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She is currently the President of the Voice of Women Entrepreneurs Tanzania, (VoWET) a platform that empowers women economically in East Africa’s second biggest economy .In addition; she is a chairperson of major women’s savings and credit co-operative organization in Tanzania. However, it is her entrepreneurial journey that bagged her East Africa Entrepreneur of the Year award in 2017 that initially made her more visible in a space smothered by a patriarchal mindset.

Maida Waziri, 49, Managing Director of,   Ibra Contractors Ltd, that won her the accolade of best female contractor in Tanzania for cumulatively five years ending 2015 also owns Ibra Enterprises, her first officially registered company that is engaged in the furniture and hardwood sector.

Understandably, what makes Maida a news-grabber is the fact that her road to success is simply inspirational. No wonder she is widely considered a quintessential entrepreneur who has made  it to the top by sheer grit, determination and a never-say-die spirit.

Soon after completing her O Levels in 1990 Maida chose the root of entrepreneurship. Her parents could have managed to send her to high school, but that was not where her heart was. Her passion was in business.

“I dreamt of living a good life. I dreamt of employing others so they could earn a living through me. I’m glad this has happened already,” she says.

“My parents could have managed to send me to high school, but I decided to go for business. My mind was much more into business than in studies. I had this feeling of doing better in business than studying,” says the mother of three.

“The truth is my mom suffered a lot because of poverty, so I told myself since when I was a little girl that I must succeed and I would get rich and pull women up. It’s that poor background that has pushed me to where I am today, “she says. 

Maida begun her sojourn in the labour market as a sales girl, selling hand-me-down clothes, commonly referred to within East Africa as ‘mitumba’. She graduated in 1992 to a seamstress after going through a basic course at that ubiquitous YMCA College where she put up time for eight years seeing her sewing machines growing in numbers from having one to 30 and was now predictably an employer employing 15 people.

It’s worth noting that Maida began her business journey with a meager $ 12 as capital

“I used to walk with an open mind hoping that people would love the clothes and buy them,” says Waziri.

Since hawking is mainly done by men, people would be surprised to see a young girl walking around the streets selling clothes. But today, the situation has changed with more women street vendors. Apart from having to walk long distances to find customers, business was not always rosy. There were days when she would sell zilch.

“But this did not deter me. This is the path I had chosen and therefore I was ready to face the challenges. I raised enough money in one year and enrolled for a tailoring course in 1993. After training for one year, I opened a tailoring mart in Buguruni (Dar es Salaam). Business was good but no matter how much money I earned, my parents were still unhappy with the decision I had made, “says Maida.

Not content with just sewing, her business acumen steered her into a myriad of business enterprises that increased her income stream including food and the transport industry, as well as owning herds of cows which provided her with milk to commercially sell including the fishery sector.  

“She was the first woman to operate a motor boat at the Dar ferry, which would collect fish from Mafia Island in Zanzibar to sell in Dar es Salaam. The transport business didn’t pan out and Maida stopped the fishery venture because she didn’t relish water traveling,” recalls Amidha Busaraa, a former employer. 

Not one to sit on her laurels Maida was always looking out for fresh opportunities. 

“They say information is power, when I heard there was a tender from the government. I knew I couldn’t apply without having a company, so at first I used someone else’s company to apply. During this interim period, with no other option I choose to use other people’s companies. 

“I got conned, I even recall the first job where this happened. When I supplied mosquito nets to State House (residential place for the country’s President), they took all my money. I then used someone else’s company, I was conned again. It was simply a hustle so I finally decided to register my own company, ‘Ibra Enterprises’ back in 1998,” recalls Maida.

Now she was deeply entrenched in doing serious business beginning with making seat covers and uniforms for the government. Noteworthy is the fact that in Oct 1999 during the burial of Julius Nyerere, the founding President of Tanzania, Maida was the sole supplier of seat covers for government vehicles. That engagement, saw her make substantial profit and she went ahead to purchase her first car.

