August is known as Women’s month in South Africa. It’s a time when we honour all women, but we particularly remember the women that marched to the Union Building on 9 August 1956 to contest the pass laws of the Apartheid regime. Their imprint on our collective psyche has brought the importance of honouring and celebrating women to the forefront.

Today, 65 years later we celebrate a national day dedicated to mothers, sisters, daughters, partners and friends, that through their feminine strength nurture, protect, educate and guide our nation. It is women that bring people together to form the collective ‘us’.

Women are facing huge challenges in our country and gender equality has by no means been achieved. Gender based violence, inequality in the workplace and the high rate of fatherless families are very much a reality and deserves our national attention.

Women are the backbone of our society, and their voices need to be heard. Join us in celebrating South African women this month but let’s not stop at celebration alone. We all have a role and responsibility to acknowledge and remedy the challenges that particularly economically challenged women in our society face. The Covid-19 pandemic has exacerbated the already untenable social circumstance of girls and women across the country.

We are challenging all South Africans to be mindful of what they can do in their own sphere of influence, to bring attention and remedy to the issues that women face. Let’s protect women, support women owned businesses, report abuse and give our daughters equal opportunities to succeed.

Women play an extremely vital role in society as they fulfil so many roles, both at home and in the workplace.  It is women who ensures the very continuity of human life, and we look both to men and women, to support the unheard female voices around us.

To all the women reading this, remember that you are strong, beautiful, compassionate and most of all, equal. May the month of August be yours, and may your growth and development reverberate through every day of the year. Happy Women’s Day!

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