10 Days of mourning for Mandela

first_imgAs we share in our grief and celebrate his life, let’s pass on our support to Madiba’s family. You can post a personal message via the Nelson Mandela Foundation or add your tributes and memories on the official South African government Facebook page.  For the official services and funeral arrangements, information will be updated here regularly.Press release 13 December: Heads of State and Government to attend State Funeral Service in Qunu, Eastern CapePress release 8 December:  Nelson Mandela State Funeral UpdatePress release 9 December: The board of Brand South Africa pay respect to Nelson Rolihlahla MandelaProgramme for memorial at FNB stadium [PDF, 1.16Mb]Nelson Mandela Family StatementCity of Tshwane: The World descends upon Tshwane as  South Africa’s Capital City prepares to receive and host President Mandela’s mortal remainsTribute by President Jacob ZumaGovernment has recognised the overwhelming response of the nation to the passing of former President Nelson Mandela.  We thank the nation for responding to the call to sign condolence books at various sites and for posting messages of support to social networking sites.We have introduced a further option through which messages of love and support could be expressed on 0800 314 446.  Your messages will be recorded, shared with the family and the President and archived for further generations.Play your Part by celebrating and honouring the life’s work of our dearly departed Tata Madiba.Click here for larger versionlast_img read more

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Preparing for the future world of work through STEM

first_imgEducation is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. – Nelson Mandela These words ring true now more than ever as South Africa, as with the rest of world, experiences and transitions into a radical period of change presented by the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR). A period which necessitates everyone to be open to learning, re-learning and discovery. The World Economic Forum (WEF) describes the 4th industrial revolution as the advent of “cyber-physical systems” involving entirely new capabilities for people and machines. It represents entirely new ways in which technology becomes embedded within societies and even our human bodies. Man vs Machine or Machine working for Mankind? With all these big words and terms associated with the imminent 4th Industrial Revolution being spoken about… robotics, artificial intelligence (AI), big data, cyber, crypto… may make the ‘giant leap’ into the digital era an intimidating exercise for many.  However daunting, the digital era presents a myriad of opportunities for innovation and technological advancement for South Africa as an enabler of human and skills development, business driver and economic growth. Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies, Ms Stella Ndabeni–Abrahams, has been actively driving the message on 4IR and laying the foundation to build a capable and skilled work force. At the heart of 4IR is human centred focus and we need to ensure an inclusive process to ensure no one is left behind, she said. We shine the spotlight on an organisation that is playing its part in the education field and making great strides to arm young girls from previously disadvantaged communities with the required skills for the future world of work through mentorship, empowerment programmes and exposure to Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects and related careers. Technogirl Trust The TechnoGirl Trust exists to deal with South Africa’s skills shortage in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) by encouraging girls to choose STEM subjects in high school. Girls from Grade 9 onwards from disadvantaged communities are placed in corporate mentorship and job shadowing programmes. Since inception in 2005, more than 11,000 girls have benefitted from the programme.  Brand South Africa recently joined the Technogirl Trust for the Young Women for STEM in Africa programme in partnership with the University of Johannesburg (UJ). Liana Meadon, Senior Manager: Academic Development Centre stated that the partnership is driven by efforts to close the gender gap in STEM and the programme provided a great platform to motivate and inspire young women to take up careers in the STEM field. The young girls also had the privilege to hear from Dr Tebogo Mashifana, a young woman who is a Senior Lecturer at UJ’s Department of Chemical Engineering Technology, nominee of the 2019 Mail & Guardian Top 200 Young South Africans and motivational speaker making waves in the STEM field. She inspired the girls, telling them that they are capable of achieving anything they put their minds to and shouldn’t let their backgrounds define their destiny. “I look at you and see future engineers, future scientists, and future leaders in the 4th industrial revolution”, she said. Dr Mashifana concluded by telling the learners that the world is rapidly changing and education and hard work are key to a brighter future. The interest and participation in STEM will set them apart and enable them to participate in mainstream careers of the future as digitalisation and the future world of work will be driven by those equipped in the STEM field.  The technology driven future affords us the opportunity to redefine our society and explore the future of a digitally enabled economy and countries transformation that is fair, inclusive, sustainable and competitive. As Brand South Africa, we encourage all citizens, not only the youth, to actively get involved in the 4IR and digital economy dialogue and skills development initiatives. It’s not only for government or businesses to adopt and master the digital era, but for all to take part, benefit and contribute towards the growth of the economy and SA’s competiveness.last_img read more