A year later she formed Ibra Contractors Ltd (ICL), her signature enterprise to date.

“Since we were incorporated in 2000, initially as IBRA Building Contractors & General Supplies, and later as IBRA Contractors we have emerged as one of the most respected general contracting firms in Tanzania. We have grown, matured and evolved into a high level construction company that focuses on buildings, roads, bridges and even dams.We have proven our ability to take on large, complex projects while demonstrating good performance in meeting the project objectives (such as budget, time and quality) successfully. Today, we are recognized as a high performance construction firm, for our strength in traditional construction methods and for our creative, fresh approach to cutting edge technologies and delivery systems,” reads part of ICL’s website.

Working in a male dominated industry does have its challenges.

“I’ve had to prove my abilities just because I am a woman to be accepted buy my peers in the construction industry but I‘ve remained unfazed and soldered like a true professional,” says Maida.

Her other biggest challenge has understandably being finance.

“You can go to the bank to ask for a loan of Tsh. 1 billion (US$427,350) only to be asked to provide

For a business woman who began her entrepreneur journey with a less than impressive academic portfolio it’s prove of her dogged determination to better herself that today she possess a degree in Business Administration.
No wonder women need to pay attention to her nuggets when she gives her opinion about what it takes for woman to succeed in business.  

“They say in entrepreneurship there are three things: skills, opportunities and reward. The first two have serious challenges but I encourage women to be brave…As an entrepreneur you have to have three eyes….“I’ve found to succeed in business one needs to know and understand the work they are involved in. Because when your employees realize you don’t know the work, they are likely to harass you.”

   By Charles Wachira,

In recent times, women all over the world are beginning to pay a closer attention to philanthropy since they have realized that this does not only put smiles on faces but also affords them the opportunity to become agents of empowerment to the society at large.

The quest to make the world a better place, is currently spreading among women from different works of life who are going the extra mile to be a part of the new generation world changers.

In Philippine, Nanette Medved-Po a former film actress, TV host and model began her journey into philanthropy when she sighted an opportunity to make a difference using her wealth and fame.

The newness about philanthropy is in the modern perception that surrounds it, which is the idea that wealth and fame can be used as tools to promote good cause for the welfare of others.

According to John Gardner, “Wealth is not new. Neither is charity. But the idea of using private wealth imaginatively, constructively, and systematically to attack the fundamental problems of mankind is new.”

Nanette is not the only woman in the world with the desire to help mankind but her system of philanthropy is unique in its own way, and for this course she has given up so much to see that many little faces are lighted up in hope.

Nanette was born in 1971 in Hawaii, USA, her father is a Russian and her mother a Chinese. Although Nanette spent her growing up years traveling throughout Asia, she had most of her primary and secondary education in Holy Family Academy in Angeles City of Philippine.

She proceeds to Babson College in Wellesley, Massachusetts to further her studies in Finance and Entrepreneurship and later graduated as Summa Cum Laude in 1998.

This former actress-model became a social entrepreneur when she saw the possibility to leverage her popularity as an avenue to do good. The idea started to play in her mind after she had an encounter with a crowd of fans. She was at a Christmas parade to promote her film and she saw a throng of people, young and old, approaching to hold her on a pedestal. This reminded her of her character ‘Darna’ which she played in the Pinoy superhero, as a village girl who one night received superpowers from a shooting star and she became a guardian of the needy and a force of good over evil, Nanette thought it would not be a bad idea if she became the ‘Darna’ that the world needs and felt she should do the same.

Nanette had witnessed great poverty while working before she went on to further her education and began to travel around the country. She observed the great successes that was achieved in the business community and yet there was so much struggles and delay in the non-profit sector in terms of fund raising because they put more focus on impact than other aspects.

So she thought it would be better to create a hybrid that combines both the discipline of the private sector in terms of funds generation and the passion for humanitarian impact expressed by the non-profit sector, and then rather than dividend that the private sector gives out to shareholders, it is rather used towards a social good whether it is the environment or in education or in employees, or whatever it is.

