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Where our journey started

Khwela means “to climb” in isiXhosa, one of the wider spoken languages of South Africa, and the mother tongue of one of Khwela’s co-founders, Asanda Daraza. What started off as a brainstorming session on a couch in Cape Town in 2017, soon became a reality when Khwela won an international competition with Booking.com to run a pilot project. The idea? That travel is truly transformative, and that through travel and reflective practice women from under-resourced communities in Cape Town could shift their world view, embrace a growth mindset and learn from experience and skills training how to work in the tourism industry. In the first two years, 80% of the Khwela participants on average went from being unemployed to finding work in the tourism industry.

Enter: COVID-19.

As the pandemic shook the globe, the travel industry fell to its knees as people stopped travelling. Khwela took a pause, as we considered how we could continue to self-empower women in a time where physical travel and learning was not allowed. Through this time, Khwela Womxn was born. Experiential learning and the power of sisterhood remained key to our purpose: that we believe womxn have the power to change communities, but we had to re-design the program for a low-touch, high impact, post-COVID-19 world.

OUR MISSION

We help womxn by equipping them with opportunities for experiential learning and increased access to safe peer-mentorship spaces, so that they can transform their mindsets and uplift themselves personally and professionally.

OUR VISION

Our vision is to connect a virtual community of 100 000 self-empowered womxn who are able to further inspire others in their community through access to experiential learning, credible education as well as peer-mentorship.

OUR VALUES

Experiential Learning towards Personal Growth

Embrace the Hustle. Embrace Collaboration

Show Up and Be Brave

Back Yourself, but NO Bullshit

THE TEAM

Kim Whitaker
Co-founder
Asanda Daraza
Co-founder
Angela Sharp
Product Manager
Grizelda la Cock
Operations Manager