Mission

"I stand for simple justice, equal opportunity and human rights; the indispensable elements in a democratic society - and well worth fighting for." 

Helen Suzman

The Helen Suzman Foundation promotes liberal constitutional democracy.

Our liberalism is grounded in Helen’s legacy, and draws from the history of liberal thought in South Africa.

By liberalism I don’t mean the creed of any party or any century. I mean generosity of spirit, a tolerance of others, an attempt to comprehend otherness, a commitment to the rule of law, a high ideal of the worth and dignity of man, a repugnance for authoritarianism and a love of freedom. — Alan Paton

I am proud to acknowledge that I am a liberal...who adheres to old-fashioned liberal values such as the rule of law, universal franchise, free elections, a free press, free association, guaranteed civil rights and an independent judiciary. - Helen Suzman

It is our firm belief that the Constitution of South Africa is a liberal document. In its preamble it calls for “a society based on democratic values, social justice and fundamental human rights”, which aims to “free the potential of each person” and where “every citizen is equally protected by law”.

The Foundation’s work centres on the promotion of the following values:

  • Social justice
  • Human rights
  • The Rule of Law
  • Free and fair political competition
  • Non-racialism
  • Individual freedom
  • Reasoned Discourse


We promote good governance, transparency and accountability. We advocate policies that translate the aspirations of our Constitution into lived reality for all South Africans.

We are not aligned to any particular political party, but rather participate proactively in public debates to promote Constitutional values.