The MAD Foundation (Make A Difference)
We are delighted to announce that CGF Research Institute (Pty) Ltd has become a "friend" of the MAD Foundation which was established in 2003, and is chaired by Francois Pienaar. MAD gives academically talented youngsters from less fortunate backgrounds an exceptional educational opportunity to reach their full potential as leaders and role models in South African society.
The Make a Difference (MAD) Foundation is a South African based charity organisation which seeks to develop a select cadre of high performance individuals who can be active role models and inspire others, as well as support each other in the future. MAD’s eventual aim is to create an alumni group of MAD beneficiaries who create positive change in an emerging democracy.
Business organisations and sports teams have long recognised the importance of nurturing top talent and believe in the idea of a ‘tipping point’, such where just a little extra help or support can become the turning point in a person’s life, or any other given situation. As most winning enthusiasts will know, the difference in business or sport that separates winners versus runner-ups only requires a one point difference, or 1%, as may be the case.
Unified in the belief that he could make a difference and tip the scales in favour of talented youngsters who come from disadvantaged backgrounds, Francois Pienaar and a small group of friends decided to channel their energy and influence, to change the lives of carefully selected youngsters in the belief that these individuals would not only positively affect those in their direct vicinity, but indeed change the lives of many other South African’s for the good.
And this is why the MAD Team, who are not only accomplished international sporting heroes but indeed also successful businessmen and women, established a Beneficiary Education Programme for these individuals. MAD believes that the cause for change occurs most often within young people’s lives when they are encouraged and motivated through positive mentorship, thereby allowing these talented individuals to reach their full potential by seriously applying themselves in their education and leadership roles.
A small but vital minority of top performers -- be these scholars or business leaders -- can create positive change in our society.
CGF’s involvement with MAD is a supportive and advisory function where we assist the MAD Foundation with matters pertaining those of governance, risk and compliance.
Moreover, CGF has assembled a mini-awareness governance programme for the MAD youth -- who as ambassadors of MAD -- are able to receive practical information at an early stage of their young and aspiring careers. They can apply this vital information in their personal lives as many of them enter university and or business environments.
CGF is proudly a ‘friend’ of the MAD Foundation and as one of its ambassadors; we promote their good cause through our extensive corporate networks for additional support for Corporate Social Investment (CSI) purposes.
MAD honorary patrons
Impressively, MAD enjoys the support of six international rugby captains who have all held the Rugby World Cup Web Ellis trophy in victory. These incredible people inspire MAD with passion and humility -- they are Francois Pienaar (Chairman of MAD), David Kirk, John Eales, Martin Johnson, Nick Farr-Jones and John Smit -- each of whom have pledged their support and energy to make a difference in the lives of disadvantaged communities in South Africa.
Francois Pienaar (MAD Chairman)
- World Cup 1995: South Africa vs. New Zealand
- Final Score 15-12
- Stadium: Ellis Park, Johannesburg
- Other Highlights: Pienaar played in 29 Tests between 1993 and 1996, all of them as captain. International Rugby Player of the Year in 1994. Awarded with an honorary doctorate in science at the University of Hertfordshire
David Kirk (Honorary Member)
- World Cup 1987: New Zealand vs. France
- Final Score 29-9
- Stadium: Eden Park, Auckland
- Other Highlights: Kirk played in 17 Tests between 1985 and his retirement in 1987 at the age of 26. He captained the All Blacks thirteen times in 1986 and 1987, eleven times on the winning side. A medical graduate from Otago University when he was awarded a Rhodes Scholarship. Now Kirk is a businessman, the CEO of Fairfax Media Limited, Australasia’s largest media company.
Nick Farr-Jones (Honorary Member)
- World Cup 1991: Australia vs. England
- Final Score 12-6
- Stadium: Twickenham, London
- Other Highlights: Played in 63 Tests for the Wallabies between 1984 and 1993, 36 times as their captain. A law graduate from Sydney University Member of the Order of Australia. A member of the senate of Sydney University, a Sydney City Councilor and an attaché to the New Zealand National Paralympic Committee.
John Eales (Honorary Member)
- World Cup 1999: Australia vs. France
- Final Score 35-12
- Stadium: Millennium, Cardiff
- Other Highlights: An international career of 86 Tests between 1991 and 2001, 55 of them as captain of the Wallabies. Participated at three World Cup matches, twice as a winner. He was in the winning Australian team in 1991 and back there again to receive the Web Ellis Cup as captain in 1999. Received a medallion from the Australian Institute of Sport. Australian rugby’s most prestigious award is the John Eales Medal.
Martin Johnson (Honorary Member)
- World Cup 2003: England vs. Australia
- Final Score 20-17
- Stadium: Telstra Stadium, Sydney
- Other Highlights: Only player to have captained the British & Irish Lions on two separate tours - to South Africa in 1997 and Australia in 2001. Won six league titles at club level and led his side to back-to-back European Cup victories. Won 84 England caps (44 as captain), eight full Lions caps (six as captain), two Grand Slams, two Five Nations titles, two Six Nation titles and the Rugby World Cup. Awarded a CBE by the Queen in the 2003 New Year’s Honours.
John Smit (Honorary Member)
- World Cup 2007: South Africa vs. England
- Final Score 15-6
- Stadium: Stade de France, St Denis, Paris
- Other Highlights: One of South Africa’s most successful captains ever, having lead the Springboks to victory in 16 of the 22 games that he captained. Smit has led the Boks in a record 49 Tests (he surpassed Gary Teichmann’s record of 39 tests earlier in the 2007 season) and has played a record 73 Tests as a hooker (the other two were at prop). Smit captained the Baby Boks to U21 World Championship title in Argentina in 1999 and the Sharks to the Vodacom Super 14 final in 2007.