There is no other Anelisa in this world, so Anelisa, you are not in competition with anyone else!

Anelisa MaDabane Mdyogolo



Peace observer Anelisa MaDabane Mdyogolo, 31, is inspired by the work she is doing in Mzamomhle informal settlement on the outskirts of Gonubie in the Eastern Cape. She’s part of a project that teaches women and child-headed households how to farm in their own backyards, and how to eat the correct kinds of food. Organic farming is something people can start on a small scale, but it has multiple health benefits, she says. Her work for the Institute of Justice and Reconciliation and the Electoral Institute for Sustainable Democracy in Africa involves increasing women’s participation in decision-making in politics, peace and security, and in conflict management structures and processes, to help create and sustain peace at all levels. In her spare time, Anelisa collects toiletries and “pre-loved” school shoes, which she then donates to the schools she visits when she is doing assessments. The challenges she faces on a daily basis in her work are a shortage funding and not being able to access people in deep rural areas, but she is encouraged by working with humanitarian organisations and people, whose compassion makes her own journey seem that much more doable.


National Senior Certificate in Versatile Broadcasting, NQFL 5, (Waste Management)


I’m involved in programmes that assist disadvantaged households, especially at this time of the year (winter). On the 20th Anniversary of South African Women in Dialogue (Sawid) we were taught about the importance of “ploughing a seed”. The aim is to teach women and child-headed homes about farming in their backyards and maintaining a healthy lifestyle by limiting the eating of unhealthy foods.
We have been working in Mzamomhle Township, an informal settlement in the suburbs of Gonubie, Eastern Cape, with very high rates of unemployment, substance abuse and crime. In Mzamomhle there are many child-headed homes with no source of income.
Organic food is produced by growing food without the use of synthetic chemicals or genetically modified components.
We teach the community about growing food at home and maintain a healthy lifestyle by eating healthy, organic food and reducing the intake of harmful fats.
Eating healthy not only makes you feel good, it also reduces the risks of health problems such as high blood sugar and heart disease.


I have watched so many humanitarians and how they engage with the destitute. The compassion they have makes my journey worthwhile, and doable.