/ 7 July 2023

Money Talks Podcast Episode 1 | Unlock women about money

Twitter Podcast Launch 2

Women empowering women: Support that lasts all year round

Money, money, money! On July 5th, the Mail & Guardian, in partnership with African Bank, aired the inaugural episode of the #UnlockWomen Podcasts. Mikateko Chauke, African Bank’s Head of Strategic Communications & PR, shared her insights on money and the myriad responsibilities that women face in their pursuit of financial success. Joining her were moderators Radio Broadcaster Khanya Sosibo and Communications Consultant Doric Sithole.

Sithole initiated the conversation by asking Chauke about the goals of the podcast series in empowering women and why she considers it a worthy endeavour. Chauke acknowledged that there is still much work to be done in empowering women. Women require various skills to uplift themselves, and it is important to continually reinforce this fact.

Women are often underestimated and subjected to negative stereotypes, carrying a significant burden on their shoulders. Chauke explained: “Being a woman comes with clichés and pressures, as we are not only pursuing our careers but also in most cases mothers. Through this series, we hope to empower women and equip them with the necessary skills to effectively manage their finances.”

In these challenging times, women, particularly single mothers, find themselves juggling numerous responsibilities daily. Therefore, when it comes to money, we can all benefit from support, encouragement and effective budgeting tools. Chauke stated: “We must challenge the misconceptions we were taught about money as children. We are all in this together, so let’s collaborate and overcome these challenges.”

Sosibo emphasised the importance of learning new financial management tools, not just during Women’s Month, celebrated in August in South Africa. Chauke agreed, highlighting the need to extend support and a sense of being supported to women throughout the year. She stated, “We tend to ‘wake up’ during Women’s Month to focus on everything pertaining to women and then forget about the issues. This needs to change. We should focus on providing continuous support to women.”

Sithole inquired about how Chauke’s approach to financial affairs changed after becoming a mother. Chauke acknowledged that women often prioritise others, especially as mothers. However, she emphasised the importance of self-care and self-preservation. “As a mother, I always prioritise my children and put myself last. But there are times when I need to be ‘selfish’, in the sense that I must not neglect myself. I need to remember that I also exist and ensure that the money I work hard for benefits me too.”

Sosibo asked Chauke if she had any advice for women facing financial difficulties. Chauke said that she has always been independent and self-reliant when it comes to money. However, she acknowledged that everyone stumbles and sometimes needs assistance. “Being self-reliant doesn’t mean you have to struggle alone, and accepting help does not equate to failure. It’s nothing to be ashamed of.”

She added that financial resilience must be coupled with a strong belief in oneself. “We must have the audacity to believe that whatever we strive for, we need the mindset and the determination to make it happen.” This may involve seeking support from others to help navigate our journey.

Sithole agreed, emphasising the importance of introspection in the series. Women must believe that they deserve financial abundance. Sosibo added that understanding our relationship with money is crucial — is it healthy or problematic? Once we gain this awareness, we can take the necessary steps forward. Sithole concluded: “You need the audacity to believe in something. With that, you gain accountability, vision, and the motivation to do the work.”

Chauke concluded that self-awareness is the key to progress. As we develop this awareness, we can identify areas that require improvement in our financial affairs.

Tune in to more episodes of the #UnlockWomen Podcasts and join influential women as they candidly discuss their fears, challenges, and inspirational experiences related to money.