Over the years Cell C’s Take a Girl Child to Work Day has become a movement that affords grade 10-12 girl learners, from all walks of life, the chance to experience a day in the workplace first-hand and a glimpse at the possibilities available to them.
For many, the day spent in the working world shadowing top executives and entrepreneurs opens up a world of hope and dreams. It inspires girls to work hard to achieve what they want to attain in life and contributes towards making their dreams tangible.
Cell C first introduced the campaign to the South African business and government community on 08 May 2003, and in 2016 more than 700 corporates volunteered to host around 50 000 school girls across South Africa.
“Cell C is dedicated to the development and empowerment of young people both inside and outside the company and we are committed to encouraging the youth to achieve their full potential,” says Suzette van der Merwe, managing executive of the Cell C Foundation.
Since its launch, the company has developed and implemented various successful programmes aimed at encouraging women to achieve their full potential. Backed by the goodwill of the South African business community and Government Cell C has assisted in preparing thousands of young women for a brighter future.
The Cell C Girl Child Bursary Fund affords South African companies and the general public to contribute towards the tertiary education and training for qualifying girls from disadvantaged backgrounds.
Says van der Merwe: “We firmly believe that offering bursaries provides a long term investment in achieving the goal of empowering women and youth in South Africa. Cell C fully supports women and youth empowerment initiatives and recognises the valuable contributions women are making to the organisation as well as the country.”
One of the programme’s 2004 alumni Mulalo Nekhumbe, for example, who spent her day at auditors Ernst and Young. Today she is an investment banker working in mergers and the acquisitions of companies.
Another alumnus, Thabang Masanabo is currently the founder of Thape Media, a television and film production company. She is also a freelance news anchor for eNCA. She participated in the programme in 2004 and 2005.

Pictured: A group of schoolgirls with Minister of Women in the Presidency Susan Shabangu and goodwill ambassador Miss South Africa 2017 Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters.