Category Archives: Africa
4 Girls About Girls is a mentorship campaign based in Soweto which was initiated to select a group of girls based in Protea South, North and Protea Glen . The program is designed to empower, educate and develop these ambitious girls through social development and community based projects that will build their self-esteem and self confidence as well as provide them with career assistance. The organisation has been involved in charity drives, old age home visits and fundraising events based around Soweto in collaboration with Protea South Methodist church. Currently, they are having another charity drive in Protea South and have identified a family that they will adopt and assist on monthly bases with clothes and food parcels.The community has also provided assistance with supporting the Nhlapho family with food and clothes. Production company Velocity Afrika has also been giving donations.
4 Girls About Girls was founded in January 2016 by Rephethile a young woman who has a passion for children and has been doing her best to mentor 10 high school student who are part of the program. The organisation will be part of the Student Expo that will take place on the 29th and 30th of July 2016 at the Glen in Johannesburg. As program gets bigger, there will be a need for more mentors and the criteria is quite simple:
+ Demonstrates a positive attitude and acts as a positive role model
+Compassion and genuineness
+ Have sincere desire to construct, empower, develop, build a relationship with mentees
+Have the ability to be a listen and speaker when expected
+Be sensitive to people of different educational, economic, cultural and racial backgrounds
+Ability to recommend alternatives and options
+Willingness to share skills and expertise
The program is for girls who have a clear understanding of their goals, motivated and ready to work at a relationship, be open minded and always willing to learn and proactive. At the moment 4 Girls About Girls could do with an additional mentor who would assist in preparing for potential events and assisting with organizing, planning and conceptualizing to generate exciting activities to allow the girls to engage more and be active more. 4 Girls About Girls vision is to invite more girls around Soweto who believe they owe it to the community to assist and be a leader. The girls have one main goal, the goal to be better and do better than their parents, they want their parents to be proud of their achievements and future plans . They have established themselves as different to the current youth but they’ve accepted their flaws and want to let go to become somebodies in their communities.
Having suffered and lived under the oppression of abuse and violence I always isolated myself from achieving what my heart desired, I was afraid to be at my best and do best, I was so consumed by low self-esteem and lack of confidence without blaming anyone With that being said the critical point that 4 Girls About Girls is sending out is that anything is possible even beyond all the negative situations that any person is forced into, anything is possible when you stay dedicated and passionate. I want these young girls to see themselves in me and even become better at everything they do, I want them to be able to stand firm for what they believe while achieving every little goal they desire or rather aspire to achieve. I want them to be go-getters without limitations or any excuses. I want my girls to inspire their peers and be a reflection of possibilities because I believe in them.- Rephethile
If you want to get involved you can contact the organisation:
Facebook Page: 4 Girls About Girls
Cellphone: 083 507 2758
With over 300 entries showcasing the latest trends in the world of fashion, the search for the next ELLE Style Reporter by ELLE in association with Orms & Canon, began. Through blog posts and storyboards, the stiff competition made the judges’ deliberation all the more difficult. Now, narrowed down to eight finalists, the best behind the lens will be awarded with the incredible opportunity to be the next ELLE Style Reporter.
The ELLE Style Reporter property was created just three years ago, crowning two successful winners, Trevor Stuurman and Niquita Bento; the announcement of the third winner is now just around the corner! With an ever-growing interest for local fashion in South Africa, the idea of the property was to find someone who’s perfectly attuned to what’s new on the streets and the catwalk. The winner should have an eye for fashion, be social media savvy and have the ability to narrate what’s on the ground through their lens. ELLE’s publisher Gisele Wertheim-Aymes says, ‘With the growth in social media, this really serves as an example that anything is possible and ELLE wanted to be the catalyst!’
The first winner Trevor Stuurman successfully created a niche in the industry by developing his own distinct trademark, and the second winner Niquita Bento, balances playful fashion quirks with interesting architecture through her lens as ELLE’s creative assistant. Together they prove that the ELLE Style Reporter is a sought after platform for emerging talent.This year again, the competition is powerful: ELLE Editor, Emilie Gambade says, ‘The eight finalists have really brought a unique point of view. A fresh look at ‘home-grown fashion & style’, away from the usual street style images we often see. Each of them brought something different and allowed for their own emotions, their personality to softly tint their work and imprint their images.’
