In a month that celebrates the women of our country – the contribution to our freedom by the women of the 1956 March, the formidable women who have followed in their footsteps and those who are blazing a trail today – Proudly South African and Tsogo Sun was joined by some 100 female business leaders at an event held last week at 54 on Bath in Rosebank.
Their third collaboration for Women’s Month and under the hashtag #SheLeads, both Proudly SA and Tsogo Sun are committed to promoting the development of women-led businesses. Tsogo Sun’s Entrepreneur programme favours female-owned enterprises and many of Proudly SA’s SMME members are also companies that have been founded by women.
The gathering, which invites selected guests to dress ‘with a touch of class’ (preferably made in South Africa!), is an occasion on which women can relax, be recognised for their work, and can network with each other to strengthen their business ties with like-minded women.
This year’s entertainment was supplied by The Muses and Poppy Ntshongwana, Minnie Dlamini showcased her range of skincare products and 5 well-known business and media personalities removed their professional hats and spoke about their personal journeys in a panel discussion. The panel included Presidential spokesperson Khusela Diko, Idols judge and TV personality Unathi Nkayi, Newzroom Afrika co-founder Thabile Ngwato, business-women Candy Tothill of Tsogo Sun and the Manufacturing Circle’s Philippa Rodseth.
Commenting on the company’s focus on gender equality in the workforce, Candy Tothill, General Manager of Corporate Affairs for Tsogo Sun, says, “Tsogo Sun’s recognition of the role of women in business and in broader society, is demonstrated by the group’s gender equality figures – 53% of Tsogo Sun’s 16 000 employees are women and 26% of Tsogo Sun’s executives and senior managers”.
Tothill adds, “In addition to policies that entrench gender equality in the workplace, our Tsogo Sun Entrepreneur Programme supports 259 businesses across SA, of which 71% are women-owned, and the Miss Earth SA Leadership development programme empowers hundreds of young women to become environmental ambassadors and role models in society.”
Happy MaKhumalo Ngidi, Proudly SA’s Chief Executive Marketing & Communications affirms their commitment to empowering women and says, “Proudly SA as an organisation has a majority female staff complement and we, therefore, champion #SheLeads by setting the example. We are using this beautiful occasion to send a message of support to all women out there who are juggling busy home lives and careers – most of our guests were women who experience this every day, showing it can be done, but their struggle is real.”
The two organisations applaud the contingent of wonderful, accomplished women that were at the event, and hope together to encourage the upliftment and empowerment of women in business.
Guests enjoyed a delicious lunch menu, local wine and champagne and took away goodie bags full of Proudly South African products.