Every August 9th, South Africa commemorates a significant era in the country’s political journey, a historic 65 years ago when 20,000 women marched to the Union Buildings in Pretoria to enact the apartheid government against the passage of laws that the movement segregated and restricted by blacks in urban areas. The significance of this march is to this day a moment of reflection as the country looks back and recognizes its courageous efforts to commemorate one of South Africa’s strongest moments in our history. An example of the power and influence of South African women in society.
“Women continue to make waves in whatever spaces they occupy. At the end of the Women’s Month, Brand South Africa is honoring the positive influence of three South African women with a campaign called “Celebrating Women of Substance”. The campaign advances Dr. Spotlight on Sophie De Bruyn, the last living leader and member of that fateful march of 1956; Reigning Miss South Africa and Play Your Part Ambassador, Shudufhadzo Musida; and creative artist Mmabatho Montsho. These trailblazers do remarkable work in advancing women in various fields. We hope to rekindle the passion and courageous action of our women at home and abroad, to do their part to present ourselves and to fly the South African flag, “says Jimmy Ranamane, Acting General Manager of Brand South Africa: Global Markets.
Dr. Sophie De Bruyn embodies the spirit of leading by example. Together with Lilian Ngoyi, Rahima Moosa, Helen Joseph and Albertina Sisulu, who have all since passed away, Dr. De Bruyn at the forefront of this historic march. She has dedicated her life to fighting the oppression of marginalized groups and continues to advocate women’s rights by saying: “We are mothers of both victims and perpetrators of violence. We bear the brunt of the destruction and income from violence. ”She encourages South Africans to continue to find ways to address the challenges women face, particularly those related to gender-based violence.
Shudufhadzo Musida, a mental health campaigner who partnered with the South African Depression and Anxiety Group (SADAG) and Discovery Vitality to launch an online mental health initiative #MindfulMondays. In her recently published book, Shudu Finds Her Magic, in collaboration with Miss South Africa, Musida tells an inspiring story of how she overcame her sadness and some of life’s difficulties from childhood, as a teenage girl, and into a woman who learned to love herself. “Empowering a girl’s mind through education as a tool will help build a society with empowered women who will pay, break harmful cycles, and restore new and improved avenues to holistic health and wellbeing,” says Musida.
Mmabatho Montsho is undoubtedly one of the most talented artists in South Africa. A storytelling genius, successful entrepreneur, fashion designer, filmmaker, screenwriter and visual artist, Montsho will direct the international short film ‘Desmond’s not here Anymore’. The film is based on the award-winning screenplay by Lindiwe Suttle Müller-Westernhagen. She, too, hoists the South African flag while working in the film with Hollywood actors S. Epatha Merkerson and Yolonda Ross.
It is obvious that the three phenomenal women are not only women with substance, but are also pillars of the Brand Nation and continue to shape the perception of the country on the international stage. In this regard, we call on South African women and men to answer the call of our three heroines and do their part to become model citizens and ambassadors of the country while they continue to work, live and travel abroad.
About brand South Africa
Brand South Africa is South Africa’s official marketing agency with a mandate to build the country’s reputation to improve its global competitiveness. Its aim is also to instill pride and patriotism among South Africans to contribute to social cohesion and brand ambassadors for the nation.
About play your part
Play Your Part is a nationwide program created to inspire, empower and celebrate active citizenship in South Africa. It aims to lift the spirit of our nation by inspiring all South Africans to contribute to positive change, get involved and start. A nation of people who care deeply for one another and the environment in which they live is good for all.
Play Your Part is aimed at all South Africans – from companies and individuals, NGOs and governments, churches and schools, from the young to the less young. It aims to encourage South Africans to use some of their time, money, skills, or goods to contribute to a better future for all.