Monday, August 30, 2010

My Experiences At The Women's Show

The weekend was nice and quiet the way I like. I attended the Women's Show at the Cocacola Dome in Northgate.

A friend of mine had a bunch of free tickets from Bonitas, the medical aid people(she's a broker).

A group of us had fun hanging out, chatting with the various vendors and trying to extricate ourselves from the more aggressive sales people.

I still managed to spend money I didn't have on things didn't even know I needed. But, it was all worthwhile, I think, so I'm not complaining.

My worst experience came from the Absa ATM machine outside the expo premises. I had to ask a middle-aged couple that also wanted to withdraw money to help me; and they also struggled because the machine was not reading the stripe on the card at all. I hope they fix it quickly, because it's really annoying and one of my friends walked away rather than bothering with the machine, which s lost revenue because some of the really small vendors in the expo did not have credit card facilities.

My best experiences came from the female security guard at the gate, who asked me which language I preferred to communicate in ( when I asked for directions) and then switching to that language. Thank you for not assuming I speak Zulu and then getting annoyed when I can't, as many security and even shop assistants do.

I also loved meeting Lindiwe Makena, an organic vegetable farmer from Phokeng ( where i come from). Lindiwe sells her produce through Wensleydale Farms, which delivers fresh, organic produce to customers' homes across the country. Nope, I didn't know of Lindiwe until we met, but now that we have, I'm definitely going to check out her operation.

I was also bowled over by Boitumelo Mabusela, of Eco Therapy Products. (see woman wearng brown in the image)

That woman has energy! And she's charming. And knowledgeable about her products and their uses and impact. So it was rather fascinating to learn that the business was not her first career option - she's actually a CA turned businesswoman. I'm buying some of her packs as Christmas gifts for my sisters, mother and some in-laws. Definitely beats store-bought options and the price was also very reasonable. BTW, they do offer online purchasing too.

I also bought some Pure Herbal Remedies while at the show. My stomach was cramping very badly since Thursday, and a lunch of samp and mince seemed to have upset it very badly. Their IBS formula provided some relief ( in addition to my usual meds), but I'm going to the doctor today for a check up. Just to see if my condition is getting worse or something.

Spent part of the morning finalising my winning selection for the Sangonet Web NGO Awards, which will be announced at the Fundraising in the Digital World conference starting this week. There was one organsation (which I can't name for now), which is doing something that impresses me greatly. Basically, they encourage their supporters to use fundraising tools that they have on hand to launch their own fundraising initatives. Which means, this organisation can practically has access to an unlimited number of affiliates raising money for their cause. I wish more non-profits were using this tool, epecially because it's free.

Anyhoo, have a great week.

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