The Finalists are:
CRAZY, SMART, WORKAHOLIC, DETERMINED, CHILLED BUT A LITTLE CRAZY!”
SIMZ MKHWANAZI, 25, DURBAN
“This will really have a positive impact on my career – This is only just a start to greatness!”
“I actually feel like I’m going to win this! (fingers and toes crossed). You feel me?”
“INVENTIVE, SPONTANEOUS, UNCONVENTIONAL, PERCEPTIVE, CURIOUS!”
YETUNDE DADA, 25, PRETORIA
“I’m really excited, as I feel that I’ve stepped into a different paradigm because I was a previous entrant in 2013 – managing only to get into the Top 20. Being part of the Top 8 now is a sign of growth for me and I’m ready to move forward! I feel that I have now focused on storytelling during my photography journey because I am a blogger who fell in love with photojournalism, fashion and writing at the same time a few years ago, and I think these things are elements in my work and helped with my selection for the Top 8.
“HUMBLE, CREATIVE, ADVENTUROUS, SMART AND COOL.”
THEMBA MBUYISA, 23, JOHANNESBURG
“Being a Style Reporter sounds like a cool thing to do actually. I feel cool!
This is something I’ve been doing for years, and I think I’ve been selected because there is someone out there who believes in my work and me as a creative person. I love what I do and I believe that it shows on my work!”
“ARTISTIC, AMBITIOUS, SOMEWHAT SASSY, TEA ADDICT, WITH PANACHE!”
GEMMA MARY SHEPHERD, 22, CAPE TOWN
“I feel honoured to be a finalist in this year’s competition given the high level of talent in South Africa at the moment.”
“I think I’ve been selected because I have both the photographic and writing skills to report artistically and journalistically on events and fashion trends in South Africa.
“FUN, STYLISH, YOUNG, CHRISTIAN MAN!”
LUNGILE JAMANI, 22, JOHANNESBURG.
“I am so excited and yet a bit nervous about being a finalist.
I think I’ve been selected because of my eye for style. The way I try to depict street style is most certainly not the same as the other – I’m probably one in a hundred
“PASSIONATE, CURIOUS, SENSITIVE, ARTISTIC AND ROMANTIC!”
NIKKI ZAKKAS, 24, JOHANNESBURG.
“A street style photographer for an inspiring fashion publication such as Elle would be a dream come true, combining my two studied interests: fashion and photography perfectly!
I think that I have been selected as a finalist because the role of street style reporter is uniquely suited to my educational background, putting my knowledge and skills in fashion and visual communication to good use.”
“CREATIVE, PASSIONATE, INTROVERT, HARDWORKING AND ECLECTIC!”
LUSANDA NDITA, 22, JOHANNESBURG
“I am thrilled to be one of the finalists, because this competition is a great platform to promote aspirating photographers like myself. I am looking forward to sharing my ideas on youth culture in my society.I think I have been selected because my photography explores a “home-grown” style characterized by fashion forward individuals.”
“‘ALWAYS HAPPY’ (CAN WE COUNT THAT AS ONE WORD HAHA), PASSIONATE, CONFIDENT, MOTIVATED, CONSCIOUS!”
SIBUSISO “ZEUS” FENI, 21, CAPE TOWN
“I am actually stocked, because it feels like I am in arms reach to achieving one of my biggest goals in life, which is shooting an Editorial for Elle Magazine!“I am doing the “money dance”!(Kevin Harts Dance) I think to be honest what Elle is looking for this year; best describes what I do on a daily basis, especially in terms of candid street style photography. Passion is another thing they looking for which I think they can see through my work.”
THE WINNER WILL RECEIVE: Announced on the 5th Of May in Newtown Johannesburg
· An exclusive one-on-one session with acclaimed photographer, Ed Suter
· A Canon EOS 6D DSLR with EF 24-105mm f/3.5-5.6 is STM lens to the value of
· R30 995, courtesy of Orms & Canon
· A monthly stipend of R5 000, from July – December 2016 in his/her capacity as the 2016 ELLE Style Reporter
· The opportunity to tell their stories through the pages of ELLE, creating content for all platforms under the leadership and guidance of the editorial team and the editor Emilie Gambade.
