America’s leading infectious diseases expert Dr Anthony Fauci says South Africa appears to have pulled together in a unified way to fight Covid-19, attributing the resurgence in his own country to each of the 50 states following their own strategy.

Fauci, who is Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and has advised six presidents in 36 years, was a guest speaker last night during a webinar streamed in South Africa.

He says everybody has got to pull together and that it was his impression that in some countries, like South Africa, things can be done more centrally.

Watch the full session below:

Cape Town NGOs have been invited to apply for a slice of more than R14 million in grant funding, that has been made available by the City.

The funding is for registered organisations working with vulnerable groups, and which complements the Social Development and Early Childhood Development Department’s objectives.

It comes just months after the City signed memoranda of agreement with a number of organisations in the same sectors to provide humanitarian relief and services through the disbursement of R20 million in grant-in-aid funding for a six-month period until the end of 2020.

The funding is available to qualifying organisations who work with the following groups:

• Youth Development and education
• Early childhood development (ECD)
• Gender-based violence (GBV)
• Persons with disabilities
• LGBTQQIA+
• Street people

All applications must be accompanied by:

• A copy of the latest, audited financial statements or audit certificate if grant funding was received from the City in previous financial years
• A copy of the organisation’s constitution
• A copy of the organisation’s latest municipal rates and services accounts (if applicable)
• A zero-rated VAT invoice if confirmed as a VAT vendor
• Valid tax clearance certificate (applications will not be accepted without a valid tax clearance accompanying the application)
• Date of establishment of organisation
• Type of organisation (NPO, Section 21 company)
• Details of previous funding by the City
• Details of other funding received from the City for the current financial year
• Detailed description of project to be implemented
• Information on how the allocation of a grant-in-aid will promote job creation and the estimated number of job opportunities it will create
• Detailed breakdown of project costs
• Project start and end date
• A detailed business plan explaining funding proposal applied for

The closing date for applications is 27 November 2020. Applicants can contact Genevieve Adams on 021 400 1139 or SocialDevelopment@capetown.gov.za for official grant application forms or more information.

A radiant Shudufhadzo Musida has been crowned Miss South Africa 2020 at the glittering pageant finale held for the first time in the Mother City.

The 24-year-old – who comes from Ha-Masia in Limpopo – has a Bachelor of Social Sciences in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from the University of Pretoria. She is currently doing her BA Honours in International Relations at the University of Witwatersrand. She will receive R1 million in cash as well as a further R2 million worth of sponsorships and prizes, including the use of a luxury Sandton apartment and a Mercedes-Benz cabriolet for a year.

First runner-up was medical doctor Thato Mosehle (25) from Klerksdorp in the North West who received R250 000 in cash. Second runner-up Natasha Joubert (23), a B Com graduate from Pretoria, Gauteng, collected R100 000.

For the first time in the history of the Miss South Africa pageant, the trio will represent the country at the world’s three most prestigious pageants. Previously, the Miss South Africa Organisation has sent a representative to both Miss Universe and Miss World, but will also now be fielding a candidate to Miss Supranational. It will only be revealed at a later date which contestant will go to which pageant.

Shudufhadzo’s mother, Thandi is a real estate agent and she has a 13-year-old sister Zwonka.

In her Miss South Africa acceptance speech, Musida said: “It took an entire village to get me here and I would like to thank all of you for being my village. I stand here today as your Miss South Africa with immense pride and joy to be representing such a beautiful nation – one of the first Venda women, but certainly not the last – to become Miss South Africa. I stand here as an advocate for educational and economic empowerment of women and children and mental health awareness – honoured to be an ambassador of this beautiful nation.

“Through this platform, I plan to continue and build on the beautiful and powerful legacy left by former Miss South Africa title holders, and continue to carry the baton of woman empowerment that the Miss South Africa Organisation is built on and continues to strive for.

“I plan to bring more awareness to mental health, especially in rural and disadvantaged areas, because I truly believe that we need to work on the mind for any change to come about in this country. I plan to mobilise various stakeholders and the nation so we can bring about educational empowerment through the tackling of issues such as period poverty among young girls, workshops that teach children about the importance of mental health from a young age, and mentorship programmes for young women so they can be empowered to be agents of their own future.

“I will continue the fight against food insecurity in rural communities because children can only be their best at school when their basic needs are met. I believe that all of this will continue the efforts of bringing about economic empowerment in this country as more children will be given a fair chance at becoming active members of the economy through educational empowerment.

“This journey has been one of the highlights of my life – one that I will never forget and will cherish for as long as I live. Before this competition started, I had dreamed of helping women and children, and this platform has made that a reality even before the crown was placed on my head. This platform has not only empowered me, but it has caused a ripple effect that has empowered others too. It has empowered a nation of girls just like me, and shows that all dreams are valid irrespective of your background. My life has been changed forever and the lives of the generations that come after me, so for that – Ndo livhuwa.”

The Miss South Africa Play Your Part Ambassador Award 2020 – presented in conjunction with Brand South Africa – was given to women empowerment organisation Sisters in Solidarity which supports women through business development strategies and business registration education workshops.

Founder of Home of Hope for Girls, Mam Khanyi Motsa, was named the Miss South Africa Organisation’s unsung heroine 2020. Proceeds of the sale of the song I Am Woman – performed at the pageant by Sho Madjozi and Ami Faku – will go to the Home of Hope for Girls.

The event, hosted by Nomzamo Mbatha at the Table Bay Hotel and broadcast live on M-Net and Mzansi Magic, was a spectacular affair with entertainment provided by some of the who’s who of the SA music industry including Sho Madjozi, Mi Casa, Ami Faku, Sun-El Musician and Jimmy Nevis.

The Miss South Africa 2020 judges were reigning Miss Universe Zozibini Tunzi, queen of SA talk and radio jock Anele Mdoda, previous Miss South Africa title holder (1996) and businesswoman Peggy-Sue Khumalo, actress and entrepreneur Leandie du Randt and actress Kim Engelbrecht.

A whole month has been dedicated to celebrate of our favourite toothy friends – sharks!

These magnificent animals are often portrayed as vicious hunters, scary stalkers or single-minded predators in the media, but what really makes these misunderstood animals tick?

The Two Oceans Aquarium will keep us all in the loop on social media and their blog throughout October as they take a Sharktober dive into answering all your sharkiest questions:

How smart are sharks? Can they swim backwards? Are there really 117 kinds of South African shark?

The shark-themed blogs featured on the Aquarium’s website during this month,  are fast becoming a comprehensive collection of amazing shark facts and answer some of those questions that you might have wondered about.

Visit https://www.aquarium.co.za/ for more!

Photo credit: Guido Zsilavecz