The City of Ekurhuleni is leveraging the partnerships with other government departments and the private sector to break barriers that hinder young girls to enter male dominated work careers. As part of the initiative, the City hosted a symposium in partnership with the Gauteng Department of Education (GDE) and the private sector on between 13 and 14 August to enlighten young school girls that they can crack it in the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics career fields at the Alberton West Gallery Hall.
Women who are professionals and owns companies in these fields were invited to encourage the 150 high school girls in attendance. Some of the inspirational women who spoke to the young girls were Former Minister of Home Affairs, Professor Hlengiwe Mkhize who is a founder of the Nolwazi Foundation for Girls and a director of Women in Mobility IT Solutions and Training, and Ms Fikiswa Majola from Microsoft. Ms Majola is also a Chairperson of the Youth Empowerment in South Africa for the international non-profit organization, Duke of Edinburg.
One of the guest speakers at the event, Ms Lindiwe Dladla kaMkhonza, a Director of Chiefkazi Investment Port, ran a competition for the young girls to win a trip to accompany her to the United States of America for the sitting of the United Nation Commission on the status of Women in March 2019. Zaheeia Adam from Willowmore High School won the trip. Zaheeia said attending the symposium and having had an opportunity to listen to other women who have made it against odds was a motivation in itself, but getting the opportunity to sit with other imminent women at the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women was mind blowing.
Mr Jafta Mokoka from Extramarks Education SA interact with attendees, Akani Mathe from Lesiba Secondary School, Caitlyn Selli from Hans Moore Hoerskool and Mbali Mthethwa from Tlakula High School.