ZimAchievers Awards Australia 2019 Dates And Venue Announced

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Zimbabwe Achievers Awards International has opened the nominations and revealed the dates and venue for the 3rd edition of ZAA Australia, slated for Saturday 23rd November 2019 in Sydney.

The annual awards ceremony are in their third year running Down Under and will be held in a typically glitzy event that is expected to bring together various Zimbabwean diaspora achievers and guests to the 5-star Intercontinental Hotel Sydney. ZAA Australia Country Director Method Mukundu confirmed the developments and promised another stellar event.

“For us at ZAA Australia, this year marks our third annual Awards Gala Dinner which is a very meaningful milestone to us. The first event was an inaugural one and the second was an affirmation of our relevance, whilst this year’s event will be about growth and endearment,” he said.

“Our purpose remains the same- to showcase and highlight milestones and achievements by Zimbabweans living in the Australasian region. We aim to continue recognising the people who do all the hard work behind the scenes and these awards are just a clap at them.”

The ZimAchievers Awards recognise and celebrate Zimbabweans who are setting the pace and raising the country’s flag high in the diaspora in various fields such as business, academics, sport, entertainment, media among others, with past winners of the Australian edition including the likes of Tanya Hodza, Evans Mukonza, Ivy Ziyambe and Phillimon Zongo among others.

Nomination lines have opened for this year’s categories here and will run for 6 weeks before shortlisting and voting starts. Mukundu urged all the Zimbabwean diaspora community and friends to come for the awards ceremony.

“Gather your friends and get a table of 10 together, and enjoy a memorable dining experience with and entertainment whilst networking with high achieving Zimbabweans and various other guests.”

Meanwhile, early bird tickets for the event can be purchased on Eventbrite.

The Zimbabwe Achievers Awards were founded by Conrad Mwanza in 2010 and continue to grow and now have a presence in five countries, with successful events in the UK, South Africa and Canada having been held earlier this year with the USA edition expected to round off the ZAA international run after ZAA Australia.

The much anticipated ZAA 10th Anniversary celebrations will be held on the 12th April 2020 in Zimbabwe at the Victoria Falls as part of the ZimThrive Homecoming initiative.

jonathankanjangaZimAchievers Awards Australia 2019 Dates And Venue Announced
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Another 1st for ZAA as Zimachievers Australia Successfully held

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Zimbabwe Achievers Awards (ZAA) Australia got off to a remarkable start , as
Zimbabweans from different parts of Australia converged to the South Australian City of
Adelaide. The Inaugural Zimbabwe Achievers Awards was held on Saturday 28 th
October 2017 at the prestigious Hilton Hotel.

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Before the proceedings began Honorable Walter Muzembi who is the new Zimbabwean
Minister of Foreign Affairs gave a brief speech via an audio-visual recording. He said
that he was ‘pained’ for not being able to attend the first edition in Australia but asked to
be pardoned as he has been recently appointed to a new role. The Minister wished the
best to the nominees and congratulated those who would walk away with awards on the
He acknowledged Honorable Zoe Bettison, Australian Minister of Communities and
Social Inclusion and Senator Gichuhi, Australia’s first black African Senator, Mr Conrad
Mwanza, the ZAA Chairman and the sponsors ‘for having the faith in the concept of
celebrating our Zimbabweanness and excellence in various areas of our pursuit’.
Honorable Muzembi emphasized that under his new portfolio, the Diaspora Investment
and Remittances Facilitation programme would be a major pillar of his foreign policy
thrust. Very soon the Zimbabwean Diaspora would be hearing on how their home
country’s government would work together with them.
One of the night’s major corporate sponsors WorldRemit also revealed that it would be
working on easing the cash crisis in Zimbabwe. “As family and friends back in
Zimbabwe are facing the challenge of how to get cash in the current cash crisis,
WorldRemit is looking at new solutions to helping customers and will be guaranteeing
cash for collection in Zimbabwe coming very soon,” said a statement.
The statement further stated, “Over the coming months WorldRemit will be working with
the ZAAs to highlight these success stories of the diaspora and those back home and to
help in working together to inspire others and show them what is possible.”
WorldRemit also expressed their pride in associating with the positive and inspiring
work the Zimbabwe Achiever Awards is doing in connecting Zimbabweans across the

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Mr Conrad Mwanza further highlighted the significance of the Zimbabwean Diaspora.“The Zimbabwean Diaspora is an important constituency that the Zimbabwean
government cannot afford to ignore and they need to engage more to be able to unlock
its (vast) potential. Through ZAA we have been able to see a lot of successful

