This year marks the 5th edition of the Lady Khama Half Marathon (RUN 21), which will for the first time, include a sporting expo where various Botswana National Sport Commission (BNSC) registered sporting codes will exhibit and demonstrate their sporting codes alongside the Half Marathon activities.
This event is a large part of the Trust’s annual fundraising activities, with all proceeds going towards the support of vulnerable women and children across Botswana. The Lady Khama Charitable Trust’s purpose is to help improve the lives of vulnerable women and children in Botswana. The Trust aims to achieve this through charitable and educational activities in Botswana through raising and investing funds to support this mission. The Lady Khama Charitable Trust was established in 2002 in Lady Ruth Khama’s honour with the objective of continuing the charitable work that Lady Khama dedicated much of her life to.
The Trust supports and initiates charitable undertakings throughout the country, particularly targeting gender- based organisations and those which assist disadvantaged children. His Excellency the President of Botswana, Ian Khama is the founding Chairman of the Trust and has since assumed the role of Patron.
Speaking to the media this week, the Trust’s Secretary, Marcus Ter Haar said they support a core group of organisations annually that have been selected because of their historic connection with Lady Ruth Khama and their continued good work in their respective areas of focus, including the Botswana Red Cross Society, Childline Botswana and SOS Children’s Villages.
He said the beneficiaries apply for funds using the Trust’s grant application system, which they use while assessing requests. The grant application system is designed to help target the funds towards organisations that are result- orientated, value transparent with good governance, and have financial accountability and stability. Ter Haar said the Marathon which is in its 5th year is one of their fastest growing fundraising in terms of runner and spectator participation. “After our call for partners in 2016, we are pleased to announce our new lead partner, O3 Beverages who join the RUN 21 family as the lead partner for 2017- 2019.
According to Ter Haar, a lead partner makes financial provisions for operational costs, easing the burden of sourcing funds to host a quality event such as the RUN 21 Trail run. This enables the organisation to target registration sales towards specific projects that are either new or existing thus completing the projects sooner. He also pointed out that since 2013, they have experienced a 75% attendance increase annually, in 2016 they had a total of 1573 runners and raised over P 100, 000. 00. This year they hope to have over 2000 registered runners and will raise over P 200, 000. 00.
He also revealed at the press briefing that they have invited the first Motswana to ride and complete the Dakar Rally, Vincent Crossby to lead the 10 km runners on his bike. Another local celebrity, former 400 metres World Champion Amantle Montsho will also participate in the marathon.
It is important to note that the RUN 21 Trail Run is unlike any other running race in Botswana, Ter Haar highlighted, adding that they tried to move away from the norm and bring a different and exciting experience to their supporters. RUN 21 is a Trail Run, meaning running on road and off road, with the route split into three sections i.e. 5 km fun run/ walk, 10 km and the 21 km run. All three routes will run along various main roads and green- ways across Gaborone. The Start/ Finish line, is at the National Stadium and the route has been modified accordingly.
The RUN 21 Trail Run will be held on Sunday 9th March from 0530 am and 0930 am and some roads will be used by runners/ walkers. In 2016 the Trust launched the Lady Khama WELLNESS ARENA, which provides a platform where sport enthusiasts have access to participate and explore alternative sporting activities regardless of their health or stamina under one roof, for free.
A job, lucrative or not, is a job after all. Sometimes one has to compromise in order to make a living, few people get a job their dream jobs. But once in a while there is an emergence of people who listen to their inner calling to pursue their passion.
The founder and head designer of Butterfly Couture, Chawa July is one of those few people who left their job to pursue their passion. An inspiring fact about July is that she is a self-taught fashion designer, she used to copy patterns from her old clothes until she learnt how to draw them, and she also searched information from the internet to increase her knowledge and skills.
“It all started as a hobby from my love for beautiful dresses and I started adjusting and making clothes for myself. Gradually people around me started to take interest in my craft and the hobby slowly grew into a profitable business,” July said.
The 41 year fashion designer from Molepolole worked her way up in the Procurement space for over 10 years. She worked at Stanbic Bank, Kromberg & Schubert and Clover Dairy as a Procurement supervisor. Her last job before she entered the fashion industry was a Manager for Contacts & Sourcing at a Facilities Management Company.
She established her fashion house in October 2019 and it has become synonyms with elegant wedding gowns and exquisite evening wear. July said when designing she is inspired by various aspects such as the client’s personality, the mood of the event and the theme. She further mentioned that every opportunity is to show her craft so she always aims to please.
“Every Butterfly Couture piece must represent the elegance and the creativity the brand is about,” she said. Butterfly Couture has adorned beauty queens; Miss Botswana 2021/2022 Ambrociah Samboko at Miss Universe in South Korea and Miss Botswana 2019,Oweditse Fafah Phirinyane during her reign of which is the highlight of her career. They have also marked their presence in a few fashion events locally and in the neighbouring countries.”
