Team Freiburg

Our charity is based in Freiburg im Breisgau. Eight permanent employees, some of whom work part-time, are responsible for the management, development and coordination of our aid projects, fundraising, communication and donor support.

Ulrike Claassens, Philip Hehn, Femke van Praagh, Stefan Rivald, Andrea Weiberg, Alexander Gross, Nicole Reinbold (left to right, missing: Stefanie Huter)
Your contact
Alexander Gross
Managing director
+49 761 137976-18
Ulrike Claassens
Donor communications / project supervision
+49 761 137976-11
Philip Hehn
Project support
+49 761 137976-0
Stefanie Huter
Project information
Femke van Praagh
Corporate donors
+49 761 137976-0
Nicole Reinbold
Institutional donors
+49 761 137976-14
Stefan Rivald
Project development
+49 761 137976-0
Andrea Weiberg
Communications / projects
+49 761 137976-15
Association organs


The executive board of the Deutsche Cleft Kinderhilfe consists of two honorary members – Prof. Dr. med. Feyerherd as CEO and Tom Schneider in the role of assessor. Alexander Gross is the third member of the board and also full-time managing director of the association. The executive board and the managing director periodically brief the board of directors on finance, personnel and project development.
Prof. Dr. med. Frank Feyerherd
Frank Feyerherd was an anesthetist at the Greifswald University Clinic until his retirement and is now working in a private clinic. He led our Cameroon project in Ngaoundéré for over ten years. As an anesthetist, the improvement of the anesthetic conditions and thus the safety of the surgeries are of particular concern to him.
Alexander Gross
Alexander Gross, a founding member of Deutsche Cleft Kinderhilfe, manages the association’s operations in full-time in addition to his board work. The former Bundesliga professional ice hockey player studied sociology, education and politics in Freiburg. He started his professional career in Switzerland, where among other things he advised non-profit organizations.
Thomas Schneider
For entrepreneur and master tanner Thomas Schneider, corporate social responsibility is a personal obligation. As the founder ISA TanTec, a group of tanneries with locations in China, Vietnam, the USA and Italy, he advocates for environmentally friendly processes in leather processing. He has been a member of the DCKH board since 2018.

Board of directors

The board of directors of Deutsche Cleft Kinderhilfe consists of three people who work on a voluntary basis. This organ, whose composition and responsibilities are defined in the charter, advises the board and controls the annual budget compliance and financial management of the charity.
Ute Henninger-Sehling
Dr. Christian Rüsch
Economist and tax advisor
Dr. Dr. Oliver Blume
Specialist in oral and maxillofacial surgery and dentistry

Board of Trustees

The board of trustees of the Deutsche Cleft Kinderhilfe e.V. acts as a medical specialist commission. Its four volunteer members have extensive experience in the area of cleft lip and palate treatment and cover several relevant specialist disciplines.
Prof. Dr. Dr. Götz Ehmann
Specialist in oral and maxillofacial surgery and plastic surgery
Prof. Dr. Dr. Jürgen Dieckmann
Specialist in oral and maxillofacial surgery and dentistry
Gunther Au-Balbach
Specialist in oral and maxillofacial surgery
Dr. med. dent. Jos van den Hoek
Specialist in dentistry and orthodontics

Extract from the charter

  • Implementation and support of medical aid projects for the treatment of patients with cleft lip and palate in […] close cooperation with local doctors and therapists
  • Implementation and support of measures to improve awareness in the population
  • Implementation and support of training, further education and specialization measures […]
  • Technical, organizational and financial support for the establishment of a suitable technical infrastructure […]
  • Assumption of costs for free or inexpensive treatments for needy patients with cleft lip and palate, including […] aftercare, especially for children and adolescents
  • Strengthening of the general interest in working with and with cleft patients

You can download the complete charter here.


Deutsche Cleft Kinderhilfe Foundation

Help and heal sustainably – that is the motto of the Deutsche Cleft Kinderhilfe Foundation, which supports selected projects of our charity. The foundation was established by the Stuttgart oral and maxillofacial surgeon Dr. Dr. med. Heinz Lübbe, who was a board member of the German Cleft Kinderhilfe e. V. from 2005 until his death in September 2015.

Heinz Lübbe was not only an excellent doctor – he was also a visionary and worked as an active manager for the charity. He was committed to ensuring that cleft children in developing countries have access to qualified and comprehensive treatment. The establishment of the foundation was his last major initiative, which he initiated despite a serious illness.


Partner associations “D-A-CH”

Therwil and Dornbirn – our two partner associations in Switzerland and Austria are pursuing a great goal with us: to give children with cleft lip and palate a chance in life. Our Austrian partner association was only established late last year under the name Austrian Cleft Children’s Aid and is currently still organizing itself. Further information will follow shortly.

Board of our Swiss partner association, the SHfS: Jos van den Hoek, Madeline Kummer, Brigitte Winkler, Angela Guldimann, Marianne Campiche, Sandro Negri, Alexander Gross (v. l. n. r.)

Partner association Switzerland

In cooperation with Swiss doctors, the board and employees of Deutsche Cleft Kinderhilfe founded a partner association in Switzerland in 2008. The Swiss Aid Society for Cleft Children (Schweizer Hilfe für Spaltkinder, SHfS), based in Therwil near Basel, was created to generate additional funds in Switzerland to aid cleft children. Since December 2013, the SHfS has financed more than 200 operations in our Indian treatment centers every year. This funding currently benefits the fission center in Patna. The Swiss team works on a voluntary basis.