A friend asked me who I’d like to meet and feature on Womandla.com. I paused, not because I did not know, but because I had no rehearsed answer.
I responded and said I would want to meet any woman who is the first. The first at achieving a massive milestone, the first at attempting or conducting an experiment or the first at innovating and creating something life-changing until the first becomes the new normal.
One thing I know is that I look up to various women for their success and ability to break glass ceilings, who then provide opportunities to those who come after them.
With the recent exposure of international films and stories of ground-breaking, history-making women namely Hidden Figures and recently The Immortal Life of Hendrietta Lacks, I remembered why I even started Womandla.com.
Womandla is looking for Africa’s hidden figures. The female African heroines who continuously change the status quo, lead in politics, the community, non-governmental organizations and those who fight blood, sweat and tears for women and children’s rights. These women hardly receive recognition or media attention yet they still quietly lead and make an impact.
Can you imagine how many women are out there bubbling and brewing with inspiring stories of their latest and nascent, life-giving dreams with no one there to tell their stories, record them or even create African movies and educational coursework about them?
Womandla exists to document, inspire and feature in textbooks that future generations will one day learn and study from.
Womandla is not interested in the figures but exists for the difference women make.
We want to take uniquely African stories to the rest of the world.
A group of friends and I went to watch Hidden Figures last week. (Thank you guys for responding to the invitation). I have no doubt in my mind that they were glad to join the awe-inspiring viewing. We started out with a lovely dinner, a meet-and-greet of sort for those who didn’t know each other, followed by the screening of the movie.
To be honest, I have no words. I have never felt such a vortex of emotion in one sitting.
I was angry, empowered, hopeful and tired all in a space of 2 hours and 7 minutes.
The movie has been aptly described as “The story of a team of African-American women mathematicians who served a vital role in NASA during the early years of the US space program.”
But it was more than that. It brought light to the severity of segregation, it hammered the hindrance of progress that superiority brings and it exposed the evil of racism and sexism to another degree.
The audience applauded when the women stood up to a fight that still graces us in the boardrooms, cockpits and other male dominated spaces, even today.
On a more positive note, the black family structure, father figures and living situations were painted in an aspirant, healthy way – something you never see on the small or big screen.
Hidden Figures is a must watch – for all races – to understand and see how we can ALL bring change to a society, with the stark remnants of a history that still plagues and stalls black people today.
You’ll enjoy the music too. Incredible soundtrack and album by the ever delightful, Pharrell Williams.
.I have been waiting for this movie to come out since I heard about its power and influence. It will be on the big screen as of end February 2017.
“The film shares life of mathematician Katherine Johnson (Taraji P. Henson), budding engineer Mary Jackson (Janelle Monae) and computer supervisor Dorothy Vaughan (Octavia Spencer) — all three brilliant African-American women working at NASA, who served as the brains behind one of the greatest operations in history: the launch of astronaut John Glenn into orbit, a stunning achievement that restored the nation’s confidence, turned around the Space Race, and galvanized the world. The visionary trio crossed all gender and race lines to inspire generations to dream big.”
Anyone in the Cape Town area keen to come together and watch the movie, please respond in the comment section below. If you aren’t in Cape Town but will be watching the movie take a picture, post it on Instagram and hashtag #HiddenFiguresxWomandla and/or cc me @sam_gqomo.
I’ll be creating a collage of all the women in South Africa coming together and celebrating womxn all over the globe.
Let’s go viral and take South Africa by storm.
Watch the Trailer below, book your ticket and grab some popcorn!