Masimanyane founder and executive director Dr Lesley Ann Foster has been honoured at the annual Nelson Mandela University’s Council Prestige Awards for using her individual influence for the greater good of humanity.
The awards are conferred on individuals who have made a significant impact on communities locally, nationally and/or internationally; embody the values of Mandela University and who, through their work, have contributed to the transformation of society.
The awards were presented by Mandela University Council Chairperson, Ms Nozipho January-Bardill.
Speaking at the awards ceremony, Ms January-Bardill acknowledged the role each recipient played in their respective areas of influence.
“You are being recognised for not only looking well beyond yourself and your own success, but for always looking to the needs of others be it business, as an activist for women or on the rugby field,” she said.
Dr Foster was lauded for her extensive contribution to social inclusion and changing the lives of women and children affected by gender based violence.
"The University Council believes that she serves as an inspiration to our students and staff, especially those who are the survivors of gender-based violence and oppression. Her Masimanyane organisation’s mission is to eradicate gender-based violence in order to achieve a healthy, safe, secure, equal, responsible and supportive society for all women and girl children. Her work extends to 26 countries across Africa in her capacity as President of Amanitare Sexual Rights Network."
The evening's other honorees included Nelson Mandela Bay business consultant Bongi Siwisa and Zwide-born Springbok rugby captain Siya Kolisi.
Pictured with Dr Foster (above) are, from left, NMU Vice-Chancellor Professor Sibongile Muthwa, Deputy Chair of Council Siya Mhlaluka, Bongi Siwisa and Chair of Council, Nozipho January-Bardill (far right).