After so much thought and plans she founded Generation Hope, a manufacturing company that produces and sells bottled water called Hope in a Bottle. However, Generation Hope is not like every other manufacturing company because unlike other profitable organizations, all of its proceeds are donated to Friends of Hope, a nonprofit that was also founded by Nanette, which uses the funds to build public school classrooms in different places in Philippine.

Before she ventured into the act, she had no business experience especially in consumer goods, and no one was expecting that from her but with the passion that was borne out of a sincere desire she was able to bring Generation Hope to its current position.

This unique idea and act of Nannette transported her to pages of Forbes Magazine’s 2017 not as a Celebrity but as a Hope Giver.

Generation Hope is still fulfilling its mission to date, and in mid-2017 the company sold over 9 million bottles and built 37 classrooms that have benefited more than 7,310 students.

In pursuit of her company’s mission which is to build more public school classrooms, Nanette diversified the company to manufacture other products such as Hope in a Coconut and Hope in a Shirt.

The Hope in a Coconut comes in the form of Vita Coco coconut water, in which five pesos from every pack goes to Filipino coconut farmers. While the Hope in a Shirt is a line of T-shits made from 100 percent recycled plastic bottles and designed with artwork by actress and visual artist Solenn Heussaff, in order to attract the attention of buyers.

She is among the three Filipinos listed amongst the current record of 40 of Asia’s profound humanitarians selected from fourteen countries across Asia Pacific. She has also been recognized in other platforms including the Forbes “Heroes of Philanthropy”.

Nanette is married to Christopher Po the couple got married in June 1999 in South Africa and their marriage is blessed with 2 children Ganden and Joss Dechen.

Nanette is a unique model and an inspiration to many.

By Miracle Nwankwo

 

Put on the eyes of your imagination and think of how the world will be like if the privileged and financially endowed few in the society would swing to action, providing services that promote the welfare of others, especially through generous donations of money to good causes? I bet the world would definitely become a better place.

Some individuals who have acknowledged this truth have swung to philanthropic action, with activities that not only impact on lives positively but also inspire the next generation.

In this “Me First” era where most of the money bag citizens just clamor to use their wealth as a tool for more wealth, only a few individuals still consider philanthropy as a necessary tool towards the development of a nation. Therefore, it is of uttermost importance to celebrate the few selfless icons who have distinguished themselves as figures of indispensable ladder to greatness.

One of such personalities is the founder and Chairman of Beijing Orient Landscape; Madame He Qiaonv. This Chinese philanthropist has given not just a helping hand to her country, but also her heart to making the dreams of many a reality.

Born in east China’s Zhejiang Province in 1966 to a family who ran a successful business of buying and selling seedlings, she found her path of philanthropy at an early stage in life. Later on, she headed to Beijing Forestry University, emerging with a bachelor’s degree in 1988, before heading back to the family firm and spotting a gap in the labor market.

He Qiaonv is one of the founders of the China Global Philanthropy Institute, and a member of Mulan Club, a group of female business leaders in China that donated $44 million to Peking University to foster entrepreneurship by women. Her philanthropic desire propelled her to establish the Beijing Qiaonv Foundation which is devoted to support Panthera, an organization known for protecting the world’s wild cats. She stands out as one of the few individuals with the largest-ever personal philanthropic commitment to wildlife conservation.

He Qiaonv’s burning desire to better the life of others inspired her to adopt a diversified approach in her philanthropic acts, as she have impacted in different sectors of the Chinese economy. It is not strange to describe Qiaonv as an epitome of selflessness, seeing that her philanthropic acts spread across different sectors of her country.  

He Qiaonv’s foundation has set up projects that ensure a wide range of environmental safety such as tackling hazardous waste, polluted water systems, disappearing bodies of water, soil erosion and climate change. It is no doubt that her outstanding leadership qualities has placed her in the spotlight.

