About Us

We offer all the tools to create a better understanding of what restitution is all about and why it matters. Our mission is to help you!

What is Restitution?

Restitution involves seeking to set right the generational ills of inequality by engaging those who have benefited from the systems of colonialism and apartheid, directly or indirectly, in transferring wealth and social capital and reinvesting in communities that are still suffering.  

The word “restitution” means to restore something lost or stolen to its proper owner or to recompense or compensate for injury or loss. We normally hear it used in a legal sense where it refers to ‘paying back’ or ‘making things right’ for wrongs previously committed. However, even in courts we recognise that some wrongs can never be made right, for example murder or torture.

Why does Restitution Matter?

It is only possible for people to live in real peace with each other when the root causes of a conflict are addressed. Peace in South Africa will remain fragile as long as the root causes of colonialism and apartheid remain unaddressed, with levels of inequality still deeply entrenched and starkly raced and the wounds of injured humanity evident in all sectors of society.

Restitution speaks about confronting the root causes and actively deciding what needs to be done to address it. While restitution in South Africa includes the problem of land and socio-economic redress, restitution ultimately aims at restoring dignity, a sense of belonging and all our humanity.

2-Graph - Restitution Foundation

Who is the Restitution Foundation

The Restitution Foundation, a Cape Town based NGO, was established in 2003 in response to the broader South African society not having taken up a restitution responsibility for the human rights abuses of colonialism and apartheid.

It recognised that the transition to democracy called for citizen-led restitution to “level the playing field” alongside state-level redress measures (including the repeal of racist laws and enactment of law aimed at facilitating redress in land, employment and reconciliation). The organisation’s vision is to be a catalyst for broader social restitution that can lead to healing in South Africa.

The Restitution Foundation

For more information or enquiries, feel free to contact us and we will get back to you. We are always ready to help!