In celebration of Women’s Day, on Tuesday 9 August Lalela hosted a morning tea at the Green Vine Eatery, Silvermist Mountain Lodge in Hout Bay for female Grade 8 learners from Imizamo Yethu and Hangberg who are enrolled in their Female Empowerment Programme, as well as the most significant female role model in their life.
Started in 2015, the Lalela Female Empowerment Programme consists of an experiential series of workshops to catalyse positive change within the young women and their communities. Lalela works with these learners to encourage them to remain in school, to empower them to have a voice and to develop a strong sense of self for their futures. The programme runs for six months each cycle and sees an average of 40 girls per year, two groups of 20.
“Lalela supports gender respect through our programmes, and over the years we have witnessed that from Grade 8 onwards, the dropout rate amongst the girls is significantly higher in comparison to the boys,” says Cat Rieper, COO of Lalela. “This is often because a girl’s education is not always seen as a priority within the communities we work in, and a lot of the time high school girls are expected to take on the role of caregiver for their younger siblings after school. We work with these young women to not only encourage them to remain in school, but develop the confidence to excel in their academics and the courage to dream beyond what is expected of them.”
Lalela’s Women’s Day event was to offer the Lalela Female Empowerment learners the opportunity to connect with and show appreciation to the influential and powerful women in their lives in an unforgettable way – whether their mother, sister, aunt, friend or member of their community that they look up to – and to make them feel special as women. The girls hosted the tables and created specially handcrafted and personalised gifts for their special guests and activities included speeches by various inspirational women including Casey B Dolan, Ann Nurock, Nwabisa Mayema, and Tony Gum, as well as entertainment by vocalist, Fiona Hare.
Each attendee was treated to coffee and cakes, as well as a goodie bag and prizes sponsored by a host of companies and private donors including Silvermist Mountain Lodge, Spice Route Chocolates, Elle magazine, Massimo’s Italian Restaurant, Sparkle SA, Pick n Pay Hout Bay, adidas South Africa, The One&Only Cape Town, Glamour magazine, CTM, Suikerbossie Restaurant, Brand Name Marketing, BR Casting Film & TV and Accounting Professional Training.
Lalela provides educational arts and social upliftment for at-risk youth to spark creative thinking and awaken the entrepreneurial spirit. For more information, or to see how you can get involved, please visit www.lalela.org or follow @Lalelaproject on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.