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The Naked Difference: A look at the Kolisi Foundation

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A Naked Difference cause driven to eradicate inequality in South Africa one person at a time.

“A person is a person through other persons.” This is the principle behind ubuntu and the way Rachel Kolisi describes Grace – one of the many people the Kolisi Foundation is working alongside.

Grace regularly takes women and children who have been abused into her own home – even if it means she doesn’t have a bed for the night. She relies heavily on donations and help from the public for her shelter, as well as to help run a community kitchen three times a week.

Grace is one of many people the Kolisi Foundation is choosing to support, and it’s why we’ve decided to support them through the Naked Difference.

Eradicating the narrative of inequality in South Africa

A little bit about the Kolisi Foundation and why we’ve added them to the Naked Difference

Rachel and Siya Kolisi founded the Kolisi Foundation with the belief that through listening and collaboration, a challenge like eradicating inequality in South Africa is possible. They’ve cleverly made connections and relationships with pre-existing NPOs and NGOs instead of approaching issues on their own. “What keeps me going is seeing what we, as South Africans, have done in the past when we’re all working together towards one common goal – how nothing can stop us,” says Siya.

The Kolisis believe that approaching the challenges people face by partnering with them is far more effective and efficient than going out on their own, which is why listening, learning, acting and collaboration are core values of the foundation.

“We need to listen to what people dealing with challenging circumstances really need. We need to listen to those already working in the community, the other NPOs and NGOs, in order to both learn from them and to better support them,” explains Rachel.

Rachel and Siya feel that their own stories allow them to empathise with those they work alongside. While eradicating inequality in South Africa is a big challenge, they try to make small changes that will have a bigger impact over time. They follow a simple and sincere life philosophy: Remember the one, one by one.

“Just focus on the one heart, the one person and the one life that you are changing. To remember that that counts. That is more important than anything else,” says Rachel.

The Kolisi Foundation focuses on three major issues: food security, gender-based violence, and education and sports development

Here are a couple of their active projects:

Grace for Grace

Rachel Kolisi met Grace through the Kolisi Foundation while assisting an abused woman called “Sharon”. Grace regularly takes abused women and children in her community under her wing. With the help of the Kolisi Foundation, Grace completed training at the Saartjie Baartman Centre to enable her to support GBV survivors holistically. She has also started her own community kitchen from home as well as implemented various women empowerment initiatives in her community.

Langa for Men

Founded by Luyola and Siyabonga, residents of Langa township in Cape Town, Langa for Men educates and inspires young boys to be protectors of women, not perpetrators. They understand that Gender-Based Violence (GBV) starts and ends with men. They have also started a community kitchen and soccer team.

Lungisa Haai

Lungisa Haai is the founder of Siphekela-Isizwe Feeding Scheme, which runs community kitchens in Gugulethu, Khayelitsha, Dunoon and Joe Slovo to give more than 1,000 children a daily meal. People can also support the Kolisi Foundation’s community kitchen initiatives by “adopting” a community kitchen via the Kolisi Kollective platform.

Power2You Packs

With the help of their partner organisations, the Kolisi Foundation launched our Power2You Packs Project in August 2020. The Power2You Pack consists of a pepper-spray, whistle, emergency number wallet-sized card, and a journal with resourceful information about seeking justice, legal help, and healing. The intention of the Power2You pack is to support victims of gender-based violence.

Sports and Education Infrastructure

The Kolisi Foundation is leveraging corporate and civil society partnerships for major infrastructural investments, such as toilets, kitchens, and sports facilities. They also engage in NGO partnerships to support sport and physical education programmes in schools and communities.

24/7 Trauma Hotline

The Kolisi Foundation supports the full operational costs of a free 24/7 counselling, trauma and Gender-Based Violence (GBV) support hotline. The Community Intervention Centre runs the hotline, maintains a network of counsellors, and works closely with local hospitals and SAPS Victim Support Services.

What is the Naked Difference and how does it make Naked different from other insurers?

When you see or hear “Naked Difference”, Corporate Social Investment might be what comes to mind. But it shouldn’t. The Naked Difference isn’t the icing on the cake as far as social impact goes. The way we’ve built Naked means that causes benefit directly from the way we do business. We’re on a path to do good in an otherwise grudge-purchase industry.

We take a flat fee upfront to cover running costs and profit. The rest of the money goes towards claims, with leftover premiums at the end of the year paid to causes our clients choose. This is different from other insurers, who take the leftover money as profit: we’ve removed the conflict of interest completely. This is the Naked Difference and it changes everything about insurance.

We’re really passionate about telling people about the Naked Difference and who it supports, so we’re featuring our causes to share what they do within South African communities.

Get involved

If you’d like to support the Kolisi Foundation, you can donate directly via www.kolisifoundation.org or you can switch your insurance over to Naked and select them as one of your causes on the app! You can also subscribe to the Kolisi Kollective, which allows you to donate monthly but also take part in giveaways, live conversations and get regular updates on what the foundation is doing!

Images by: Black Bean Productions.

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