Devan Moonsamy has more than 15 years’ experience in the learning and development space. He is the CEO of the I Can Help Africa Foundation (ICHAF) Training Institute Pty (Ltd), a SETA-accredited training provider and lead supplier to large organisations such as Barloworld, the Avis Budget Group, Norton Rose Fulbright, and Peermont Global Hotels and Resorts, to name a few.
As a student in his early 20s, Devan started offering confidence, communication and life skills programmes to children and young adults. He registered his first company in these early years – the training company which has evolved to become the ICHAF Training Institute. Devan is a motivational speaker with a deep love for people and a passion for human growth and development. He speaks on the subjects of diversity, gender, persons living with disabilities, leadership, discrimination, and effective and efficient management in today’s business environment.
Devan is a skilled corporate facilitator and communicator, and spent much of his time facilitating SETA-accredited learnerships and qualifications from the beginning of his career. As the ICHAF Training Institute grew, more skilled trainers joined the team to assist, and thus Devan is now able to focus more on seminars, workshops and speaking.
Devan was born in Verulam in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN), and his family moved to Standerton when he was just a year old. His father left KZN due to limited work opportunities, and the young family settled in Mpumalanga. Devan completed high school in Benoni. Devan has two older sisters, Evon Naicker and Evellin Naidoo, both of whom work closely with him at the ICHAF Training Institute in facilitation and administration.
Devan is a ‘Renaissance man’ in many ways, that is, a man who has sought out a variety of experiences, exposure to different views and types of people, and he has developed many skills to a high level of competency. A Renaissance person such as Devan does not see himself as any one thing, but as a person capable of many things, and particularly as a role player in what has been termed the ‘African Renaissance’. Devan is thus able to make use of multidisciplinary approaches in his projects and ventures.
Examples of Devan’s variety in his work and adaptability include the 2006 theatre production Lord Ganesha and the 2010 From Canefields to Freedom. Devan wrote and acted in Lord Ganesha, which had a successful run at the Joburg Theatre and Playhouse Company Durban. In 2010, Devan brought to life the remarkable book by Uma Dhupeli-Mesthrie, From Canefields to Freedom – A Chronicle of Indian South African Life, in an adaption for the theatre which he also acted in. From Canefields to Freedom was a successful dance drama about Indian labourers’ experiences as indentured servants in South Africa. In 2008, he wrote a children’s book based on Hindu Mythology called World of Hinduism – Enchanted Tales Based on Hindu Mythology. Devan has made short appearances in local TV productions like Generations and Isibaya.
Furthermore, Devan wrote and published an inspirational leadership diary for 2014 and 2015 called My Leadership Legacy Journal. He has worked on training material on topics such as conflict management, gender relations, and communications. His true passion is in the learning, training and development field, which has motivated him to co-write a book on diversity, released in July 2018.
Devan is a committed life-long learner. He is currently studying for a degree in Psychology with the South African Institute of Applied Psychology (SACAP). Having a keen interest in understanding the drivers of human behaviour, and a strong desire to continuously pursue his educational goals, Devan undertook this qualification. He has also completed several other national qualifications on Occupationally Directed Education, Training and Development Practices (ODETDP); Generic Management; Strategic Management; and Business Administration.
Devan conducts charity work which is funded by his company ICHAF. This includes scholarships and training initiatives including a tutoring and teacher programme to assist struggling students and educators who are taking strain in the schooling environment. In this regard, Devan stated in an interview, ‘The result of my work is enough reward for me – the individuals I work with, the progress I see in my students’ grades, the corporate learners who flourish after interventions and the children on welfare who no longer go hungry
Devan enjoys travelling and recently visited Nepal on a two-week meditation retreat. Other favourite destinations are Namibia for its wonderful wildlife and landscapes, India for its temples and culture, and Thailand for relaxation. Devan enjoys reading and spending time with his family at every opportunity. His primary residence is in Sandton, Gauteng and his second home is in Sea Point, Cape Town.