutions to poverty in the developing world.
Chris has an MBA from Harvard Business School, where he was a Fulbright Scholar, and an MA in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from Oxford University. Chris is married to Gabriela, and has a daughter and a son.
ALISON CABOT, Trustee
Alison is the Deputy Chair of Thomas’s Foundation. Prior to this, Alison served as Chair of the Thomas’s Schools Foundation (TSF) in an executive capacity from 2011 until its merger with Thomas’s Foundation in 2019. She joined TSF in 2009 as Development Chair.
Alison also currently serves as the Chair of Governors for Ark Conway Primary Academy in London and is the Development Chair and Trustee of Waterman’s Community Center in North Haven, Maine. Prior to her educational focus, she worked in senior management in the early days of e-commerce. In 1994 Alison launched the digital presence for the New York-based publishing company Random House and in 1998 joined QXL ricardo plc, a FTSE 250, e-commerce platform, where she held various roles and most recently was Head of Investor Relations prior to QXL’s acquisition in 2008 by Naspers Ltd. Alison and her husband Chris moved to London in 1998 and have three sons who attended Thomas’s Fulham, Battersea and Clapham
CAROL CLARE, Trustee
Carol’s background is as a Certified Chartered Accountant, working for many years as Head of Accounts for Thomas’s London Day Schools. Carol has been an administrator for The CAIRN Trust since its outset in 2007 and later as a trustee, joining Thomas’s Foundation
as a trustee from when it began in 2018. Carol is also an Administrator for BRANNGO (Britain and Nepal NGO’s) which works to share information from many charities that work in Nepal and provide a platform to enhance their work.
Carol is married to Steve, has three daughters and two grandchildren.
MARK DEARLOVE, Trustee
Mark spent 35 years in the Financial Services sector retiring at the end of 2019. During his career he was based in both London and Tokyo. He is married with three children all of whom attended Thomas's Battersea. Mark is chair of the board of trustees for SMA UK. Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) is a rare, genetically inherited neuromuscular condition.
JOHN MAYNE, Trustee
John is a Managing Director at J.P.Morgan Cazenove, where he leads the investment banking relationships with a number of UK clients, and Chairs various internal risk committees. He has been at the firm for over 30 years, and previous roles include being Head of Debt Capital Markets at J.P.Morgan Cazenove and a member of the firm's Executive Committee.
John also sits on the Board of Cazenove Capital Trust (whose policy is to provide grants to charitable causes), and previously sat on the Board of Shooting Star Chase for a decade, a children’s hospice charity. He is a graduate of Oxford University.
John is married to Alison, and they have four children, two sons and two daughters, all of whom went to Thomas’s Battersea.
JOHN DEMBITZ, Trustee
John is chairman of TITUS International, Anstey Horne, Boyden UK & Ireland, FromHereOn, a non-executive director of Venquis, and Cripps Pemberton Greenish In addition to his directorships, John serves on the board of charities, undertakes mentoring/coaching and supports start-ups..
In 1975, John joined McKinsey & Co, then appointed Group Executive with Consolidated Goldfields, followed by a period as an executive director with Charterhouse Bank. In 1985, he was appointed CEO of Valin Pollen Ltd, a leading corporate and financial communications consultancy. In 1990, John and his brother built IDOM SA, a banking/IT consultancy, acquired by Deloitte & Touche in 1995/1996.
John has a BSc Hons from Manchester University and an MBA from London Business School, where he was a member of the Global Advisory Council.
SIMON O'MALLEY, Trustee
Prior to becoming Head at Thomas's Battersea in 2017, Simon was Head at Wellesley House in Kent for eleven years. Before that he was Deputy Head at Beaudesert Park in Gloucestershire, Head of English at Newland House in Twickenham and taught for seven years at the Banda School, Nairobi.
Simon was educated at The Oratory School and Aberdeen University where he read English Literature and Language before taking his PGCE at Westminster College Oxford.
Simon is a governor at Bradfield College and previously at Sandroyd School in Wiltshire. He is married to Katy. They have two children, Laragh and Robert, both of whom attended Uppingham School and have graduated from Bristol and Exeter Universities respectively.
KRISTA POUND, Trustee
Krista spent her career as an accountant working for an international accountancy firm in Chicago, New York and London. She is a mother of twin boys and is Chair of Trustees for Twins Trust, supporting families of twins, triplets and more. She has also been a school governor for several schools as the financial specialist and is a supporter of the Royal Foundation of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. Her focus with the Thomas’s Foundation is on Community Partnerships and Fundraising.
BUNMI RICHARDS, Trustee
Bunmi Is married with two children. She is the headteacher of an award-winning, community primary school in Battersea. It is the first school in the UK to be awarded the prestigious LabelfrancEducation, granted to schools outside France offering a bilingual curriculum of extremely high quality. Bunmi has 17 years of headship experience. She is the headteacher representative on the Wandsworth Virtual School Management Board which has the responsibility of ensuring that some of the most vulnerable children reach their full potential.
SUSANA WHITE, Trustee
Mrs White is a financial services professional with 21 years’ experience as risk, compliance management and corporate governance expert.
She has been in charge of the philanthropic effort at Barclays Bank and led award winning fundraising campaigns for causes within their ESG agenda at the time
As a NED, she sits in the Advisory Board of RequirementOne, a RegTech operating from Level 39 introducing AI into risk and compliance management -as well as- financial crime prevention.
Since 2015, she serves as a Trustee and Chairwoman of the Risk, Governance and Compliance Committee (2nd tenure) of the Children’s Surgery Foundation (formerly the Chelsea Children’s Hospital Charity, based at the Chelsea and Westminster NHS Trust on the Fulham Road)
Additionally, to her responsibilities as chairman of the risk related committee, Susana contributes her expertise in the following areas:
Fundraising and corporate grant giving
Mrs White is married with 2 children and lives in London.
Some interesting facts:
The Chelsea Children’s Hospital reaches the same geographical community that Thomas’s Foundation aims to serve in London
The Chelsea Children’s Hospital Charity was the recipient of the Thomas’s Fulham fundraising efforts in 2017 under the PTA-driven Charity of the Year (COTY) scheme
Many children have been operated by Pluto, the minimally invasive Da Vince type robot that the Foundation donated to the hospital and the Thomas’s kindly contributed to (this is the only one that exists in London exclusively dedicated to children)
-Both Thomas’s and the Children’s Surgery Foundations aim to raise funds to support education. In the case of the Children’s Surgery Foundation- this is done in collaboration with the British Association of Pediatric Surgeons- and provide bursaries for doctors to further their specialist studies