Women, rising up to the forefront of the economy is the African Agenda. We are in a country that is not immune to the global shift in the economic landscape and climate changes. We are observing rapid movements, where the 4th industrial revolution, among other things, is redefining what it means to earn a living and to become successful.
Already the impact of these changes is being felt within our circles and closer to home. We are at a time where we are seeing the highest numbers of retrenchments and companies downsizing, rightsizing and restructuring. We all know the language, but what does it actually mean for you and me?
I am sure you will agree with me that, this adversely contributes to the already staggering levels of unemployment in our country. In fact, South Africa’s unemployment rate is one of the highest in the world. It is consistently measured
above 20%. Ladies, needless to say, this is a national crisis. It’s a crisis that feeds two of the country’s biggest socio-
economic challenges: Poverty and inequality. It makes the future look bleak for our young girls and boys.
Inqolobane Yembokodo is an organization dedicated to bringing together individuals, Business and Organisations to look at innovative and forward thinking ways to change the school of though and disrupt the status quo. We have identified that there is a need for leaders in all sphere and platforms to move with agility. Truth is, none of us in this room can afford to be flat footed. There is a need for us to adapt and reinvent ourselves to keep up with the changing landscape. Greater effort and decisive interventions are needed to ensure that this is achieved.
We are tired of hearing all the stats that paint a picture of the number of women lagging behind in
leadership positions. Not only do we want to propel those numbers we want ownership and we want it
in this life time. We are bridging that gap. But where do we start? Sometimes we struggle to get the right place and right caliber of people who will guide/coach and mentor us.
I noticed through observation and personal experience that there are limited resources and forums that
cater for coaching and fully equipping women leaders in all spheres. It is behind this backdrop that Inqolobane Yembokodo Women Empowerment Forum is formed. “Inqolobane” is a word that means a storehouse, “Yembokodo” belongs to all the strength womanhood
It is a place where one is empowered and it can refer to a repository for information among other
things. Inqolobane is an organisation of prominent and significant women of diverse achievement who have
come together across national boundaries to share knowledge and ideas, enrich lives, provide a network
of support and exert influence to women in leadership or women who aspire to be in leadership spaces.
The forum is designed with the intent to equip influential businesswomen and leaders with the tools
they need to increase their leadership impact and create lasting personal and professional change.
Our vision is to be a resource that will equip women to increase their leadership impact and
advance to the forefront of the economy.
I am inspired by what our current Miss Universe, Ms Zozibini Tunzi, said when asked the most important
thing to teach young girls today. She said I quote “The most important thing we should be teaching young girls and women today is leadership….. we must teach them to take up space in society and cement themselves.”
Inqolobane Yembokodo is about grooming and enhancing the innate abilities in a woman, for her to function optimally and achieve success in every area of her life. #Everywomanaleader
We believe every women brings in a different dynamic into any space and thus we focus on what women have to contribute rather than how they need to change and adapt. The bible says, “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another!”, so we as Inqolobane Yembokodo are providing a platform for us to sharpen each other. Our aim is to inspire and equip women to create a strong leadership presence in all spheres of operations. Women who will be distinguished and unapologetic and purpose driven. It is to inspire and equip woman to create wealth and leave a legacy.
Inqolobane Yembokodo has wonderful programmes lined up for members throughout the year. We have leadership power camps 1 in May and another in August. The last event will be in November 2020.
We will also offer the following:
• Leadership Resources and Magazines online
• Young girl development project
• Coaching and Mentorship programmes
• Training and Development through our partnership with UKZN and other business schools.
Myself and 8 other incredible ladies drive this ship. We see Inqolobane as an aircraft carrier which is another form of repository for tools and equipment needed to check and refuel an aircraft and set it out to its destination.
– Sea representing uncertainty, waves instability (just like the uncertainty and instability of our economy)
Yet in the midst of that, carrier moves and flights can be launched from there.
– The aircraft is checked by various technical teams with different expertise yet all needed in
order to successfully launch and fly aircraft.
– To be noted that all this is a joint effort because umuntu umuntu ngabantu.
Now ladies we ask you to trust this aircraft carrier, to work together with us in shaping our lives and launching ourselves to various destinations and purposes that God created us to do in this earth. May every woman in this room fly high to their destiny, knowing that regardless of the uncertainty or failures, when there is a need to regroup and refuel and get help, Inqolobane yembokodo is there to offer that help.
This is a sisterhood, this is your safe space, may you grow with us and *fully become*.