The Qiaonv Foundation was established in 2012 and has quietly been spreading its force in the past years, benefiting environmental groups, ecological think tanks, international cooperation, arts organizations, traditional culture, women’s entrepreneurship incubators, and more.

She is not just a philanthropic heroine but a philanthropic influencer who encourages others to involve in philanthropy.  She has engaged in a number of effective partnerships and this has helped in extending her philanthropic acts. Gates and He Qiaonv have established a college for international social good in Shenzhen in south China’s Guangdong Province along with three other collaborators who hope to progress the philanthropic spirit in the Middle Kingdom.

Her undying love to conserve the natural resources in her country has singled her out as an ardent conservationist who is raising a culture of environmental awareness, thereby creating a safe country for her people, as well extending a helping hand to less privileged citizens in China.

Despite being an active player in philanthropy, He Qiaonv is also a top-notch business personality. She is currently the Chief Executive Officer of Oriental Garden Company in Beijing, one of China’s largest landscape architecture firms. Through the works of this great philanthropist, it is quite glaring that the cure our world needs lie in the hand of selfless citizens who will effect the change they want to see in the society.

Everyone has a story but the stories that are never forgotten are those ones that have an impact on people and societies. In recent times, philanthropy has proven to be a sure way of making an impact because it goes beyond helping people and as far as advancing a society and building a nation.

Very few persons have come to understand this and they are running with this vision. While others still see it as giving to the poor, these ones are looking forward to a future where the world will be rated very low in terms of poverty.

These great personalities are represented in diverse ethnic groups, tribes, nations, and regions, and the inspiring tales written about them can make anyone want to go the extra mile.

One of such kinds is the story of Jillian Haslam, a British entrepreneur, author, motivational speaker, and philanthropist, who was born and raised in India.

Jillian grew up in one of the slums in Kolkata, amongst 12 children born by Roland Terrance Haslam and Margaret Althea Haslam.

They are of the British descent but ended up in the worst kind of poverty because of her father’s love for the Indians and their culture.

Unfortunately, it turned out that Terrance’s love was not reciprocated as the Indians were yet to forget the struggles and pains they encountered during the British colonization.

After India gained independence, they became uncomfortable with the British presence in their country, at a later year; all Britain’s were asked to leave after the Partition in 1947. At that time, Terrance served as a captain in the British Army and has grown fond of the people and their way of living, he decides to stay back to raise his children with values of the country that he held in high regard. Unknown to him, he was making a wrong decision which would lead his family into abject poverty.

Things turned from bad to worse and to worst for the family, so baby Jillian had to grow up in the midst of excruciating poverty, unlike what most in any Western nation can fathom.

Although Britain, they were not accepted by the people, in fact, no Indian organization was interested in giving Jillian’s father a job, and as a result, their financial struggles expanded and they ravaged in poverty.  

They had to suffer starvation, diseases and health crises and as time went by, death called, she lost four (4) of her siblings.

Her story is very touching but the interesting part is that it didn’t end there because in the midst of all those challenging experiences, a woman with a dedicated heart for philanthropy born. The family situation got worsened by the day and it was very pathetic. However, something significant caught her attention which had to do with the help people offered at some point.

It takes a kind-hearted person to recognize any form of help as an act of love no matter how big or small.

Having gone through all those pain and struggles she knew she could only move forward by forgiving others, so she forgave all who had tormented her and was grateful for the help they had given in the midst of it.

Jillian managed to finish her secondary education from St. Thomas Girls School, at age 17. She soon moved to Delhi to stay with her elder sister who had managed to get a job as a secretary in a private company.

She also took a secretarial course and in 1990, she got a job in a private company on a monthly salary of Rs 900.

After a year, she got another job with a German firm at a payment of Rs 1,500 and she moved her mother who was now suffering from cancer to Delhi. She lost her mother  soon after, leaving them behind with their father.

