Impact SA

Tembisa High learners smile their way to improved confidence

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Learners from Tembisa Commerce & Entrepreneurship School of Specialisation, with focus on Tourism and Hospitality, were instilled with confidence to help them transition through their teenage years at a Sun International Woman’s Month workshop.

The 80 Grade eight learners enjoyed the “Smile, Shimmer & Shine Workshop” which forms part of Sun International’s Adopt a School programme. “The workshop was a pilot which aimed to equip Grade 8 learners with coping skills that will help them better manage the challenges they may face,” said Sun International’s SED Specialist, Heidi Edson. “The intention is to roll out this initiative to other schools that Sun International partners with.”

The workshop was attended by 2022 Miss South Africa, Ndavi Nokeri in one of her last appearances as the incumbent. “It’s a very exciting initiative; I love how Sun International is bringing it to a school focused on tourism and hospitality so that the students can see there is a future in what they are learning,” said Nokeri. “There is so much power in campaigns such as this, as we empower the youth and give them hope for what they can achieve in their future.”

The event was the official launch of Sun International’s Transformation Manager, Ashnie Muthasamy’s book, Smile, Shimmer, Shine, which also gave its name to the day’s proceedings.Muthasamy is also a life coach and speaker who is passionate about empowering women through her work. “The book is a reference guide that young teenagers can use to deal with some common challenges such as body shaming, bullying and procrastination. Many South African communities are broken and it is difficult for these girls to get the guidance they require, so I hope this guide with simple tips can help teens with the life lessons we often learn too late,” Muthasamy said.

Themes covered on the day included: Breaking negative patterns, such as comparing with others, negative self-talk and body shaming; building positive habits such as self-confidence and reframing; and coping with stress though breathing exercises, dancing and colouring.

“We literally saw our Grade 8 girls ‘Smile, Shimmering and Shinning’ throughout the day, as they were inspired by Miss South Africa Ndavhi, and motivated by Ashnie as she ran the workshop with so much passion and enthusiasm,” said Mrs Gladys Ndlangamandla, Life Orientation teach at the Tembisa high school. “We thank the Sun International team behind this project and many more that have already taken place at our school.”

The surprise goodie bags which included a copy of the book, were the cherry on top for the young women.

Sun International has sponsored Tembisa High since it was identified as a School of Specialisation in Consumer Studies. “There is a natural fit for Sun international, as a leading hospitality company, and the school as the learners can further their studies in hospitality management and one day take up career opportunities within the Group,” said Edson.

Since Sun International embarked on an educational programme to integrate sustainable practices into schools on a national level in 2017, properties have adopted 60 schools nationwide. The ‘Adopt a School’ programme incorporates various sustainability elements such as social, health and safety, economic and environmental elements. Education is an important component of our socio-economic development programme as it opens doors for employment and is a social equaliser.”


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