They showcased at The Grand Palm Wedding Expo, Masa Fashion Show, Miss Botswana Fashion Show and Sacunda plus Size Fashion Show. The will also be showcasing at Gabs July Fashion Show on the 15th of July alongside the South African designer, popularly known as the King of glamour David Tlale.
July also identified that one of the challenges they face in the couture is that, it’s a seasonal business. “There are times in the year when the business is great and challenging. Winter in particular, is difficult time to stay afloat as there aren’t as many events that people are inspired to dress spectacularly for,” she said. She further said that her aim is to be a prime couturier of choice in Botswana.
“Craft like your life depends on it because every happy client is 10 more referrals” is what she said when asked to serve a word of wisdom to people hoping to make it in the fashion industry.
The Botswana Gospel Music Awards (BOGMA) and the Annual Gospel Awards (AGA) are said to be no longer in existence and a joint venture project has been put up that will carry out the awarding of gospel musicians.
The new entity has been established as Gospel Music Awards, which is a project at this moment is nearer to dishing out the first Gospel Awards under the leadership of the dissolved entities (BOGMA and AGA). “The difference is the same, it is just that the two projects were run by different minds which had differing objectives,” said the project coordinator, Letsweletse Moshabi when asked what the difference was between the two previous awards.
He added that at this junction their focus is on the future of the gospel musicians and they would like to direct their energies to the new project and forgo the past projects. “The Music market especially the gospel genre is too small and that basically means the very small market was experiencing the imbalance in the supply and demand forces. At that stage, supply was more than the demand so the reason for the joint forces is to allow the supply and demand forces to readjust and form equilibrium,” added Moshabi.
The mandate and objectives of the project are to recognize and award gospel music talent, to create awareness of the Botswana gospel music industry and to create a platform where fellow musicians may exchange ideas and network amongst themselves and approach international markets in cohesion.
The first of these joint awards will be held on the 27th August 2022 at Molapo Showcase under the theme ‘Cohesiveness to Build’ where about 18 categories will be up for grabs.
The Kumnandi Ekhaya musik festival will be held on the 30th September 2022 at Thamaga village. The event coincides with the release of famous host, Dj Ngwazi’s first album called ‘spring day’ on the 2nd of September 2022.
The Thamaga born and raised Lefika Lushen Kebatlege is a disc jockey and a music producer signed under WanitwaMos Entertainment in South Africa. Famously known as Dj Ngwazi and formally known as DJ superstar, he has really worked hard to become one of the finest export DJs the country has produced. Internationally, he is described as a DJ from South African because of his works with popular music artist Master KG.
Meanwhile, the music festival will feature South African artists, Makhazi, Master KG, Prince Benza and Mthunzi. They will also be joined by some of the big local artists, Franco, Vee Mampeezy, among others. “The tickets of the concert will be available at Spar stores, webticket and Kings bar. There will be three categories for VIP tickets, the one that goes for P1000, P1500 and P2200,” said the Kumnandi Ekhaya musik fest promoter Sadie Swartz of Saysay Entertainment.
“We have a new system to tackle the cry of promoters about security at the events. We will have a team of 100 security men, 10 horses and 15 dogs. We also agreed with the police to help with traffic control and no tickets will be sold at the gate to avoid circulation of money which can attract thieves,” said Kagiso Gaodumelwe from All Night Security.
“I started deejaying back in the days when I was still schooling at Kagiso Senior School and I never stopped working towards my career since then. I have a career in South Africa, since 2018 when Master KG took me in and his support as a brother has taken me to places,” said DJ Ngwazi describing his career journey.
“Kumnandi Ekhaya is Zulu language which means ‘go monate ko gae’ in Setswana. The name came about as a way of inviting my South African fans and supporters to my home village Thamaga to come experience the joy that comes with celebrating our freedom and independence. I used isiZulu because it’s the dominant language in South Africa,” explained Dj Ngwazi.
“The concert will be held in an open space which was used for agricultural purposes and we would like to call it ‘Ko Legoleng’. With this concert I want to redeem the dignity of our village because we once had the cases of youth who were terrorizing the community, beating up people in the streets and stealing and these was really a concern in our community because they were tarnishing the village name,” said Dj Ngwazi.
The purpose of this concert is to empower the community of Thamaga and local artist, more especially artist from Thamaga village like, Kgabo Sereto traditional group. There will be a litter picking campaign around the village before the launch of the concert .The sponsors which are already on board are Dladleng Entertainment and Kings bar and there are still more sponsors to be revealed.
”As the Kumnandi Ekhaya musik fest management, we are going to buy food combos and take them to Thamaga village Kgotla so they can be donated to the less privileged and orphans. Starting from October we will be donating pads to all Junior Schools in Thamaga,” said Dj Ngwazi. Dj Ngwazi’s motivational words to other artist and everyone else; work hard, be patient and be determined.