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27 August 2018 Photo Sonia Small
Prof Thuli Madonsela persuades women to pursue their purpose
Discovering that she was “pretty” for her purpose gave Prof-Adv Thuli Madonsela’s life direction.

What does embracing womanhood mean? For Prof Thuli Madonsela it is about loving yourself and whatever you believe is your purpose in life. 

“All of us are designed for our purpose and are fit for our purpose, you should embrace that and make the best of it,” said South Africa’s former Public Protector in her keynote address to the Women’s Breakfast. In commemoration of Women’s Month, the University of the Free State (UFS)’s Employee Wellness Division hosted the annual event on 21 August 2018 where 900 women gathered under the theme: ‘Embrace your womanhood.’ 

Being a woman today


Law Professor and Law Trust Chair in Social Justice at Stellenbosch University, Prof Madonsela, urged the audience to look beyond the exterior and recognise “that we as individuals have a lot in common”. Speaking of unity in diversity, she praised some of the giants on whose shoulders modern women stand, such as Charlotte Maxeke, Olive Schreiner, Una Wookey, Albertina Sisulu, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, Helen Joseph, Pam Golding, Bessie Head, and Ellen Khuzwayo.

These leaders are the epitome of following the purpose of “embracing everyone’s humanity and challenging things that diminish the humanity of others”, according to Prof Madonsela.

Remaining resilient and resolute 

Despite having to contend with a patriarchal system and face challenges such as gender-based violence, femicide, poverty, inequity, media stereotypes, as well as poverty, women continue to rise. Prof Madonsela called for women to capitalise on positives such as freedom and possessing a certain degree of power, legal equality, playing a role in political spaces, economic progress, and owning a public voice.

Drawing inspiration from her humble beginnings and the lessons learnt in leadership, Prof Madonsela conveyed a simple message to all women: “You are exactly as you should be. You are a perfect expression of your creator’s magnificence. You were created for a purpose and whatever you do, just step up and pursue your purpose.”

A word from an inspired woman

It was a memorable event for Burneline Kaars, Head of Employee Wellness. “This year it was an honour to host Prof Madonsela who could share both her academic background and professional experience. She accomplished this by skilfully incorporating lessons from our country’s history and her passion for justice,” she said.

News Archive

Free State takes all at the National Netball Championships for seniors
2010-06-04

 Anja Opperman
Netball at the University of the Free State (UFS) had a very successful season. The Cheetahs won gold for the first time since 2005 at the National Netball Championship for seniors that took place during the past weekend in the DF Malherbe Centre at the University of Stellenbosch. The Cheetah team consists only of Kovsies (eight Kovsies and four old Kovsies).

This year Free State won the national U.19, U.21 and senior Netball Championships.

According to Ms Burta de Kock from KovsieSport at the UFS, students from the Cheetah group work extremely hard. “The players practice every day between three to four hours. It was clear from the beginning that the players form a unit and will do everything in their power to make us proud. Their loyalty, perseverance and determination were unbelievable, she said.

The championship was a round robin and the Cheetahs easily beat the other eight provinces namely Ingwes (Mpumalanga), Crocodile (Limpopo), Unicorns (Northwest-South), Flamingos (Northern Cape), Mermaids (KZN), Tornados (Western Cape) and Thunderbirds (Gauteng).

In the semi-final the Cheetahs beat the Tornados 44-30 and they qualified for the finals. They played against the Thunderbirds, which included six Protea players, in the final. This only motivated the Cheetah players. With outstanding play and hard work they won the match 43-37 after they were behind in points.

Adéle Niemand was nominated as the best defence player, Maryka Holtzhausen the best goal player and Anja Opperman as best player of the championship.

 

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