Zimbabweans who are patriotic and they want to contribute, however, it is a case of
finding ways to engage them,” he said
Trevor Manyame, ZAA International Executive added ‘’Congratulations To All The
Winners & Nominees of The Zimbabwe Achievers Awards Australia Edition! Many
Thanks To All Our Major Sponsors Steward Bank WorldRemit Pacific One
Drop SAMMY Bennett Foundation, Distinguished Guests Hon Senator Lucy Gichuhi,
Minister for Multicultural Affairs Hon. Hon Zoe Bettison MP, Dr. Joseph Masika Doc
Sammy Sika, ZAA Australia Local Partners Zimpride Australia & Many More, As Well As
ZAA Australia Team, Mr Mutusva, Method Mukundu, Jaison Midzi & Many More. Words
Cannot Express Our Gratitude! Let Us All Unite, Work Together & Make It Even Bigger
Next Year!’’

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Meanwhile the ZAA US Edition will be held on Saturday 11 th November at the Marriot
Quorum, for more info and tickets visit
The 2017 ZAA Australia winners are
1. Business of the Year:
Omasters Accountants
2. Female Entrepreneur of the Year
Ruby Lyn
3. Male Entrepreneur of the Year
Guardian Mashangwe
4. Professional of the Year
Dr Gerald Chitsunge & Dr Pethidia Mango
5. Community Organization of the Year
Single Mother Foundation

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6. Academic Excellence
Cephas Chiduku
7. Community Champion of the Year Female
Thembelihle Moyo Ncube

8. Community Champion of the Year Male
Japhet Ncube
9. Cultural Ambassador
Felix Machiridza
10. Event of the Year
Cancer Girls’ Night In
11. Musician/Artist of the Year
Tkay Maidza
12. Personality of the Year
Obey Chingoriyo (Terry Obza)

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13. People’s Choice
Lucky Ngoshi
14. Sports Person of the Year
Amanda Chigeza
15. Music Video of the Year
Tkay Maidza
16. Media Personality of the Year
Joseph Muvengi (Papa Joze)
17. Trend Fashion & Design Award
Emily Jokwiro – (Klassic Designs By Emily) Melbourne
18. Young Achievers Award
Takudzwa Nyamvura
19. Friend of Zimbabwe Award
Senator Lucy Guchui20. Life Time Outstanding Contribution Awards
Audius M'tawarira

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21. Chairman’s Honorary Award
Ruth Pasi Magodo

carloskhumaloAnother 1st for ZAA as Zimachievers Australia Successfully held
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Trevor Manyame – ZAA Committee Member

Zimbabweans living in Australia are being encouraged to be part of this historic night of glitz and glamor, at the prestigious Hilton Adelaide Hotel on Saturday 28 October 2017.

Attendance has been confirmed from high profile business people, Australian government officials.

Guests will be treated to a 3 course dinner, an assortment of beverages and mesmerising entertainment.

Zimbabwe Achievers Awards (ZAA) is a distinctly special awards ceremony seeking to recognise Zimbabweans who have pushed the limits against all odds to raise the flag high and do both themselves and their fellow countrymen proud abroad.
The event has become one of the most important in the African Diaspora community, from the United Kingdom, United States of America, South Africa and now Australia.

ZAA founder and businessman Mr Conrad Mwanza said: ‘’The community spirit that has been built and the calibre of individuals and organisations that we have recognised over the years in different countries really shows how talented, determined and studious Zimbabweans are in building something we can all be proud of.”

ZAA International Executive, Mr Trevor Manyame said, “Our main agenda for the inaugural ZAA Australia edition is not just to celebrate a very broad spectrum of talent, art, business, expression and achievement in the Zimbabwean community, but to unite them to share ideas and encourage participation in rebuilding our beloved home country.

“We greatly appreciate all our sponsors, especially Steward Bank and WorldRemit for supporting this distinct ceremony. Without their support this could have not been any better.”

Dr Lance Mambondiani, Steward Bank CEO, said Zimbabwe Achievers Awards was a noble cause, applauded the organisers for the initiative while urging the community to rally behind the event. He added: ‘’Any nation that does not honour its heroes will not endure. Our association with the Zimbabwe Achievers Awards is our token of support to the rewards of core values of hard work, resilience, dedication and triumph over adversity; values without which no nation can endure.”

Also in support of the edition was WorldRemit CMO, Mr Alex O’Shaughnessy who said: “We’re proud to be associated with the positive and inspiring work the ZAA is doing in connecting Zimbabweans across the globe.