Following her late mother’s health crisis, Jillian was caught up in huge debt; she had taken a year salary in advance in order to pay for her mother’s treatment. After the death of her mother, she had to work as a singer in restaurants for a whole year in order to pay the company back and sustain herself and two of her siblings.

Fortunately, in 1995, something cheering happened to Jillian. She was selected by Bank of America as an executive secretary to the CEO Ambi Venkateswaran, amongst 250 job aspirants who came for the interview.

Having joined the bank, she became active in the bank’s charitable department, her passion and skill quickly distinguished her, and before long she was made President of the Charity and Diversity Network in India for Bank of America, leading their work in four different cities.

In a short time, Jillian had made so much that she was able to move her family from India to Britain.

Things began to turn from sour to sweet and she was excited that the dream of giving back to the society will become a reality in a very short time.

She first founded a coaching and training company in the UK and she was involved in various avenues of philanthropy.

Eventually, Jillian took charge of the Remedia network of charities, which operates majorly in India and the UK.

The Remedia’s motto is, “Lifting the poor from every generation,” and it covers all age bracket from youngest infants to the oldest adults who had no health care and no one to cater for them.

The system was becoming overwhelming, being burdened by the huge amount of needs of the various people it was catering for, Jillian got involved with the system because she wanted to help move it forward.

The Remedia operates like a network, with different branches targeting specific segments of society, including the elderly, the disabled, children, young adults, girls, and women.

She has been dedicated to the system, operating the charities in India and the UK in collaboration with others who are a part of Remedia. She funds the charity with the money generated from her book sales, her motivational speaking and training seminars, and from donors and supporters.

Jillian often visits India, and the poor in other nations and the UK, to meet and spend time with them face to face. She touches them, laughs with them, listens, cries, and then she acts – finding a way to give a chance for a better life to the ones who have no chance.

In 2017, she was recognized and honored with the Mother Teresa Award. The award means so much to her and it is more humbling than others that she has received because it reminds her of the childhood days when she and her family were actually helped by Mother Teresa’s charities. They were on the receiving end of the life-sacrificing generosity of the greatest saint of the 20th century. And now, she’s been honored with an award named after Mother Teresa for her own philanthropic work in the same country.

Meanwhile, her impact has been seen and felt in the lives of many and she has also been honored with various philanthropy awards on almost a yearly basis. Some of her biggest honors include:

Asia Woman of the Year 2012, 1st Runner Up

Star Recognition Award 2015, UK

True Legend Award 2015, The Telegraph

Mother Teresa Award 2017

Hello, Kolkata Humanitarianism Award 2016.

There is nothing wrong with acts of philanthropy that are done because of wealth earned by an enterprising husband, or from a big inheritance, or from a compelled individual who has made great wealth on her own and is prompted to give back to the society, but Jillian is on a mission to see the injustice of poverty end for as many people as possible who still live today like she did all through her childhood.

By Miracle NWANKWO

 

Dayle Haddon is a Canadian model and actress, above all a humanitarian. Dayle was born 26 May 1948 and was raised in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, Haddon speaks both English and French. As a child, she was enrolled in dancing classes to develop her physique, and she performed well enough to become a member of Les Grands Ballets Canadiens at 13, and was chosen Miss Montreal at 18.

Dayle, who was born naturally beautiful, lived an exemplary life of encouraging women to look beautiful irrespective of their age. In this regard, she is credited as an author of Ageless Beauty: A Woman’s Guide to Lifelong Beauty and Well-Being. Haddon is Jewish.

In September 2007, Dayle traveled to the Darfur region of Sudan, where she interviewed women and children in internally displaced peoples (IDP) camps over a five day period. The visit included briefings from UNICEF staff, as well as visits to UNICEF-supported child-friendly centers, water points, health centers, schools and income generation projects.