Watch! ELLE Editor Emilie Gambade, ELLE Fashion Director Tarryn Oppel and ELLE Contributing Editor Malibongwe Tyilo on more of the juicy details here:
On the 28th of April, the finalists will be treated to a technical workshop, under the leadership of sponsors Orms & Canon. There, they will also have one-on-one time with the judges before the final deliberation is made. The journey will culminate on the 5th of May at the Workshop in Newtown, Johannesburg.
TO FOLLOW THE JOURNEY, STAY TUNED TO: www.elle.co.za/enter-elle-style-reporter-2016-2/
Tweet who you think will win: @ELLEMagazineSA
TAGS: #ESR2016 #OrmsandCanon
It has been a great pleasure watching Zamaswazi growing his brand. The amount of growth that has impacted his brand was evident at last weekend at South African Fashion Week for the GQ Scouting Menswear Competition. Although he did not win the competition, I know for a fact that he impressed a lot of people with his attention to detail and his unique suits. The detailing of the print and the pleats as well as some strings(if I may call it that) made the collection very interesting to me. Truth be told; I definitely would not mind wearing a Zamaswazi suit. It warms my heart when I see young Africans succeeding and being a step closer to realizing their dreams. Most important I am happy to see that Zamaswazi has really grown, our conversations about his brand have really changed since he first began. I have high hope for this young man and I cannot wait to see what milestone he climbs next.
Photo credit: Planet Ivan
The Mermaid Awakens Her Warrior is a great underwater shoot conceptualized and directed by Fuaad Abdool in collaboration with amazing young African women. From what I gathered the story line is that of love. the mermaid wonders deep into the ocean where she meets the warrior, motionless and she radiates her energy into him thus awakening him. The project was a way of combining and illustrating the artistic skills of South African female creatives and more over Fuaad wanted to change the perspective of how people view mermaids. He says that he couldn’t find images of black mermaids so he wanted to create a modern rendition of mermaids and challenge the perception of how mermaids are supposed to look like.
This was model Bianca Koyabe’s first underwater modelling shoot and I personally think she looked great and she absolutely nailed. The mermaid costume was designed by 21 year old fashion designer Savannah Caster who had never made mermaid costumes before. Humiraa Mahomeds had never done body art for an underwater shoot before and she used eye-liner to draw the tattoos of the warrior. She had me believing that the warrior actually had tattoos. I give her a thumbs up for that.
I was introduced to Imprint By Mzukisi Mbane last year at SA Menswear Week in Cape Town and I have been hooked ever since. I love the way Mzukisi styles his look books and how he takes you to places. The choice of models is always the perfect fit, on Haboring Hope he works with Corine and Lesala Mampa.
Clothing : Imprint
Stylist : Mzukisi Mbane
Models: Corine (female) and Lesala Mampa (male)
Photographer : Dylan Louw
MUA : Prada
Haboring Hope is a collection inspired and dedicated to changing and challenging the concept of menswear and the meaning of being a men in Africa in a very beautiful, calm and less dramatic way.
Last season we started on a journey, creating gender bending looks. Also referred to as unisex. Inspired by the woman who gave birth to us all. This season we are still on that same gender bending tip. But this time inspiration is taken from various cultural group as well as religious group. Translating this in a more edgy, futuristic and clean way.- Mzukisi Mbane- Founder & Creative Director
Mzukisi the Creative Director of Imprint says Haboring Hope is unapologetic and it is definitely not about fitting in, it’s simply about being you and it is peaceful and calm. In creating this collection, he says he was taken to a place where creativity is limitless and I can surely see that from his collection. You are immediately drawn in by how simple yet unique his designs are and the combination is just RIGHT.
