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In the era of women empowerment, young women are now more than before, able to find their voice and speak up for themselves. It is important that they are able to see that their dreams are valid and achievable if they focus and commit. They can draw inspiration from path-finding women who look like them, women who have stories similar to theirs, who focused on the rise and not the fall, cleared the path for others as well as understand the inherent power in being a woman.
The Exchange is an annual mentorship platform, designed by Marutlulle + Co to enable young women (cubs) and established older women (lionesses) to connect, converse and create in a safe and trusting environment. This annual event, hosts pre-selected young ladies to partake and is held on the last Saturday of November. Within this setting, young women (cubs) from different walks of life come together and talk about work, life and business and ask questions that need answers, big and small. These cubs are encouraged to show up for themselves and be ready to not only learn but share themselves as well.
In 2017 The Exchange brought together young women (cubs) who were in the early stages of their careers. At the end of the event, the cubs were asked to pay it forward to women that will come after them.
Marutlulle + C/o held the 2nd edition of The Exchange, on a cloudy Saturday at the City Lodge Hotel in Newtown, Johannesburg. The day started with introductions and a short presentation by Sizakele Marutlulle (CEO and Founder of Marutlulle + C/o). This was followed by a Speed-Dating session, A Circle of Trust engagement, a Buffet Lunch and ended with a Commitment Session.
This year, 2018, the cubs were young women who hailed from the Eastbank, Alexandra and Midrand. They were a diverse group, at different stages of personal and professional development. Many tough questions were asked and answered. The day encouraged the cubs and the lionesses to self-examine what it is that matters to them and how to have difficult conversations with family, friends and even strangers. In learning about each other, the cubs also learnt something new about themselves. The day ended with a round table discussion where each lioness reflected on the day and gave a short message of encouragement to cubs. During the Commitment Session, the cubs pledged ways they planned to pay it forward. It was clear to all at the end that when women coalesce their power, they becoming a mighty force for good and progress
Now ask yourself, if you were not afraid, what would you do?