Additionally in her travels with UNICEF, Dayle has also toured hospitals and health facilities throughout Angola, and visited women and children in Bolivia. Upon her return from Bolivia, Dayle blogged on The Huffington Post about her visit and the changes UNICEF is seeking to bring about in fighting poverty, HIV/AIDS, and child abuse and in providing education.

Dayle’s real humanitarian journey began when in her career in the fashion and beauty industry. She travelled extensively to South America, Africa, and the Middle East where she came face-to-face with women from different cultures who shared horrific daily struggles. Empathizing with the stories she heard, Haddon realized quality education had the power to provide women with a chance to escape poverty and elevate their own voices, and in 2008, she founded WomenOne,(an NGO) designed to create  an international support system for women, by women. With a focus on education and holistic programming, WomenOne partners with institutions and community-based organizations to give girls the resources necessary to push back against financial and cultural barriers.

 Dayle has this to say herself, “I was in Angola visiting a rural clinic. Women had walked all night with babies strapped to their backs to reach the only medical facility for miles around. A doctor in the clinic pulled me aside and asked if I could help him. They needed two microscopes to do their work better. I assured him I would help, and gave his request to the head of our team. They told me the problem was too small for them. At that moment a light bulb went off, and I felt it was not too small for those women who had walked all night. I realized there was room for a smaller organization to work alongside the larger ones to make the best possible impact, and the idea for WomenOne, focused on global education for girls, was born”

 

Dayle Haddon found like-minds in the course of helping women and girl-child globally with Amy E. Hepburn, Gamze Ates, Susan Smith Ellis, Shayna Haddon, Carol J. Hamilton, and Amanda Gray Meral. Together in WomenOne, they form policies and programs that touch and shape the lives of women and the girl-child globally.

Through WomenOne, Haddon has partnered with Free the Child, an international charity, to provide scholarships for girls’ education in Kenya. Through her organization, she has raised and donated more than $150,000 for one of Free the Children all-girls secondary schools.

Dayle said this about what will be the focus of WomenOne in 2017. “To get more girls off the streets, and set up more programs – especially literacy programs and more competitive STEM [science, technology, engineering, math] programs. To reach out to more organizations, and bring more people on board. We currently partner with LVMH, the Canadian government, Apple, and L’Oreal, as well as a few smaller companies, but a big part of our mission is to bring new people in the arena, particularly those in the beauty industry, in aims of reducing the number of girls out of school globally. We really are one – this planet is getting smaller and smaller. We are united and connected, and we have to do this together”

By Akor Reuben

 

Contributing our quotas to making impact in the lives of others, and making a positive mark in the society is very important because it guarantees a better life for so many people across the globe. The impact we make in these lives, engraves us in the hearts of men even when you are not there.

Just like the story of the matriarch, late Winnie Mandela, who recently left the world and whose impacts will continue to speak because it benefitted millions of people, there are also other women whose selfless stories have been shared all over the world, even here on the impact inspire category of Amazons Watch. They have been tagged selfless because they chose to go the extra mile for others. They left their comfort zones to enable them impact in the lives of others.

One of such women is Tsitsi Masiyiwa, the woman behind one of Africa’s self-made billionaires. Tsitsi is the wife of Strive Masiyiwa, founder, and owner of Econet Wireless, One of Africa’s largest Telecommunications service providers. Within Tsitsi’s story, you will find a woman with a heart of gold, pursuing a unique vision and purpose.

Tsitsi Masiyiwa is from Harare, Zimbabwe, born on the 5th of January 1965, as the youngest of five sisters.

She completed most of her education in Zimbabwe, starting from the Chishawasha Primary School Harare, Zimbabwe, to the Dominican Convent School, where she completed her primary and secondary education respectively. She moved further to obtain a degree in business studies from the University of Zimbabwe and also an MBA (Master of Business Administration) in the same school.

Philanthropy

In the 90’s, Zimbabwe experienced a surge of HIV/AIDS. During the periods of the disease outbreak, many lives were lost including breadwinners of various homes. At that time, her husband’s telecommunication business was already in existence, and many of their companies were greatly affected by the disease, having lost some of their employees to the disease, there were others who also lost some members of their families.

