As the month of March comes to a close, we look at an event that took place in Harare, Zimbabwe in celebration of the International Women’s day. This year, Tag a Life International (TaLI) in partnership with a global mentorship organisation, Vital Voices, hosted a Mentorship night at the University of Zimbabwe on the 8th of March 2017 to mark the International Women’s day and the launch of the 6 month mentorship programme for young women.

The mentorship program is pioneered by the Tag a Life director, Nyaradzo Mashayamombe, as a flag bearer of a global mentorship programme hosted by Vital Voices across the world. TaLI initiated flag bearing in 2014 and this program has made a lot of impact amongst young women.

Mentorship is a unique relationship between successful women and young women who are still trying to make it in life. This program is a platform for these generational gaps to share their challenges, fears and dreams, at the same time to be provided with guidance, support, sponsorship and mentorship to reach their personal goals in both their careers and in their own personal lives. It provides a ladder for young women who are just starting at life, with women who have made it and who want to see them successful. These women also provide exposure opportunities for their mentees.

The mentors and mentees both have to be committed to see the relationship grow and TaLI through Vital Voices has provided mentors and mentees with some guidelines in engaging in successful mentorship relationships. This year, TaLI, in partnership with a global mentorship organisation Vital Voices, and largely coordinated by one of the young woman outcome of the TaLI mentorship programme Trish Bopoto, hosted a Mentorship night at the University of Zimbabwe on the 8th of March 2017 to mark the International Women’s day and the launch of the 6 month mentorship programme for young women. It linked young mentees from the University of Zimbabwe (UZ) and Women’s University in Africa (WUA), with mentors who are successful women in different spheres such as business, politics and management positions with university students from the University of Zimbabwe and the Women’s University in Africa.

Prominent women such as Gender Commissioner Naome Chimbetete, Marketing General Manager for Econet Mellany Msengezi-Mariri, ADP Leader & Politician Marcellina Chikosha, Cyrex Business Co-Founder Annabell Ruzvidzo-Gakaka, Jewell Magazine & Mufaro Toys Founder, Tsitsi Mutendi, ProGroup Managing Director Tindings Chimphondah, Communications and PR Expert Yvonne Gundu, Toyota Human Resources Manager Yeukai Gatsi, Crisis Coalition Leader Memory Kadau, Urgent Action Fund Strategic Programmes Manager Connie Nawaigo-Zhuwarara and TaLI Board Member Memory Darikwa, graced the event as they connected with mentees.

The event was intimate as the women shared personal experiences. Many mentors and mentees outlined their goals and a number of them planned follow-up meetings. A number of young women have since provided feedback that this event is just what they need, to interact with women they considered distant role models.

8 March is an International Women’s Day celebrated around the globe. The international day has been set aside to acknowledge the difficulties women and girls experience in their lives, and this day has been further utilised to reflect on gains on their emancipation by communities, nations and global leaders, and how to tackle the existing challenge. Many have further used it to launch women and girl empowerment programmes across the world.