Kuala Lumpur, June 25, 2011: Malaysian entrepreneur and Executive Chairman of the QI Group Vijay Eswaran features among the top 48 philanthropists in Forbes Asia‘s annual list of Heroes of Philanthropy in the region. The list features some of Asia-Pacific’s most high-profile and interesting givers to society. Four philanthropists were picked from each of the 12 markets in the region. Vijay Eswaran features as one of the four from Malaysia along side Vincent Tan, Koon Yew Yin and the husband & wife team of Angela &HijjasKasturi.
Vijay Eswaran, who comes from a family of philanthropists, has been deeply involved in a number of charitable projects worldwide through his two foundations – RYTHM Foundation and its Malaysian chapter Vijayaratnam Foundation. While RYTHM Foundation, registered in Hong Kong has been involved in various initiatives globally in the areas of education, disaster relief, children and community development, its Malaysian Chapter, Vijayaratnam Foundation that Vijay Eswaran established in honour of his father is involved in youth and women empowerment, arts & culture, child mentoring and environment protection projects in Malaysia.
RYTHM Foundation has been involved in rehabilitation projects for some of the most devastating natural disasters in recent times such as the Indian Ocean Tsunami in 2004, the Central Java earthquake in Indonesia in 2006, the Typhoon Ondoy in the Philippines in 2010 and most recently the floods in coastal Sri Lanka. Vijayaratnam Foundation is most well known for its projects Footprints, a mentoring program for children in orphanages, Maharani, a series of educational & empowerment camps focused on adolescent girls from under privileged backgrounds and Taarana, a centre for children with learning disabilities.
“ I am deeply humbled by this honour. I come from a family where philanthropy has been a way of life. My parents have instilled in me the value of being in service to others from a young age. And one of my icons is Mahatma Gandhi whose teachings form the basis of RYTHM – Raise Yourself To Help Mankind, which led to the inception of the RYTHM Foundation.
The Foundation was conceived not to primarily be a donor or a charity, but instead to be a catalyst to innovate, inspire and implement new synergies that would allow people to stand on their own feet as opposed to looking for aid. Which is why we focus on the time and effort we are able to give people in need, as opposed to the size of the cheque. This honour is ultimately a recognition of 13 years of being in RYTHM.” Says Vijay Eswaran on being chosen as one of the 48 Heroes.
“Some are big tycoons, even billionaires, who have a large vision of how best to help society and have donated millions of dollars to back up that vision. Others are little-known citizens who are extremely generous with their limited funds,” said Forbes Asia Senior Editor John Koppisch.
He said the magazine’s goal is not to rank the biggest givers by dollar amounts or percentage of assets, as those figures would be impossible to collect. “Instead, the aim is to call attention to a mix of notable people and causes throughout the region and to encourage more giving,” he added.
Vijay Eswaran in Philanthropy Heroes list
About Vijay Eswaran
Dr.VijayEswaran, the Executive Chairman of the multinational conglomerate, QI Group of Companies, is a successful entrepreneur, a bestselling author, well-known speaker and committed philanthropist. He is the author of the highly successful book In the Sphere of Silence, translated into 6 languages and three other books on life management – In the Thinking Zone, 18 Stepping Stones and On the Wings of Thought.
A highly respected motivational speaker, Dr. Vijay Eswaran lectures around the world on a variety of subjects ranging from spirituality to business at leading universities, management and business leadership forums. Most recently he was a panelist at the WEF’s East Asia Summit in Jakarta and the Commonwealth Business Forum of the CHOGM in Trinidad & Tobago.
In late 2006, he was conferred with the honorary title ‘Dato’ by His Royal Highness The Sultan of Pahang in Malaysia and is hence known as Dato’ Vijay Eswaran in Malaysia. He is the recipient of the International Excellence in Business award from GOPIO (Global Organisation for People of Indian Origin) and was conferred with an honorary doctorate in management by SMC University in Switzerland.