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The 10th anniversary of the Cell C Take a Girl Child to Work Day, which has become one of the country’s biggest collaborative acts of volunteerism, was celebrated last Thursday.
Since its launch, more than 600 000 girls have visited over 400 “places of work” as part of the campaign.
The theme for this year is “choose your tomorrow, today” and the project seeks to provide girls in grades 10, 11 and 12 across the country with platforms to deepen their thinking and aspirations about their role in society and, more importantly, show them what opportunities are available in the workplace.
Hundreds of companies around SA again registered to be part of the day and they provided girls with the opportunity to spend a day at their premises and experience the world of work.
This year, Cell C itself hosted 60 pupils, 20 of whom were from Eastbank High School in Alexandra.
Cell C chief executive Alan Knott-Craig welcomed the group and two of the girls spent the entire day with him and got first-hand experience of what it takes to be the CEO of a major company.
“This is not only an important annual event for the company but also for the country and the hundreds of thousands of girl learners that have participated in this day over the past 10 years,” Knott-Craig said.
“In my career I have been very fortunate to work with and for some of the greatest female minds in the country and they have inspired me tremendously.
“I am therefore grateful to have the opportunity today to give some advice to young girl learners and hopefully inspire them the way I was inspired in my career.”
The 60 girls also attended an event hosted by Cell C at which Nicky Newton-King, chief executive of the Johannesburg Stock Exchange addressed them, with other influential women in the public and private sector.
“On this 10th anniversary of the project, 400 companies formally registered with us to host girl learners today,” said Mercia Maserumule, Cell C’s corporate social investment manager.
“About 50 000 girl learners visited companies, NGOs and government departments throughout the country on Take a Girl Child to Work day.”
“We challenge corporate businesses in South Africa to continue to share their knowledge, job experience and ideas on career and job opportunities not only today but on an ongoing basis, to help us achieve our goal of encouraging young girls and women to be active in the country’s economy.”