Welcome to the NFDI

Every Nation must stop and take pause, especially one with deep divisions both racial and economic as in South Africa, in order to constantly refine its capacity for reflection, dialogue and action. It is against this background that the National Foundations Dialogue Initiative (NFDI) was born.

The central aim of NFDI is earnest dialogue and consensus building. The social and political diversity of the Founding Member foundations is a mirror of our country. NFDI is convinced that this provides a sufficiently broad basis for South Africans from different backgrounds and persuasions to reflect on the Nation’s experience of the past 21 years, to confront our problems, challenges, fears and perceptions about one another and the country in search of a contract within which we can share a common citizenship as defined in the Constitution.


Our Vision

To strengthen and deepen our constitutional democracy through dialogue.


Three focused national dialogue themes are to be pursued in terms of the vision:
Theme 1

Social cohesion and a non-violent society

  • NFDI reference group members to engage in dialogue with outside parties.
  • Research on complex and sensitive aspects to be commissioned.


Theme 2

Growth of the economy

  • Engage in dialogue with leading figures in private and public sectors who play an important role in the economy.
  • Facilitate dialogue, in particular, on the fourth industrial revolution.
  • Research on complex and sensitive subjects to be commissioned.
Theme 3

A more responsive and accountable state

  • Conduct grass roots dialogue in order to ascertain needs within society.
  • Engage in dialogue with leading figures who can influence state institutions.


Upcoming Events

In the coming months, NFDI will facilitate dialogue across the country, co-ordinate, document, research and record these conversations and dialogues about the State of our Nation. It will then endeavor to chart a way forward that will hopefully unite the country and strengthen its democratic values. NFDI will also endeavor to ensure that the outcomes of these dialogues are included in the programmes of both Government and the Private Sector.

Latest News

NFDI Strategy Session – 26 February 2020.

Helen Suzman Foundation (HSF) offices in Parktown, Johannesburg. The National Foundations Dialogue Initiative (NFDI) Chairperson, Ms Nomhle Canca capped NFDI’s ...

HSRC signed MoU with NFDI

The Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC) and the National Foundations Dialogue Initiative (NFDI) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Monday, 22 July 2019. This partnership will formalise and strengthen collaboration opportunities in areas of research development and public dialogue in South Africa.

The two organisations agreed to sign a partnership agreement to collaborate in hosting national dialogues that explore how best to foster communication across different spheres (for example, those of the Executive, the Legislature, and the Judiciary; government and civil society; the public and private sectors) within the framework of the Constitution.

According to the HSRC’s Executive Director of the Democracy, Governance and Service Delivery (DGSD) research programme, Professor Narnia Bohler-Muller, the HSRC seeks to collaborate with the NFDI and dialogue participants in a way that informs and empowers communities with topical data to equip citizens to engage with organs of state and other authorities and institutions that are accountable to communities.

“One of our key aims is to facilitate a process of citizen engagement with local government to improve service delivery,” she added.

While the HSRC is a statutory research institution within the Republic of South Africa, the NFDI is a partnership among various foundations, which include the Chief Albert Luthuli, FW de Klerk, Jakes Gerwel, Thabo Mbeki, Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Trust, Helen Suzman, Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy, Umlambo and Kgalema Motlanthe Foundations.

These foundations bear the names of illustrious South Africans, past and present, who have dedicated their lives to the achievement of freedom and democracy in our land.

The MoU was signed at the HSRC Building, Pretoria CBD.

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The National Foundations Dialogue Initiative supports #AhmedKathradaFoundation Stop C19 Corruption Campaign ...

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Resource Gallery

The latest NFDI media statements available here.
For comment or further information, please contact info@nfdi.org.za.

Support Us

National Foundations Dialogue Initiative is a registered NPC (2015/332300/08) with Public Benefit Organisation (PBO) status

By supporting our Foundation, you may qualify for a Section 18A Tax Exemption Certificate and also be part of the citizens of our country who encourage a step to a better future.

Founding Members

Thabo Mbeki Foundation

Chief Albert Luthuli Foundation

Umlambo Foundation

Helen Suzman Foundation

Kgalema Motlanthe Foundation

The Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation

FW de Klerk Foundation

Jakes Gerwel Foundation

Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Trust