Mthabisi Tshuma, Showbiz Correspondent
Prominent businesswomen in Bulawayo are set to convene at the City Club, next to Galen House, this Saturday for the Bulawayo Ladies founder, Diana Chinunda’s 39th birthday bash.
Bulawayo Ladies which was formed in 2010, is a support group of over 150 women who are involved in various businesses. They empower and support each other financially and also meet from time to time to discuss business.
With a focus on infrastructure, catering, weaving, farming, poultry and recently educational funding projects, the group aims to eliminate the mentality of women being dependent on their spouses.
One of the organisers of the birthday bash who identified herself as MaNyathi said the party is set to paint the city red as they celebrate their leader.
“She’s been a rock among the group as she has made us believe in ourselves and made a difference in our lives, which is why we’re honouring her with this gift,” said MaNyathi.
She said the event was open to everyone with an entry charge of R50 or equivalent set to be charged at the gate. Doors will open at 3pm for ladies with the male counterparts allowed entry after 6pm.
The birthday girl who among other ventures, has a catering company, said she is overwhelmed with the birthday bash which was made possible by her colleagues.
“When I got wind that they were organising a party for me about a month ago, I literally cried as it showed that we are one. With the preparations almost 99.9% now, I want to thank the Bulawayo Ladies for not losing focus on the group’s vision of unity,” said Chinunda.
She added the city at large should come in their numbers and be merry as there will be a “shalast” vibe as the shebeen feel is commonly referred to in Bulawayo.
“As the old adage says that life begins at 40, I urge the city to come in their numbers as I celebrate the pre-entry to life,” said the soft-spoken woman.
Recently, the Bulawayo Ladies set up an educational fund for struggling children around the city, a fund they will officially launch on Saturday. One of the beneficiaries Lydia Sibanda, a student at a local tertiary institution said: “Looking at the current economic situation, the Bulawayo Ladies group came in at the right time as I was about to quit my schooling as I couldn’t keep up with the exorbitant fees and transport costs.” – @mthabisi_mthire