The disease outbreak was so intense on the people that Tsitsi and her husband always attended funerals of either an employee or a community member. At first, they attended funerals almost every month but it became dire that it moved to every week and it didn’t stop there, it became almost every day. And as lives were lost there was sorrow everywhere.

Tsitsi was broken as she watched the community and children of the lost employees grieve over the loss of their loved ones, and in the midst of that pain, she was filled with a burning desire to lend a helping hand. She took up the responsibility to support the young children and orphans whose happy lives were altered by the pandemic. She was dedicated to this mission and in 1996 she founded Higherlife Foundation with the help of her husband Strive.

Higherlife Foundation, since its inception, has been touching the lives of many children, giving them the opportunity to live again.

The foundation has also moved beyond Zimbabwe to other parts of Africa affecting the lives of thousands of children by providing them with tertiary scholarships to study in top ranking universities around the world. Higherlife Foundation runs one of the largest scholarship programs in Africa, supporting over 250,000, children in the African continent.

In 2008, during the Cholera outbreak in Zimbabwe, the foundation supported the resuscitation of operations of the College of Medicine in Zimbabwe, and from 2008-2010 it provided food packs to starving families during drought periods.

Higherlife Foundation has over the years, restructured the foundation’s system to focus on seeking out orphans, vulnerable children, and highly talented students to nurture, and help them fulfill their potentials through education. This strategy has been successfully affected in Zimbabwe, Lesotho, and Burundi, where the Foundation has expanded operations and has its in-country presence.

Business

Besides her activities with the Higherlife Foundation, Tsitsi Masiyiwa has committed herself to other areas of philanthropy. In fact, she turns every business into a means of giving to the people. Much like her husband Strive Masiyiwa, she is driven by her passion for technology and innovation, however she is more interested in meeting needs than business.

This interest must be the reason behind the Muzinda Hub, an entrepreneurship and innovations project which she co-founded in Harare, Zimbabwe. Muzinda Hub is an incubator lab for youth digital skills development and business mentorship that leverages technology to promote youth entrepreneurship. It is the fastest growing tech hub in Sub Saharan Africa with more than 1,000 coders. The scale-up of Muzinda Hub initiatives is being supported by Econet Zimbabwe.

Tsitsi is also the founder of Ruzivo, an online interactive digital learning platform targeted at primary and secondary school students. This e-learning platform provides and facilitates the use of blended learning models in class. Ruzivo is designed in a way that it provides services to all students including those in most disadvantaged schools. It has zero-rated e-learning products, offering unique and high-quality educational content, exercises and tests developed locally, based on the Zimbabwean national curriculum to students across the country. Ruzivo disseminates its product in partnership with Econet Zimbabwe and Higherlife Foundation.

Other Philanthropic Activities

Through the story of Tsitsi Masiyiwa, you will discover that she is sold out to meeting societal needs with children and youths as her focus. Beyond her personal initiates, she has worked with many local and international organizations who are also interested in improving the livelihood of children, one of which includes her work with World Vision, Imbuto Foundation, Let Girls Learn, and fund, PATH.

She is also a member of the boards of director of PATH and ENDFund. She co-founded African Philanthropy Forum, a regional affiliate of Global Philanthropy Forum, and she is also a member of the Giving Pledge together with her husband.

Family

Tsitsi is happily married to Strive Masiyiwa and the couple is blessed with six children.

A lifetime of investing in the lives of others is a better way of living an impactful life, each year we discover lists of individuals with a peculiar mindset recognized and celebrated across nations for their charitable works.

Rohini Nilekani is an Indian philanthropist, who has consistently been recognized for her continued efforts in filling up vacuums in her society.