I found myself having this freedom. I got taken to a place where creativity was basically limitless. I became free to challenge the very idea of what menswear is (to the society). How it is supposed to be constructed, the silhouettes and well which lines to cross. In this collection you see me playing around with a lot of geometric shapes. Most shapes taken from a deconstructed a – line skirt.I also found my self challenging and exploring the term over-sized and fitted. I was able to just create and have that “so what” attitude. I wanted to tell the story of believing in your dreams and who you are from a different side. A side where you don’t have to fight. Aside of beauty and peace.- Mzukisi
“Hope on bravely”
Project Street Style 24hrs is a fashion projects by Ray Geof, a Street Style Reporter and Fashion Blogger from Francistown Botswana. Ray started the project because he believes that fashion is 24 hours. He has been having fun capturing the creative and stylish people of Botswana.
I started it because i want to showcase authentic & real everyday to day fashion of the people of Botswana.The streets never lie and fashion on the street is raw its not like of high fashion editorials which is over styled- Ray Geof
Creative graphic designer Rendani Nemakhavhani and photographer Kgomotso Neto have been serving us some visual pleasures with a series called All Hail The Honey. I have absolutely enjoyed all the 3 chapters and I cannot wait for more to follow. The series started off with the Honey (Rendani) in water and with a whip and of course it is interesting and we were intrigued and hoping for more. The narratives are very interesting and keep the audience up to date with the story. And they got me adding some of my own in the story.
As black girls we can relate to the 2nd chapter of All Hail The Honey series- The Hair Struggle. Our hair has suffered a lot from relaxers, braiding, weaves and plaiting. It is a struggle that. The Honey says that everyone should know that black hair shrinks in hair, it really does. Once you get your hair ‘DID’ you really avoid water because it all goes down and goes back to being nappy (But we still love it nonetheless)
We all dread those salon visits but they have to be done so we can keep our hair “fly” and most importantly healthy.
In the 3rd chapter Kgomotso steps in front of the lens to star as Gavini in a story inspired by Yizo Yizo. A story of love in the township, that kind of “Skhanda love” if you will. The visuals are absolutely amazing and they really did a good job.
The duo keep it real all the time and most of us can relate to their series. On being real Rendani has the following to say:
Real is always what I aim to show off in the work that I produce. That is exactly how I want the work to be received as genuine. I don’t believe in fronting about what I’m selling. In The Honey series we are selling you what makes up a typical outfit for most girls. We don’t necessarily buy everything that we have (from fancy shops). People must also know that when black hair meets water it shrinks. It’s just a matter of understanding the basics of how you make what you have work.
To follow more of their work go to allhailthehoney.tumblr.com
I am so happy to announce that a couple of awesome human beings and I have been selected as Tropics Voices Ambassadors by South African based media group called Tropics Media.We will be sharing our stories on http://www.tropics-magazine.com stay tuned and follow our articles on different topics.
So while researching on African Cultures for my blog series I decided to add a segment on business in Africa. Businessman and creative Jermaine Charles tells us how Entrepreneurship began in his family. As Africans we have always been entrepreneurs.
The Culture of Entreprenuership – A Perspective
Written By Jermaine Charles @charlesjaymr on twitter
Charity Begins at Home.
Umuntu ngumuntu ngabantu.
These two sayings have been heard by everyone at least once in their lifetimes.
These two philosophies are as meaningful as they are powerful.
These words give us more than just food for thought but inspire many to action.
Given that most of us grew up hearing them, why have these thoughts not inspired a culture of entrepreneurship?
Could the mindset around creating and starting a business be formulated using these sayings?
This got me thinking about my family history.
I grew up in Zimbabwe and from a very early age was exposed to entrepreneurship.
My maternal grandfather, Solomon Tshuma, ran and operated his own businesses, namely a butchery and a grocery store.
Although he and my grandmother Elizabeth Moyo were qualified teachers, as the Rhodesian regime did not allow for them to be trained in a variety of careers, they made the transition from workers to business owners.
My mother Tembi, told me that her fathers’ first business idea was selling dried fish from Malawi. (My great grandparents actually came from there before they moved to what was then called Rhodesia).
The story has it that he saved some money, hired a truck and drove a few 1000 kilometres to Malawi and bought tons of dried fish.
He brought these back and sold them out of the back of the truck in his community with my grandmother.
He became a successful business person because of the community, his networks and the support of his family. He did not make it alone. He was a true reflection of the saying ‘Umuntungumuntungabantu.’