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The Long-playing singles

first_imgSingle is the new sexy. Gone are the days to flaunt that chunky solitaire announcing you’re hitched, now it’s the free birds attracting envious glances when they walk in with the flavour of the month. However, everything said and done, it’s quite difficult to avoid one question when you sport,Single is the new sexy. Gone are the days to flaunt that chunky solitaire announcing you’re hitched, now it’s the free birds attracting envious glances when they walk in with the flavour of the month. However, everything said and done, it’s quite difficult to avoid one question when you sport the ‘single’ tag after hitting 30. By choice or compulsion, the debate will continue forever. For some it is the wait for the perfect partner that shelved marriage plans and others have taken a deliberate decision. Whatever it is, they seem to be happy and content.Sunder RamuSunder Ramu, 36, Fashion photographerSunder is perhaps the nicest guy you can hope to meet. Of course when you are the city’s foremost fashion photographer (he has shot the gorgeous cover picture so you can judge for yourself!) working with hot models throughout the year you can afford to share some of that cheer. Considering the sexy models, it’s hard to believe he’s single. Does he like playing the field? Sunder says “Chennai is a very small town; you honestly can’t afford to mess around. It’s the same people in the social circles and you do not want to get things that complicated for yourself.” He steers clear of flings for the same reason and to fill the gap he travels with gorgeous women to the most exotic locales. “It’s impulsive I know, but last year barely after a couple of calls and emails I ended up meeting a friend at the Milan station and we toured the whole of Europe together.” A through-and-through romantic who actually likes candlelight dinners he muses “I don’t believe in the whole “You complete me” concept. You need to be complete and at peace with yourself only then can you let someone into your life. I’m waiting for that girl who will bowl me over or quietly sneak into my life”. We sigh along with him.Kaveri LalchandKaveri Lalchand, 37 Director, Blaft publicationsKaveri, director of Blaft publications, is undoubtedly the smartest single woman in the city. Where are all the men who keep insisting they want a beauty with brains we wonder? “I’m single because I am” she shrugs. “It’s not a conscious choice and when I meet a nice guy I am not averse to considering getting into a relationship.” Walking into a party alone, family pressure and lonely nights can be dispelled with the right companion we agree. Kaveri is a bit exasperated that we’re making being single cut out to be a boring affair and goes on to explain, “I have a chocolate ice-cream theory that I follow: Chocolate ice-cream makes me happy. When the chocolate icecream is all gone, I am still happy. All the time! Ice-cream or no ice-cream.” We ask her if settling down in the near future is on the cards. “Settle down”? Nope! Will never settle and never settle down. I want to fly, explore, taste new things, go on wild adventures, and sure, with a partner in crime-would make it twice the fun!” We couldn’t have said it better.Poongkothai ChandrahasanPoongkothai Chandrahasan, 30, Model and documentary filmmakerWith her beatific smile, flawless face and desirable figure it is difficult to imagine men who wouldn’t want to date her. A friend of hers rightly interrupts to say, “There are no lack of suitors; it’s a case of plenty!” Poongkothai explains, “I am just back from travelling all across the world for the NGO (Offer) I work with. Tomorrow if I need to do that again and I’m married I don’t think it would go down too well. I wear too many hats, I am juggling too many balls in the air and I don’t have the time to invest in a relationship.” Even though she’s not a party animal who is out about town every night, men still get insecure and are intimidated by the fact that she’s independent and doesn’t need them.”Once you’re in a relationship questions are bound to creep. Honestly that is not a box I want to enter”, she smiles.Milind RauMilind Rau, 31, Film directorMilind, after assisting Mani Ratnam in films like Guru, has come on his own as a director with Kaadhal to Kalyanam. He refused to believe this was an actual interview and expected someone to jump out from behind him and say it?fs a prank. Warily looking around he says “I’m still in the process of finishing my film and I haven’t found the right person yet. Though if I did find one I’d have no problems committing.” Kaadhal to Kalyanam is one of the most awaited flicks set to release early 2011 and we can see that for now work is his lady love. “See, when you’re single you can work at your priorities. Yes you do feel a bit lonely because you’re 30 plus and see your friends getting married and settling down. You wish you had someone to fill as your ‘plus one’.” Loneliness must be a tough rope to walk we say to which Milind laughs ‘I’m single, not a saint!” Amen. Other singlesTishani Doshi, 34, AuthorReema Sen, 29, ActressShobhana, 40, ActressArya, 31, ActorVishal, 33 Actoradvertisementadvertisementlast_img read more

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