Nyaradzo Mashayamombe is founding director of Tag A Life International Trust
(Ta-LI), a Girls and Young Women’s Rights, Gender and Empowerment Advocacy in
Zimbabwe.  Her work includes fighting for
the inclusion of African girls in leadership and positions of influence where
she works in various networks including World Movement for Democracy and
African Movement for Democracy. She is passionate about good governance,
accountability and has spoken strongly against Corruption and democracy in
Zimbabwe and in Africa, as well as the role of women in ending these
atrocities. She believes that the young people of Africa are the answer to
Africa’s current problems and they need to rise p to work on businesses, come
up with solutions and be able to negotiate and appreciate their worth in
entrepreneurship and talents so that they can finance and sponsor Africa
rising, therefore she has self is a great entrepreneur at heart. She is currently;
A Board member of the Community Solutions Alumni a Programme supported by US
State Department, A working group member of “Women in Leadership of
Organizations Supporting Women Living with &Affected by HIV” Zimbabwe, a
Reagan Fascell Fellow, former Board member WCoZ, Zimbabwe women’s
organizations’Coalition, former Coordinator for Girls Not Brides, former member
of the United Nations’ National Technical Working Group on Gender, Sexual &
Reproductive Health, and HIV/AIDS in Zimbabwe.  She is a former Coordinator of Girls not
Brides Zimbabwe.  She is a member of a
number of international programmes where she serves in various capacities. In
acknowledgment of her advocacy for the girls’ rights, Junior Chamber
International awarded her 2013&2014 as one of Ten Outstanding Young People
in Zimbabwe under “Contribution to Children, World Peace, and Human Rights”.
She has received other local and International Awards. She is a Development
Consultant, recording singer/songwriter and loves life.
Purpose: I’ve leant in my life that
purpose is the driving force for all successful people. In everything that one
succeeds in, one has to be clear about their purpose, why they do what they do
and what inspires them to believe in that which they love. Looking at my own
life, I can tress back to my childhood eve in Rural Zimbabwe that, I’ve always
walked in my purpose. I started advocating for other students when I was very
young, when it was risky to do it and when it was also scary, but I did it
anyways. I spoke against abuse for myself and others from teachers. I even
advocated for some traditional norms in my family as small as asking my mother
to allow us to use ‘China wear’ from her display which we always looked after
to be used for visitors. I grew up to realize up to realize that I had a
calling and a purpose to fight for justice and that was a God ordained. Without
knowing one’s purpose, one can be miserable in doing what they do not like
doing, and following other people’s purposes. By purpose I mean knowing what it
is you love doing, for others their purpose is to support other people’s
visions. What is more important is to figure out one’s purpose and walk in it
for there in is promotion, success and meaning. 
Excellence:  Excellency is a decision to do things to the
best of one’s ability, also guided by the acceptable professional principles
and beyond. A standard of Excellency makes one stand out over and above their
peers. I’ve embraced Excellency in my organization TaLI, from the way we handle
our programming, to the way we deal with our clients that’s girls, boys and
communities, are guided by usually the written government guidelines, but also
learning internationally what the best way to treat clients and stakeholders
are. In a country where everything is on the downturn economically and in every
way, it is easy to ignore the fundamentals such as meeting one’s commitments
even with dealing with staff members and others, but Excellency is a commitment
to doing the best, respectfully and morally even when things are tough. When
one does their work with the attitude and standard of Excellency, they stand
out and attract others to them including supporters. Excellency also is not a
destination arrived at at once; it takes years to invest in the best systems
and procedures as well as developing person. It means in scripting it into the
values and every system of the person and the organization. It also takes learning
from mistakes and other peoples advise, and it takes absolute realization that
you want to be the best, not settling for less and going for it. 
Faith: Without Faith I wouldn’t be
where I am today. It is by faith that I started as a girl to build and work on
the issues that I care about of girls. It is by faith that I get the courage to
continue even when things are tough. It is the faith that causes us to fight
for women’s rights, to get to work with others who believe in the same thing
and that we obtain support from those who believe in what we are doing. Without
faith I wouldn’t be able to apply for grants, and hope to get them to continue
my work. I would not believe in one day have a ‘Safe World for the Girl Child’ dream,
if it wasn’t for faith. When things get touch, it is the faith sometimes so
little, that give me the strength and the courage to keep moving. Sometimes
faith fails us, but the residue of what we believe in keeps us moving. It’s
important for me as an African woman leader to walk in faith and hope for the
revival and resuscitation of my dear and beloved continent!
