UCT’s Women’s Day celebration event

03 August 2020 | From Kgethi

Dear colleagues and students

On 9 August 1956, about 20 000 women marched to the Union Buildings in Pretoria to present to the then prime minister a petition against the carrying of passes by women. Sixty-four years later, we continue to honour them while recognising the current generation of womxn in South Africa as well by commemorating Women’s Day on this date. We celebrate the many achievements of womxn throughout the month of August.

When I started as Vice-Chancellor two years ago, I was determined to create more opportunities for womxn and thus, I launched the For Womxn By Womxn research grants. These grants focus on training postgraduates and postdoctoral fellows, with an emphasis on building capacity among black South African women and transgender researchers.

While we, and the world, are still fighting against the direct and indirect consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, we must continue to celebrate the achievements of the womxn at UCT and support and inspire one another.

As such, and to commemorate this important month, we will be hosting a virtual Women’s Day event. The programme will include womxn who are at the top of their fields. Our chancellor, Dr Precious Moloi-Motsepe will present the keynote address and our chair of Council, Ms Babalwa Ngonyama, will deliver closing remarks and a vote of thanks.

Recipients of the For Womxn By Womxn research grants – Professor Floretta Boonzaier, Professor Janet Hapgood and Dr Katye Altieri – will also update us on their interesting research projects which range from shifting how we do research around gender-based violence, to contraception and HIV risk of women in sub-Saharan Africa, and building capacity in the field of oceanography.

The event is set to be a celebratory one and I am excited to have renowned writer, performer and poet Siphokazi Jonas joining us for a special performance.

Please join us as we reflect on what it means to be a womxn in South Africa and celebrate our achievements.

When: Thursday, 13 August 2020

Time: 13:00 SAST

Platform: Microsoft Teams

Please register online to attend the virtual event.


Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng

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