Sasol Secunda Chemicals Operations hosted their annual Women@Work Dialogue Forum with the theme ‘Pull her up’ on Friday, 30 November. The morning started off with a safety briefing and the women were all very excited to get the morning started. Everyone was dressed very casually in jeans and sneakers for a self-defence demonstration later in the morning. The topic of conversation was around how to guard against sexual harassment and gender-based violence and how women need to stand together and support each other in this fight. Ronel Goosen led the debate and a fruitful discussion on sexual harassment in the workplace resulted from this session. The highlight of the event was without a doubt the inspiring talk delivered by Leanne Mannas, a multiple award-winning presenter and currently the anchor on SABC’s Morning Live. She related how she was told by her woman boss when she started out as a young journalist, that she would never amount to anything more than a back office worker after she had asked the woman to please give her more opportunities for growth. She walked out of that office, never to return and today has the satisfaction to know that woman sees her on Morning Live every day. Another challenge she never thought she would be able to achieve, was to summit Kilimanjaro. When she told her husband that she was challenged to do it, he immediately agreed to do it with her. Again, against all odds she made it. She warned that we often create our own ceilings in life and that we should challenge ourselves to be more and do more than we believe is possible. After the excitement of Leanne Mannas’ talk everyone fuelled up with some coffee and muffins. The ladies had a big surprise waiting for them. Two of the fighters from Dominator’s Den and the owner, Cedric “The Dominator” Doyle, Smit “Malboer” Steyn and Paul “Piksteel” Ronge, attended the event to teach the ladies a few self-defense tricks. The first thing Cedric said that rang true for a lot of ladies, should they find themselves in a hijacking situation, to move to the passenger side of the car, get the child/ren and get out. If the perpetrators pull you out of the car, try and grab your keys and use the keys as a bargaining chip to get the child/ren out of the car. The ladies also learned some moves to protect themselves against an attacker while the guys from Dominator’s Den walked through the crowd and helped the ladies perfecting these moves. Cedric also informed the ladies that there are Krav Maga (self-defence) classes available in Secunda, should they be interested. All the ladies received a very fitting gift pack containing pepper spray for protection. The day was a huge success, well enjoyed by all and very well organised.
– Ané Prinsloo