Loubna Freih • The Princess Charlene Of Monaco Foundation South Africa Skip to content


Loubna is a long-standing human rights policymaker and advocate, journalist, writer and Tri-athlete based in Verbier and Monaco and most recently Cape Town. Loubna is a successful athlete, mental coach, family mediator and instructor. She cares deeply about human rights, mountains and oceans and is the mom of two grown up boys. She is an accomplished Alpine skier, mountaineer and tri-athlete.

She was Human Rights Watch’s first Geneva-based Director advocating to the UN on human rights and refugee issues. She is a member of the Geneva community, she launched the Human Rights Watch Geneva Committee in 2001. At Human Rights Watch, she focuses on advocating to the sports organisations, such as the IOC and the sports federation, advocating for players rights and access for women and girls to sports and sporting events in their countries, as well as for the rights of workers, migrants, women, minorities and journalists to be upheld when holding large sporting events in repressive countries. In 2005 she helped launch the Zurich Committee, followed by the Beirut Committee.

In addition to human rights work, Loubna works as a family mediator and coach for children and adolescents. She is a mental trainer for athletes and is currently in charge of all mental training for the Youths (age 12-20) at Swiss Sailing. She follows over 40 athletes both adults and adolescents across several disciplines ranging from sailing to triathlon, cycling and alpine and freeride skiing.

Loubna has worked as a journalist in New York and Geneva and has taught human rights at the Harvard Kennedy School, conflict resolution and mediation at the University of Geneva and mental preparation at the University of Lausanne. She also co-founded a literacy tutoring program for children ages 7-10 in Masiphumelele Township in Cape Town.

She holds a Master of Public Administration from Harvard University and Master’s degrees in journalism from New York University and in creative writing from Queens University of Charlotte. She sits on the board of Human Rights Watch and the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy. She also sits on Human Rights Watch’s MENA and children rights advisory councils.  

She achieved top ten position at Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii in 2022 and 2023.  She won Ironman Nice in her age category in 2022 and 2023 and won the 70.3 in Venice-Jesolo in May 2024. She has had 5 podium Ironman and 70.3 finishers – Nice, Thun, Vichy and in Venice-Jesolo. She has several ski mountaineering podiums, including for the Patrouille des Glaciers from Zermatt to Verbier in 2018 and 2022. She also achieved the top 5% of women finishing the New York and Geneva marathons. She is a member of ASM Monaco Triathlon Club and won the prestigious HSH Prince Albert’s Bronze medal of Sports Merit in 2023.

Loubna is an all-rounder, doing the most incredible work around the world and through sport is truly making a difference in peoples’ lives. She knows Cape Town well and cares about South Africa, in 2005-2007 Loubna lived in Kommetjie with her children for a few years.