Dr Imtiaz Sooliman

With a positive mindset and by practising hope and gratitude, one can truly change the world around us for the better – this was the takeaway from Dr Imtiaz Sooliman’s recent talk. The Val de Vie Foundation, in partnership with U3A, hosted the event at the Polo Pavilion, which over 170 residents attended. Dr Imtiaz Sooliman is the visionary behind the Gift of the Givers Foundation, and this event brought our community together and highlighted the profound impact of selfless service and humanitarian aid.

Dr Imtiaz Sooliman passionately spoke about establishing the Gift of the Givers Foundation in 1992. He shared his journey and the evolution of what is now Africa’s largest disaster response non-governmental organisation of African origin.

Gift of the Givers Foundation

With operations extending to over 45 countries, it has made a monumental impact by providing disaster relief and aiding the most vulnerable. The stories he relayed about navigating complex challenges during humanitarian crises educated and deeply inspired all those present. His message was one of unwavering positivity and hope for South Africa’s future, reminding us of the resilience and kindness inherent in human nature. Chris Gibbons, a renowned business journalist, then led an engaging Q&A session, allowing attendees to delve deeper into the discussion on humanitarian efforts and their impact on society.

Gift of the Givers foundation continues to be funded solely in South Africa, and these funds are always forthcoming whenever there is a need. Those representing the Val de Vie Foundation added that they have experienced the same goodwill from residents, which includes donations during the COVID-19 pandemic, flooding and other natural disasters. In addition, money raised through charitable events has built classrooms and provided much-needed facilities for underprivileged children in our wider communities.

Ryk Neethling, Marketing and Brand Director at the Val de Vie Group, also gave a fascinating presentation regarding the Val de Vie Foundation’s mission and values, followed by insights from Allan Richard, Chairman at U3A. The afternoon was a testament to the shared values of respect, care, and dedication that the Gift of the Givers Foundation and the Val de Vie Foundation uphold.