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Siya Kolisi and the Kolisi Foundation



Siya Kolisi, the first black captain to lead the South African national rugby team to a World Cup victory in 2019, only to repeat the feat in 2023, is not just a sports icon but a beacon of hope and transformation in South Africa.

While many captains of the Northern Hemisphere’s national sides are in the midst of the 2024 Guinness Six Nations, Kolisi, along with his wife Rachel, are continuing on their mission to uplift and support the underprivileged communities through the Kolisi Foundation.

What is the Kolisi Foundation?

Established in early 2020, the foundation’s work reflects the couple’s deep commitment to tackling the systemic issues by creating safe spaces, focusing on sport and education, combating gender-based violence, and enhancing food security. Their approach is characterised by a deep commitment to “Remember the one, one by one,” a motto that encapsulates their belief in the power of individual change to foster collective transformation.

This philosophy is not just a guiding principle but a call to action that has mobilised support and partnership across various sectors, including a notable collaboration with Sportsnation that was announced in 2023 to promote sustainable partnerships between the commercial and non-profit sectors.

What does Siya Kolisi do at the Foundation?

Siya and Rachel’s personal involvement in the foundation’s activities is a testament to their dedication. From distributing food parcels and personal protective equipment to advocating for victims of gender-based violence, they are often seen on the front lines, working directly with the communities. This hands-on approach not only amplifies their impact but also inspires others to join their cause, leveraging their considerable platform to foster a culture of giving and compassion.

As the Foundation looks to the future, its focus remains steadfast on making tangible, lasting changes in the lives of those it serves. The initiatives undertaken, from addressing immediate needs like food security and health education to long-term goals such as educational support and violence prevention, demonstrate a holistic approach to philanthropy. With Rachel Kolisi at the helm, expressing gratitude for the support and partnership that have been pivotal to their success, the Foundation is poised for continued growth and impact.

Their work, heavily rooted in community engagement and empowerment, reflects a broader vision of a thriving, equitable South Africa. The Kolisi Foundation’s efforts to unite organisations, mobilise resources, and strengthen infrastructure and learning have set a powerful example of how sport and public figures can play a transformative role in society. As they advance, the Foundation’s dedication to “changing the stories of inequality” remains a beacon of hope and a testament to the power of collective action and compassion​​​​​​.

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