Cell C has won the Corporate Citizenship Award as the Top Gender Empowered Company at yesterday’s Standard Bank TOP WOMEN Awards held in Johannesburg. The company also won the same award in 2014.
Cell C currently champions three programmes that act as catalysts to address women empowerment, education and employability. They are the Cell C Take a Girl Child to Work Day®; Cell C Girl Child Bursary Fund and Cell C Equitable ICT Access for Girls.
Says Suzette van der Merwe: Managing Executive Corporate Social Investment at Cell C: “Cell C has been committed to the advancement of women empowerment since inception and we will continue to make a meaningful contribution to accelerate sustainable socio-economic and gender transformation as we believe it is the key to South Africa’s future. We are delighted and humbled for our efforts to have been recognised by Standard Bank TOP WOMEN.”
Cell C’s Take a Girl Child to Work Day® was first introduced to the South African business community in 2003. Now in its 16th year, the initiative has enjoyed unrivalled success as a platform to address the needs and aspirations of girls of high school going age. For many, the day spent in the working world, shadowing top executives opens up a choice of career opportunities, inspiring girl children to reach heights of success that they never would have previously dreamed possible.
In 2013, Cell C launched the Girl Child Bursary Fund with the aim to continue the legacy of the Cell C Take a Girl Child to Work Day®. Cell C believes that offering bursaries provides a long-term investment in achieving the goal of empowering women in South Africa. It partners with The Tomorrow Trust, a South African based non-profit organisation that supports orphaned and vulnerable youth to achieve their educational goals.
As part of Cell C’s Equitable ICT Access for Girls, the company has partnered with HIVSA to support the Choma Dreams Café project, comprising 40 innovative youth hubs, which aim to reach vulnerable adolescent girls and young women with HIV prevention and vital online information and educational resources in a safe and friendly environment. Cell C has donated 100GB of data per Café per month as well as free usage of the online magazine, Choma, for all Cell C customers.
Since inception in 2014 Cell C has donated more than R30 million in kind towards MomConnect, a public-private partnership between the National Ministry of Health, by providing heavily discounted SMS and USSD support, contributing towards the free service used by 1.8 million South African mothers and mothers-to-be. It is the largest programme of its kind in the world.
Cemented as South Africa’s leading and preeminent initiative to honour the achievements and advocate the advancement of gender empowerment, Standard Bank TOP WOMEN celebrates their 15-year anniversary gathering South Africa’s most accomplished businesswomen and organisations accelerating gender transformation in the workplace.
Director of Standard Bank TOP WOMEN, Karla Fletcher: “We are devoted to providing the ultimate platform to address the challenges facing women-driven economic growth. Together with the CGE, our panel of judges and all those who have participated in the
Standard Bank TOP WOMEN Awards in the past 15 years, we represent a community that actively responds to the pertinent questions surrounding the barriers to success for women entrepreneurs. We are excited about the work and calibre of this year’s award winners and all the finalists. Their significant impact offers South Africa optimism for the future. Join us in celebrating their achievements in realising gender equality, and appreciating our shared goals to reaching democratic progress.”
The Corporate Citizenship Award was created to honour companies demonstrating the greatest positive impact on quality of life and economic prosperity for South African women and girls. The judges also looked for the impact such efforts have had on building a gender-empowered culture and spirit within the company itself.