God has
been the greatest influence on me through my mother Florence Mashayamombe, from
allowing my mother to look after and give an education to 8 children all by
herself at just the age of 36, to being a God loving person who herself
believes in big things, is a huge influence on me. She’s my heroine.
a)    My
mother, Florence Mashayamombe, for her fierceness, delegence, hardworking,
faith and courage. She is a woman of prayer and a great role model. After the
death of my father when she was only 36 left with 8 children, she made all of
us go to school against all odds and with challenges from her own father in-law
who wanted her to remarry.
b)    Strive
Masiiwa, he is a man who’s achieved so much as a black man. He is a
millionaire, and yet a man of faith. He encourages me such that I often think
of him when the going gets tough, and his testimonies are strong such that I
can think of him, and I can go to his facebook profile and realize that I can
conquer everything. It then makes me keep going.
c)    Betty
Makoni, is one of the women activists who helped ignite my passion in women and
girls. Her passion for women and girls as well as her brevity to stand for
women in Zimbabwe and make a household name for girls made me realize that I
could contribute also to the work of girls. It is her brevity that I admired
when I started my work.
goals for the next five years are that I take my organisation TaLI to the rest
of Zimbabwe, and increase my own impact on the African region as well as widen
contacts and reach in the globe. I also want to strengthen my business to make
the money to sustainably support my work. I do have accountability partners in
women content with both patriarchy and resources to make a change. Most of
resources are held by the males, and they are also given to men. I am
establishing my business to be able to contribute sustainably some of my
resources to fund my work. I am also fighting patriarchy through such an
organisation like TaLI.
I do
talk to God a lot through everyday prayers and prayer retreats. I also love
travelling, dancing and sometimes sipping away wine in great conversations with
my friends.
MY   –  
they do all the work that often men take credit for. They are the mobilisers in
political rallies; they are the ones who do the community projects work which
often male politicians come and claim and stamp their name on. The women are
the ones who feed the children and raise communities. Women make things happen
in companies, political parties and its often their grass roots organizations
that get the little funding but does the most work. They also often do unpaid
work and the most hard care work. They send their children to school, lead non
governmental organizations, fight patriarchy and are forced to put smiles on
their faces. Women are paid less than men, women fight systems that are
designed to work for men, and they go home to take care of their kids and
sometimes their husbands. Together with progressive men, women are shaping the
world with their witty ideas and labor. From Hillary Clinton, Michelle Obama,
Joyce Mujuru, Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, Gracia Machel etc, these women have been
in the forefront of battles to make our countries work, but they receive less
I would
seek to advance participation of girls and young women in leadership in every
aspect of life. I would increase the need for African governments to enforce
more accountability, governance and end corruption for their people. I would
work on making the African Union to be more impactful and accessible to young
women as currently it is difficult to have civic society and ordinary citizens
know how to engage with the AU. I would work around strategies to make the AU
have citizens/civic society structures of engagement and accountability in
their countries.
I would
like for them to know that the problems Africa faces today is patriarchy which
leaves out women and girls from positions of influence and power. Patriarchy
causes women to rise against women and causes them to be divided. The African
women need governments who fight an end to structural discrimination of women
and enforce equality to be crosscutting in both the private sector and the
public sector. Ensuring equality in every aspect means women can participate
freely and effectively in structures putting an end to corruption, looting and
bad governance. A critical component of this is education! Women and girls need
access to education to learn what really matters, about their communities,
economy and the responsibility the government has for its citizens, that way
they may begin to hold their governments accountable and begin to participate
in true democracy. African women and girls need to be present and participate
at every level, in the home, community and nation, not just be present at
places but contribute their own experiences and opinions in shaping services,
products and development of their communities. Above all, African women should
just learn to support each other and be there for each other, and to allow
themselves to make mistakes and rise up and be better again.

oragnisation Tag a Life International Trust(TaLI), together with Higher Life
and Women’s Coalition of Zimbabwe yesterdy held a Girl Child Education Indaba
to discuss the challenges girls go through to pursue education in Zimbabwe. We
will be happy to share with you a few pictures and the story that our staff
members are working on right now.