The Coega Development Corporation (Coega) in partnership with the Government Communication and Information System (GCIS), this week, hosted a Women’s Empowerment Expo at the Coega Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) Park Auditorium to inform and empower young women before they embark on further education, training and/or entrepreneurship.
The event formed part of Women’s Month activities, in line with this year’s theme of “Accelerating Socio-economic Opportunities for Women Empowerment.” This Expo follows Coega’s prestigious award of excellence in the Skills Education and Training category at the African Business Awards, in Sandton, north of Johannesburg on 17 August 2023.
The event provided 120 Grade 12 female learners, from Walmer High School, vital information about career, training, bursary, and funding opportunities from various stakeholders, including the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA), SA Youth Harambee, Transnet Freight and Rail, and the Coega Development Corporation. The programme concluded with a guided tour of the 9003ha Coega Special Economic Zone, exposing learners to key economic sectors and potential careers within these sectors.
According to Zukiswa Mqumbisa, GCIS Regional Communication Coordinator, “the inspiration behind this Expo stemmed from the fruitful collaboration between GCIS and Coega during the Youth Empowerment Expo in June to commemorate Youth Month. Recognising the value of collective efforts, the decision was made to extend this partnership into Women’s Month, aiming to collectively uplift young women through the Women Empowerment Expo. This event stood as a beacon of information, education, and opportunity for aspiring young minds.”
Women’s Month underscores the significance of elevating and providing comprehensive support to women from all walks of life. It serves as a poignant reminder of the continuous endeavours aimed at engendering an environment of inclusivity and parity, wherein women are enabled to robustly engage, assume leadership roles, and effectively articulate their perspectives.
Sandra Chinaka, Coega Skills Development Facilitator, shared Coega’s role in equipping young people with the necessary training, in line with Coega’s vision to be a catalyst for the championing of socio-economic development, “the Coega Skills Development Centre has been instrumental in empowering unemployed individuals by enhancing their skill sets and competencies.”
One of the learners, Sosulwe Tyuka, from Walmer High School, expressed her gratitude, “We are grateful for the opportunity to explore potential career paths and learn about different sectors within Coega Special Economic Zone. This Expo has exposed us to various opportunities that can guide our university and career choices.”
Coega’s partnership with GCIS underscores the significance of strategic collaborations in fostering positive transformation in society. As an organisation committed to empowerment, Coega continues to pave the way for women to seize socio-economic opportunities, thereby catalysing progress and growth.