The Gender Mainstreaming Awards (GMA) 2021 nominations are open, with an aim to reward organizations and individuals at the forefront of advancing the business case for gender diversity in Africa. The award ceremony is set to take place throughout Africa on 9th September, 2021. The 2021 sponsors for the awards are Accenture (naming rights sponsor), ABSA and Barloworld.

The awards have been a platform for sharing stories, strategies and facilitating the conversation for organizations to participate and share best practice in corporate gender intelligence, over the past eight years of existence.

As an initiative of Business Engage, this year’s 9th GMA ceremony follows the successful first ever virtual ceremony held in 2020, which was watched by over 2000 attendees across Africa despite a raging pandemic.

“The year 2020 brought with it some unprecedented changes the world over and as with every industry, we had no choice but to quickly adapt. So, we made the decision that global lockdowns or not, the Gender Mainstreaming Awards experience must never stop”, said Colleen Larsen, Chief Executive of Business Engage and President of the 30% Club East and Southern Africa.

Business Engage is calling for nominations from companies that have developed initiatives and are making strides to accelerate diversity with an emphasis on gender mainstreaming.

Submitting for applications is free of charge. Interested applicants can apply on the Gender Mainstreaming Awards website. Entries close on 31st May, 2021.

For company nominations there are various categories including

  • Women on Boards Award
  • Equal Representation and Participation Award
  • Women Empowerment in the Workplace Award
  • Investing in Young Women Award
  • Mainstreaming Gender and Disability Award

The two individual categories are

  • Inclusive Leader Award
  • Positive Role Model Award

“This year the GMAs are seeking to celebrate companies in Africa and we have selected some of the most prominent business leaders who are an excellent representation of what the awards stand for to be judges in the different regions”, added Larsen.

Ntombi Mhangwani, Experience Architect and Lead Women’s Forum at Accenture Interactive Africa said, “The impact of COVID-19 will continue to allow societies to be less equal, more divided and poorer if they are left unattended. It is therefore important to recognize through initiatives such as Gender Mainstreaming Awards; women as equal partners and key actors in the economy. Leaders should also see the pandemic as an opportunity to reset the economy by planning a recovery based on the principle of inclusiveness.”

Tantaswa Fubu, Group Executive Human Capital, Barloworld said, “At Barloworld, we believe that as a responsible and responsive corporate, it is our duty and responsibility to ensure that the demographics of our country are reflected in the people of Barloworld, especially at the senior levels. It is for this reason that we have been taking and continue to take deliberate actions to redress the past, ensuring that we have amazing women at senior leadership.”