We want to see South African girls and women blossom! – Yolande van Niekerk

by Feb 12, 2020Articles, Community Development, Sustainable Development Goal

I am not only a businesswoman. I am also a mum, a daughter, a friend, a global citizen, a fierce advocate for women’s rights and a fairy who cares deeply about all living creatures, big and small (my loves include our beautiful planet).

On a soul level, I want to help all mothers and daughters in our country to have the opportunity to become their best selves and to prosper.

To empower the women of South Africa to be truly equal and have great futures, I believe that divine intervention is needed at a very young age to break the cycle of feeling and believing that they are unworthy and inferior.

Did you know that neuroscience has proven that by the time a person is 35 years, our brains are nothing more than a program of set behaviours and habitual patterns? It is much easier to teach dignity to a young girl than an adult woman because of the hardwired patterns that our upbringing, culture and society have reinforced throughout our lifetime.

As you probably are aware by now, if I could have it my way, I would have waved my magic wand and solved the challenges instantly and we would all live happily ever after.

This is not possible… yet.

So, for now, Ibiliti has joined hands with the South African Council of Business Women (SACBW) and Blossom to help co-create a better future for young women.

About Blossom

In poor communities, menstruation carries the label of a dirty monthly event dressed in the invisible cloak of guilt and shame. Many girls don’t know about menstruation before they experience their first one. They are unprepared because they receive no information and training on how to manage it. On top of that, very few of our girls in lower-income groups have access to sanity towels, tampons, soap and clean water, disposal facilities or puberty education.

Blossom Care Solutions uses technology and material imported from India to manufacture affordable sanitary pads.

The three core reasons for Ibiliti to support this project

My daughter is 12. As her mom, it is my privilege to help her feel empowered and dignified throughout her lifetime. And we can do the same for all girls.

As a company, Ibiliti has decided to get involved in this project as we know our money will make the maximum difference possible. This project has massive potential because:

  • We are helping girls claim their education, equality and DIGNITY back. If we can teach our young women to have DIGNITY, they will be treated with DIGNITY because their deserve level will rise and teasing and shame will vanish!
  • We are supporting a South African initiative.
  • Blossom employs South African women to manufacture these pads.
  • We are considering the environment as the pads are completely biodegradable and 100% compostable.

The bottom line

The bottom line is that we want our girls to fully and equally participate in society with DIGNITY. Even if we make a successful difference in the life of one girl and help her to tap into her full potential, she could rise to be successful in her community, make a difference in her family and maybe create some jobs.

But in the long run, what we are really after is:

  • Creating awareness and dissolving the stigma hand in hand with the South African Council for Business Women (SACBW)
  • Asking people who are in positions of power in education etc to help us with conducting research and give us access to information so we can make a difference in the most impactful, sustainable and impactful way. But also identify other schools where girls need help the most.
  • We are inviting other companies and entities to join us on a larger scale and take part in the project so we can make a more significant impact.

Ibiliti, SACBW and Blossom will kickstart the project at Walter Sisulu Primary, a state primary school in Centurion this November 2019.

I firmly believe that when we invest in women, we are one step closer in eradicating poverty.

Are you with me?

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