Gugu Nonjinge


24 year old  Communications and Advocacy Officer at the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation

Gugu Nonjinge is an education and girl advocate, she has run campaigns and advocacy work under her NPO (Gugu Nonjinge Education Foundation). She holds a BSc in Mathematics and is a founder of the Numbers Tutorial Program.

In August 2015, she was awarded the Lead SA Hero award for the work that she does for young girls in Africa. She is an ambassador for the Caring4Girls program. Gugu has served on the Dream Girls International Outreach and Mentoring Program as a Committee Member and a Mentor.

Gugu was selected to be part of the Preparing Global Leaders Academy in Amman, Jordan in 2015.

Moreover, she has been invited to speak in a number of gatherings and events such as the LOYD Sessions in Cape Town, The #FiresideChat hosted by UN Women Global Champion Alysia Silberg and ChangeThePlatform.

Gugu has reliable experience in print media, communications and digital media through working with GLAMOUR SA, British Council Connect ZA, Live Magazine SA and This Is Africa, just to mention a few.

Above all, Gugu is the cofounder of LeBrunchSA a company that hosts facilitated social brunch/high tea/luncheons that engage young women from diverse backgrounds to connect and network.

In March 2017, Gugu Nonjinge was awarded the Social Cohesion and Civil Society Youth Award by the National Youth Development Agency.

My greatest achievements thus far include:

  • Starting a company (LeBrunchSA) with my close friend. A company aimed at bringing together women form diverse backgrounds.
  • Doing what is close to my heart. I believe that my calling is as unique as a unique as a fingerprint. I’ve offered it to others in the form of others and I’ve allowed the universe to lead me. That to me is one of my greatest achievement.

My sister inspires me.  Knowing that she knows she can be anything and everything is the most inspiring and satisfying thing ever.

I want to be known as a young Afrioptimist at the forefront of women empowerment in Africa advocating for recognition of the needs and aspirations of girls and young women.

I will continue to push boundaries by: 

  • Advocating for education and girls through enhanced action and deliberate policy influence.
  • Creating a space where men are encouraged to be a part of the dialogue, championing women for power positions. If I don’t act. I’ll be doing a disservice to women. Therefore, I’ll do whatever I can to create awareness about gender equality

To my 16 year old self, 

Dear best, to be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to change you is the greatest accomplishment, be mindful of the fact that every next level of your life will demand a different version of you so be calm in the change, focus and follow through. Remember to never bend your head, always look the world straight in the face. Pray, wait…hope!