Women empowerment champion bags top awards

Buhlungu, who boasts of vast experience in the development and social entrepreneurship space, is also nominated for other coming awards before year ends.

Women emancipation champion Sibonokuhle Buhlungu — who is the founder and CEO of Empowered Women, a progressive business membership organisation for over 500 women — is capping what has been an industrious year with top accolades from the Christian Women Entrepreneurs Network Africa (CWENA) and the Zimbabwe CEO’s Network awarded in South Africa and Zimbabwe respectively.

Buhlungu, who boasts of vast experience in the development and social entrepreneurship space, is also nominated for other coming awards before year ends.

“My goal is to ensure that every woman is empowered enough to self-sustain and live her dreams,” she said.

“Patriarchy has dealt women a huge blow for years and I am happy to be part of a generation that is doing all it takes to emancipate women.

“The recent awards that I have been accorded are a big challenge and motivation for me to continue giving my best in service to my fellow women.

“I believe in the power of working together and I am happy that Empowered Women is fast becoming a force in providing homegrown solutions to challenges bedeviling the generally disadvantaged women.”

The CWENA award, which Buhlungu received at a recent regional conference in Sandton, South Africa, acknowledged her use of social media to inspire excellence and productivity while the Social Enterprise award was in view of her strides with Empowered Women.

“Empowered Women is a membership-based network of women drawn from different sectors internationally,” Buhlungu said.

“The women centered organisation was born out of my passion of empowering women and I am happy that the impact is being felt in Zimbabwe and across the region.

“The network aims to collaborate the efforts of different women and denounce the notion that women cannot support each other.

“We have achieved a lot within a short space of time and I am encouraged by our strides to date.” 

The organisation espouses the highest level of corporate governance and is managed by a board of trustees who direct policy and ensure that the highest levels of professionalism are upheld.

“The board of trustees is ably assisted by a team of executive members in ensuring that there is effective implementation of programmes and activities aimed at fostering excellence and productivity amongst the membership,” Buhlungu said.

“We are a diverse group that covers women in farming, women in construction, government employees, women in mining, entrepreneurs, women lawyers, women doctors, property owners, creatives and women caterers to name a few.”

Empowered Women membership is open to all progressive women that aspire to be the best and rise above their limitations.

Through ideas and experience sharing, the organisation has become home to some of the most innovative and entrepreneurial women.

As the organisation continues on its progressive trajectory, they will be hosting an international conference and awards night from November 24 to 25 at the Rainbow Towers Hotel.

“The international conference and awards event is open to all progressive women and we have pegged the ticket to the two-day event at a modest US$120, including meals, but those that want to attend the conference only can opt for the $60 ticket,” Buhlungu said.

“We have delegations coming from as far as India as well as the Sadc region and some parts of East Africa.

“We are super excited about this event and we believe it’s a good way to end our 2023 programmes year.”

The organisation, which prides itself in ensuring sustainable empowerment of women through tailor-made and market tested programmes that inspire excellence and productivity, has continued to score major milestones and recently partnered the Organisation for Women in International Trade Zimbabwe and Ecobank Zimbabwe for a fully subscribed Open Market Day and Exhibition.

“We want to collaborate women’s efforts with a view to create opportunities for partnership, empower women with skills to run businesses, create income generating projects for women and build a network of financially independent women,” Buhlungu said.

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