Furthermore, from that initial investment and risk they went on to build a business that put their six children through the best schools they could.
It also enabled my grandfather to satisfy his passion for American cars. I’ve seen old pictures of some of his cars, ranging from Cadillacs to Fords, with a lot of envy in my heart.
How does this relate to Charity Begins at Home?
My aunts and uncles learned that with calculate risk there is a reward.
No one will give you permission to create your own wealth or life.
Even in apartheid they saw that they could still do more than what the imposed boundaries seemed to dictate.
All of his children worked for the business and learned business principles early on.
When he went into exile due to his involvement in the liberation struggle, his eldest son took over the business.
Had it been a more progressive time his eldest daughter, who was both street and business smart would have done so.
The rest of his siblings went on to start their own businesses too.
My uncle Steven became a qualified mechanic and now runs his own car dealership and service garage.
My mother worked in banking and was the first person I ever hear utter the words ‘business plan’.
Later in life she ventured into service businesses and tourism in a country she was not born in.
My dad Felix was also latter to become a business person as the economy was unravelling. He came from a family where the men and women could make, repair, grow and create things with their hands, with what they had.
I learned the same lessons from his mother who raised chickens and sold them in Mpopoma, Bulawayo.
I am a third generation entrepreneur and I am thankful for the example of my parents and grandparents.
So in essence, we can begin to create the culture of entrepreneurship if we start to recognize what and how our grandparents helped put food on the table.
It is time we started asking the elders to teach us what they learned and how they earned whether they had business licences or not.
Surely some did not even think to call it business, just survival.
Because although businesses might be different, the principles are the same.
Thokoza Dlozi could not have come at a better time. It came at a time when I am busy with the African cultures blog series that seeks to explore African cultures, the similarities and the differences. I had made a space for a blog post on African medicine so I was really elated when Vus started his Thokoza Dlozi campaign.
Why am I doing it? Because I’m tired of hiding my beliefs. Of treating African spirituality as a caricature so that I don’t seem primitive. I am not a sangoma but I have a deep love and appreciation of African spirituality. I do not hate anyone’s religion. I am simply unable to relate. creative and as a storyteller, it is imperative that I tell the this particular story.- Vus Ngxande
Vus feels that as much as we can come on social media and read bible verse after verse, we must also be able to share and proclaim our beliefs as well. To let African spirituality fade away simply it makes others uncomfortable is to let the very foundation of Africa to die. I totally agree with Vus, as Africans there are customs and things that were done in the past that we no longer do in an effort to look more modern. It is really important for the young Africans to go back to basics. Being African to me personally means accepting and embracing and respecting all thing Africans (even the things that I do not understand or have never been exposed to).
As his concluding words Vus thanks aboGogo and aboMkhulu who he believes have a heavy burden to be a pillar in a society that despises them. But, we curse the light during the day but, when the darkness falls, we will turn to the light you carry. He wish them God’s strength. Some people have said Vus to be wrong for sharing the images on Facebook because they view the ceremonies as private but he has explained that Sangoma or Ukuthwasa ceremonies are attended by the community. Personally I think that some people are rather embarrassed so there would rather not have the Thokoza Dlozi images on their lily white social media platforms.
Let me say this, #ThokozaDlozi was never simply about ubuNgoma. I am not a sangoma. But it is my duty to tell these stories. This project was about speaking freely about African spirituality. The notion that these practices are private or secret is precisely why our beliefs are dying. When don’t talk about African spirituality, EVER. Not even around a braai because we think people will judge us. We treat it with disgust and scorn because we believe it makes people around us uncomfortable.Yet, we expect it to live. To carry itself from generation to generation. We cry that black children don’t know who they are. We need to gain a better understanding of ourselves. Those who have this knowledge are not just old grandfathers and grannies. We have our peers, our age, who have been chosen to carry this knowledge. All we need do is ask, talk. We were born in this time to help rebuild this continent not just socio-economically but spiritually too. IF WE DON’T TELL OUR OWN STORIES THEN WHO WILL?- Vus Ngxande
Spirituality is not a competition. It is not a game of numbers. Maybe religion is, but spirituality is not. I do not hate anyone’s beliefs. I love mine. #Thokozani