Celebrating 25 years of South Africa’s democracy and investing in southern Africa’s future, Shared Interest hosts its 25th anniversary gala in NYC

April 01, 2019 at 11:48 am | Events

Francis Akhalbey

Francis Akhalbey | Staff Writer

April 01, 2019 at 11:48 am | Events

Celebrating 25 years of South Africa’s democracy and investing in Southern Africa’s future, Shared Interest, a leading New York-based non-profit social investment fund, will host its 25th Anniversary Gala event on Thursday, April 25, 2019, at the Edison Ballroom in New York City.

During the special Anniversary Gala event, Shared Interest will honor South African Playwright and Actor Dr. John Kani, with the Voices of Freedom Award, and former South African Public Protector and Advocate Thuli Madonsela with the Leadership for Justice Award. The Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR) will also be honored with the Investing in Transformation Award, alongside corporate honoree South African Airways (SAA) which will be honored with the Corporate Leadership Award.

Dr. John Kani

Hosted by South African talk show host and entrepreneur Felicia Mabuza-Suttle, the 25th Anniversary Gala will feature a VIP and cocktail reception, followed by dinner and live entertainment provided by Malawian musician, Masauko. This year, Shared Interest will host a Freedom After-Party starting at 9:30 P.M. to continue the evening’s celebrations with DJ AQ spinning the latest hits and Afrobeats on the second floor. Sponsoring the gala are Face2Face Africa, Fordham University, South African Airways, Trillium Asset Management and Walden Asset Management.

“As Shared Interest celebrates the first generation of South Africa’s democracy and our own work to create opportunities for the country’s next generation – we honor those who have helped people in South Africa and the U.S. begin to bridge the gap between apartheid and inclusion, oppression and opportunity, powerlessness and potential.” said Donna Katzin Executive Director of Shared Interest. “We humbly celebrate this milestone by honoring great South Africans like Dr. John Kani for his dedication to raising global awareness and the voices of victims of apartheid, and Advocate Thuli Madonsela for her tireless leadership in in South Africa’s campaign for public accountability in the service of equality and justice for all”.

More than 300 US and African activists, artists, civic and corporate leaders and development practitioners will gather alongside top diplomats and key US policymakers and influencers to commemorate the first 25 years of the “new” South Africa and recommit to the continuing development of the country. The evening will also celebrate Shared Interest’s critical role in helping “unbanked” smallholder farmers, emerging business owners and homeowners to access credit for the last 25 years.

“I am delighted to be honored by Shared Interest with the Voices of Freedom Award. As individuals we should incorporate social justice and activism into our work as part of living our lives in a purposeful way,” said Dr. John Kani. “I will continue to dedicate myself to leveraging South African theater and the creative industries overall to be used as an influential platform and force for continued activism and social good as we embark upon the next 25 years of our democracy.”

Dr. John Kani is an award-winning actor, director, and playwright who has led the movement to use South African theater as a platform to speak out against apartheid. He has appeared both in theater and on the big screen in productions including Blood Knot, Driving Miss Daisy, Othello, The Lion, and the Lamb, Sizwe is Dead and many more. Dr. Kani has received numerous awards and accolades including a Tony Award for Best Actor, an OBIE Award for his contribution to theatre in the world, an Avante Hall of Fame Award from the South African Film, Television and Advertising Industry and a Leadership and Service Award from South African Breweries for his extraordinary contribution to Arts and Culture in South Africa. The current Chairman of the Apartheid Museum, Dr. Kani had a pivotal role in the 2019 Oscar Awardwinning blockbuster movie Black Panther.

For nearly two decades, Professor Thuli Madonsela was South Africa’s renowned Public Protector and helped draft the final constitution of South Africa promulgated by former President Nelson Mandela. Professor Madonsela also laid the foundations for today’s national campaign against unscrupulous companies’ attempts to “capture” the South African state. She is currently a South African advocate and Professor of Law, and currently holds a chair in social justice at Stellenbosch University.

The Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR) will receive the Investing in Transformation Award for its visionary leadership in galvanizing investors to press for a peaceful end to apartheid and advance human rights in South Africa. In the process it helped accelerate the abolition of apartheid and transition to democracy, while fueling the movement for socially responsible investment.

South African Airways (SAA) will receive the Corporate Leadership Award for its role as a beacon of corporate social responsibility, while bringing people of the U.S. and South Africa together to enhance mutual understanding and collaboration to support philanthropic and investment initiatives.

For ticket information, please visit www.sharedinterest.org or email: shukura@sharedinterest.org. Individual gala tickets begin at $600; table packages range from $6,000 to $30,000. Freedom After-Party tickets are $125, $2,500 and $5,000.

To stay up to date with Shared Interest and the 25th Anniversary Gala, follow us on Instagram @SharedInterest_ , Twitter @sharedinterest_ and like our Facebook page.

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