On August 26th (today), which is a day reserved for war heroes of Namibia – those whose blood and sweat liberated this country from its colonisers – Phenomenal Magazine celebrates its own too. They may not have fought for this country then, but they fight for it now and their songs need to be sung.
Since I had already reblogged Hero #10 – MVA Fund’s boss, Rosalia Martins-Hausiku – here’s the rest of the list of Phenomenal Magazine’s TOP 10 heroes.
My hero #9 is Cynthia Martin. The reason why she makes this list is because she has weathered the storm to live past her famous, well-established business big bro [Sydney Martin], to be a woman of her own, even when nobody believed she could be, especially after a life-changing experience.
Now she runs a successful charity programme [Cinderella Ball] that reaches out to young girls and this year’s edition, graced by the First Lady – Monica Geingos – was a wonder!
Read her story here.
Natasja Beyleveld’s story gives me hope that I’m not doing too bad, myself. Being of South African, she’s become a household name in the local media industry with her company [NaMedia], and built a life here with a husband and two beauuuuuuuutiful children.
I not only respect this woman for who she is, but I also hold her in high esteem for what she does and stands for. And because she still calls her late father ‘dada’, I can relate :-).
Read her story here
This spot goes to Ally Angula for not only recently putting Namibia on the map at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES 2015) in Nairobi, Kenya at the end of last month, but for doing it with such grace.
She’s made of the right stuff and has walked the mud in stilettos to get to where she is now with both Leap Namibia for which she is the co-director, as well as her successful clothe line, My Republik.
She makes all the hard working female entrepreneurs in Namibia look really good to the world, you know.
I remember during our interview, a team of experts [of sort] came after me, as I waited for him to finish up a short meeting at his office. Naturally, they should have gone in before me, because as I’d gathered, they wanted to run something important by him before finishing it up to be presented to the Cabinet [or something].
So he finished his short meeting then asked for me. I was obviously shocked and shared a nervous smile at the team of experts as I walked passed them into the minister’s office. They must hate me, I thought, especially because some of them were taking quick glances at their watches like they were late to be elsewhere.
So I walked in, the minister stood to shake my hands before pointing to a seat opposite him, for me to take. What a gentleman, i thought.
We began the interview and a few minutes later, his personal assistant peered at the door to ask if we’d be done soon, since the minister still had lots awaiting his attention throughout the morning. For a second there, I actually thought he’d ask for a rain-check of our interview but to my surprise, he responded to his PA: “We’d finish sooner if you all would let us, don’t you think?”
He’s also my hero #6 because he makes time to have breakfast with his wife EVERY SINGLE MORNING! Heartwarming indeed! 🙂
Read the article here
She had her first baby almost at the same age as I had my first. Being a teen mom, she picked herself up and went back to school and then worked her back up the corporate ladder and today, she not only chairs an impressive number of boards in the country, but she also owns her own businesses, she’s a SWAPO darling and though she be but little – as Shakespeare would put it – she runs a goddamn town!
Find the article here
This crown goes to one man I respect to the moon and back, the current deputy editor of the German daily and outgoing chairman of the Editors’ Forum of Namibia, Eberhard Hoffman.
Through his story, I have learnt that we can never screw up too much; that whether or not we believe in God, redemption is for real; that whether or not we are saints or sinners, saints are all just sinners with a past. And that we all just are what we give the world outside our world.
Read the article here
Heroes #2 and #3 will follow before the end of the month. After all, it is Heroes’ Month. In the meantime, I give you my hero #1, Rosmarie Schlechter:
I met Rosmarie through Cynthia Martin. I was meeting Ms. Martin at the Eros Coffee Shop, which Rosmarie owns one Saturday morning and she as spoke away, she mentioned Rosmarie in passing. I got curious, and here we are.
This woman is made of steel, and even she thinks so too.
After losing everything, she stands tall today with not only a story to tell, but the most genuine of smiles, a business to run and takes each day as it come as she changes one life at a time.
Although she has three kids of her own, she once took in a orphan. Inasmuch as he eventually disappointed her deeply, she says she’d do it again in a heartbeat!
“He was my boy. I loved and provided for him like my own. He, however, got involved with the wrong company as he grew older and I woke up one day to look into his eyes as the police took him away, but could not see my boy. He had been gone for a while and I never even noticed. Bad company corrupts good morals, they say. He had been corrupt, convinced to steal from me and that was it. I’ve never seen him since and not a day passes that I don’t wonder what might have become of him.”
Read the full article here
Happy Heroes’ Day!