Written by her brother Yagen Naidoo
“With the current ratio of Asian donors on registers world-wide as low as it is (below 1% world-wide), being diagnosed with a disease like leukemia makes me realize that for us to have any chance at all to recover, we need to steadily increase the number of Indian/Asian donors within our communities, so that the chances of finding a matched donor increases significantly….even if we cannot influence some circumstances, we can act for the better of all humanity…I hope this message reaches out to your hearts to do what you can.”
– by Renuka Naiker in July 2004
Renuka, a Durban born human rights officer who served the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, was diagnosed with Leukaemia whilst visiting family in Durban with her 6 month old baby Keyan and husband of 13 years, Pragasen in January 2004. A dynamic individual who brought the World Conference on Racism to South Africa and actively served our country’s Swiss High Commission at the re-introduction of SA into the United Nations.
“Save a Life” campaigns on national radio, newspapers and magazines were a race against time over the period of Renuka’s struggle and her story had touched many people from all races and cultural divides.
Renuka was a kind and warm hearted person whom people gravitated toward her compassionate nature. The tributes that flowed in locally and from throughout the world bares testimony to the positive impact she had made to the lives she came in contact with.
Her desperate will to survive to see her only child walk to school was unfortunately short lived and lasted a mere 1 ½ years. Remembered for her humbleness, bravery and commitment to make a difference to humanity, Renuka will forever be missed by her loving family and dear friends.