CELEBRATING A LEGACY
The late Rajen Reddy, CEO and founder of the RR Group, who sadly passed away on the 18 February 2021, created a profound legacy for both the current generation and those generations that follow.
Rajen’s life of excellence is well worthy of celebration. Apart from his drive to make the world a better place, he was an avid entrepreneur, and a visionary business leader. From small beginnings – he started his working life as a plumber – his obvious passion for his businesses was apparent in his tenacity to succeed against all odds.
Most importantly, Rajen was a loving husband, father, grandfather, and a supportive friend too many. He touched the lives of his family, friends, employees, clients, and the many other people with whom he interacted in countless meaningful ways.
Esay Reddy, Rajen’s wife for close to 40 years, reflected, “We lost a wonderful man; I lost my soul mate, my children – Kerushin, Venisha and Kreeshan – lost their father. Our businesses and our 300 employees lost their leader. The many initiatives that he was involved in lost an enthusiastic supporter. After Rajen passed, I found that for us to honour him as a person. I wanted to create a legacy – I wanted something to grow from this great loss that we all experienced.”
Consequently, the Rajen Reddy Foundation (RR Foundation) was created in his memory and launched on the 18 February 2022, the first anniversary of his passing. The RR Foundation’s overriding goal, said Esay, is to be an embodiment of everything that Rajen stood for, fought for and passionately lived for.
Rajen was a great philanthropist who was passionate about growing young entrepreneurs, about providing access to education and about promoting physical and mental health. These aspirations drive the RR Foundation’s path, which as its motto states, aims to ‘educate, inspire and motivate’.
The three pillars of the Foundation are:
• Physical Health
• Mental Health (Philosophical Psychology)
A current goal of the RR Foundation is to focus on ensuring that its Flagship projects, which fall under each of these pillars, are bought to full fruition. These projects, which are at various stages of development, are:
• The Aurora Hospice for Children. The core function will be to offer palliative care for children who live with cancer.
• 24/7‐365 Mental Health and Gender Based Violence Online Call Centre. A constituency of local and international psychologists and organisations will provide the expertise and knowledge in the services that the call centre requires.
• RR School of Leadership. The Core Curriculum is the professional development of young leaders with emphasis on ethical conduct.
Institutional Relationships and Ad Hoc Projects
Following the launch of the RR Foundation, several institutional relationships, which in many cases were a consequence of Rajen’s initiatives, were forged.
These include the Nelson Mandela Foundation, World University Association for Community Development (WUACD), AirlanggaUniversity andDurbanUniversity of Technology (DUT),the Confucius Institute atDUT, eThekwini Municipality and the KZN Department of Sport, Arts and Culture, among others. Through these partnerships several ad hoc projects have been completed, some of which are in continuous progression or have evolved into new phases of implementation. These include:
• The Inaugural Durban International Book Fair which was held from 1 – 5 August 2022 at Sibaya
Conference Centre. The event showcased a range of local writers, publishers and budding creatives displaying theirtalents for storytelling. The RR Foundation was approached to exhibitthrough its publishing house, Nadim Books and launched its latest publication, The Art of Storytelling. The event provided an opportunity to present the Wayang Kulit (Shadow Puppetry) project to a local audience and highlight the RR Foundation’s partnerships with the WUACD, Airlangga University and DUT.
The official commencement of the partnership between the Confucius Institute at the DUT and the
RR Foundation was marked on 5 October 2022. Both parties have agreed to facilitate closer collaboration in
organising workshops focusing on Health, Wellness, Chinese and Vocational Skill Training Programmes and
co‐organising cultural functions and activities. Tai Chi, Qigong and Chinese traditional medicine classes
have commenced within the RR Group of companies amongst all staff. The classes will take place at the
Group’s facilities in Durban before the classes are opened to the youth from the wider communities.
• The RR Foundation collaborated with the South African BRICS Youth Association (SABYA) for the inaugural BRICS International Summer School held at DUT in 2022. The Leadership Development Training Program – Leadership for Freedom from Poverty was presented. The RR Foundation aims to formalise their relationship with SABYA early this year in the form of a Memorandum of Understanding towards common goals and objectives within a global dynamic as it relates to South Africa and the youth.
• The RR Foundation was invited by the Nelson Mandela Foundation to their Lead Like Mandela Summit, titled Mandela Talks – African Leadership Summit on Sustainable Development. The RR Foundation represented and chaired the breakaway session on Education, Science, Technology, and Innovation. The outcomes of that breakaway were presented on the feedback panel session towards the end of the Summit. The RR Foundation anticipates further involvement with the Nelson Mandela Foundation in 2023.
• Esay Reddy (Executive Chair of the RR Foundation) attended the Singapore National Day on 9 August 2022 under special invitation from the High Commission of the Republic of Singapore in Pretoria. The day is marked as a celebration of independence from Malaysia in 1965.
The Centre for Social Entrepreneurship in partnership with RR Foundation supports local SMMEs towards the greater good. On Monday 9 May 2022, five SMMEs from the Centre were randomly selected by the RR Foundation to provide much needed goods and services to a few institutes and organisations. The RR Foundation selectedDr Macken Mistry Primary School, Khethiwe Kids Rehab Centre, KerrHouseDurban Hospice for Women, and Chatsworth Regional Hospice as part of an ongoing initiative.
• Friday, 18November 2022 was a day spentin supporting the cause of SMMEDevelopment and Early Childhood Development. eThekwini Business Support, and Oluthando Home Fitting Co‐ops supported
SekusileDay Care by providing 100 cubicle lockers that served in separating an open space classroom as well as storing the children’s bags during the day.
• The RR Foundation’s relationship with DUT was established by Rajen Reddy based on a mutual understanding for the progressive needs in Science and Technology, Innovation, and Education. The RR Foundation engages with DUT Centre for Social Entrepreneurship on a continuous basis to identify ongoing synergies and collaboration within the SMME development space, especially amongst the youth.
Gala Dinner 2023
The RR Foundation will be hosting a gala dinner on Saturday 18 February 2023 to showcase its successes and the progress made in implementing the flagship and other projects. The Foundation will also use the opportunity to raise funds or obtain pledges for services in order to continue its effort to benefit children, youth and elders in South Africa and sub‐Saharan Africa.
For more information contact:
CEO of the RR Foundation
Fundraiser of the RR Foundation
071 553 4007
Marketing Manager of the RR Group
081 454 8610