Rohini carries the billionaire’s mindset which is filled with spreading her wealth to others in a bid to build a society that she can be proud of. Her philanthropy investments cut across different areas of human needs including; health care, food, sanitation, microfinance, and education, to mention a few. Little wonder she has consistently been listed on the Forbes Asia’s list for “Heroes of Philanthropy” over the past fifteen years.

The irony of life that explains how people often think that wealth as a final destination to achievement is they fail to realize that “Wealth comes with huge responsibility and is best deployed in the larger public interest,” said Rohini.

According to one of Asia’s renowned female philanthropist, Mei Hing Chak from Southern China, what the above statement means is “that the value of life is actually not measured by the amount of wealth you possess but by the contribution you make to the society.”

Rohini is the beautiful wife of Nandan Nilekani the chairman of Infosys, and the couple has been engaged in championing philanthropic activities in the last decade all over India.

She is a journalist who has spent several years in journalism, working with India’s leading publications such as Bombay Magazine, India Today, MINT and The Times of India.

Under her journalism career, Rohini is a profound personality with various achievements to show for it. She sits on the Board of trustees of ATREE, the Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment, an environmental think-tank in pursuing sustainable development.

She is also on the Eminent Persons Advisory Group of the Competition Commission of India, and she served as a member of the Audit Advisory Board of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India from 2010 to 2012.

In 2017, Rohini was elected a Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

As a journalist, she understands the cries of the masses and she looks forward to meeting those needs the way she can.

She started out with giving long before she came into the spotlights as a philanthropy figure in Asia. With the little she had, she gave to the poor, less privilege and supported young girls with scholarships.

She was so crucial to her charity that she set out to create an organizational structure to channel her giving.

In 2004, Rohini and her husband experienced a major turning point in their business that led to a massive financial increase, after a concise thoughtful thinking, she was sure of what to do with her wealth.

She decided to re-brand her little foundation – Arghyam, into an organization that is concentrating on a particular goal, thereby carving a niche that is different and unique from other foundation and philanthropic movement.

Although Arghram has been in existence since 2001 but in 2005 Rohini redirected Arghyam’s focus on providing clean and portable water for the people of India. Since she was not familiar with the water sector, she took a while to study the sector and also got acquainted with its systems which enabled her to discover the best ways to leverage her resources.

Over the last six years, Arghyam has supported a large number of domestic water and sanitation projects and NGOs in 19 states. The foundation has also ventured substantial sustainable development activities in environmental sectors such as reviving traditional water bodies and rainwater harvesting. Asides the Arghyam foundation, Rohini also has other strategic charity channels that meet other human needs, which she funds with the sole aim of bettering the lives of many (if not all) in India.

Other channels of Rohini’s philanthropic endeavors include:

Pratham Books, a non-profit publishing house of children’s books cofounded in 2004. This organization has succeeded in touching the lives of millions of children by putting ‘a book in every child’s hand” which is the sole aim of the organization.

EkStep, Co-Founded in 2014 with her husband, is a non-profit educational organization that provides open learning platform targeted towards 200 million children in India between the ages of five and 10 years.

In the year 2000, Rohini also founded the Akshara Foundation – a charity organization that provides quality education for underprivileged children in Bangalore, India.

Beyond these above mention NGOs founded by Rohini, there are many more channels through which she spreads her fortune to the society.

We live in a world where there is a great imbalance between the ‘have everything’ and the ‘have-nothing’ which leads to so much discrimination among humanity.

However, there are also very few persons who want to live their lives on a continuous course of bridging such gaps.

Rohini’s greatest pursuit is to bridge the wide gap between the ‘have-everything’ and the ‘have-nothing’ in the society.

She believes that good governance starts from the people, and is the responsibility of the people to create a government of their own: “We cannot be mere consumers of good governance; we have to co-create it,” she argued.

She constantly reminds herself that she is lucky and she has a lot to do for the society.

This explains why Philanthropy is seen as a billionaire’s mindset, because all billionaires love investment, and philanthropy is investing in lives.