“By bringing international remittances online, WorldRemit is making the process quicker, easier and more secure –helping people to focus on making the most of their opportunities, wherever they are. Like us, the ZAA believe that the mix of experiences and perspectives the Diaspora possess offers them unique opportunities to build a better future for themselves and for people around the world. We’re therefore very proud to lend our support to ZAA’s vision.”

As the count down to this memorable ceremony continues, the organisers’ greatest wish is to extent an invitation to everyone who is willing to partner in the development of “our country’s socio-economic policies”. To this effect the ceremony will communicate directly the messages of investment opportunities, prospective and lucrative working environment as well as peace loving Zimbabweans.

“ZAA is a great leap in the right direction in uniting the Zimbabwean Diaspora community not just in Australia but globally. It’s high time we take advantage of opportunities of this nature to promote economic solution based dialogue, sharing business ideas and opportunities, as well as inspiring positive action among young Zimbabweans in particular and African citizens in general in order to rebuild our nations.” said Mr Trevor Manyame.

The Diaspora community is uniting for the purpose of nation building towards a better dispensation, and views itself as an automatic and vibrant arm to the Zimbabwean government’s efforts for sustainable development through an economic blueprint.

“It is at this juncture that we sought and found it meaningful to engage the patriotic and progressive Zimbabweans in particular and Africans in general to cross pollinate along nation and continental development. The fundamental being dialogue and proposal of action plans which will be implemented thereafter. It is of great concern that government economic blueprint clusters must be fulfilled and supported with extensive contribution of the Diaspora community as well,” added Mr Trevor Manyame.

ZAA Australia’s organization comprise of a local committee led by Mr David Shepherd Mutusva alongside Mr Trevor Manyame, Mr Method Mukundu and Mr Jaison Midzi.

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WorldRemit partners with Zimbabwe Achievers Awards US and Australia for 2017 editions

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Alex O’Shaughnessy, CMO – Worldremit

Global money transfer service WorldRemit has partnered with the Australian and US chapters of the Zimbabwe Achievers Awards (ZAA) for the 2017 award ceremonies to be held in October and November, respectively.

Now in its seventh year, the ZAA has grown to become the biggest platform celebrating the achievements of people of Zimbabwean heritage from across various fields of endeavour. Starting off in London, the awards have spread to other major cities across the globe with significant populations of Zimbabweans, starting with Johannesburg in 2014.

Australia has become the fourth country to host the ZAA after the UK, South Africa and the US. Preparations are at an advanced stage for its inaugural awards gala dinner at the Hilton Hotel in Adelaide on Saturday 28 October. ‘’The stage is set, the red carpet is ready, and tickets are selling out fast, I urge those who intend to attend to secure their tickets as places are limited; said Method Mukundu,, ZAA Australia Committee member.

The US awards, now in their second year, will be held on 11 November at the Marriot Quorum Hotel in Dallas. “We are looking forward to hosting another fantastic ZAA and as usual, we expect the event to sell out. I would urge people to secure their places early to avoid disappoint’’ added Vez Nkomo, ZAA US organising Chair.

Unlike traditional money transfer companies, WorldRemit is a purely digital service that allows individuals to send money to friends and family living abroad, using a computer, smartphone or tablet. The money can be received as a bank deposit, cash pick-up, Mobile Money, or mobile airtime top-up. Seeing the opportunity presented by the new mobile money technology emerging on the Continent, Founder and CEO, Ismail Ahmed, was able to help the diaspora to put money directly into the hands of recipients wherever they are and whenever they need it.

ZAA Chairman Conrad Mwanza welcomed the new partnership with WorldRemit, saying it signalled the company’s commitment to empowering the communities it worked with.

“We are delighted to be working with WorldRemit in fostering greater engagement with the Zimbabwean community around the world. Both ZAA and WorldRemit started in the diaspora and share a commitment to connect national and diaspora communities in beneficial and innovative ways. As we celebrate the achievements of our countrymen and women, we are raising awareness of our collective strength and demonstrating the huge possibilities that are within our reach as Zimbabweans,” Mwanza said.

WorldRemit CMO, Alex O’Shaughnessy said: “We’re proud to be associated with the positive and inspiring work the ZAA is doing in connecting Zimbabweans across the globe. By bringing international remittances online, WorldRemit is making the process quicker, easier and more secure –helping people to focus on making the most of their opportunities, wherever they are.


Like us, the ZAA believe that the mix of experiences and perspectives the diaspora possess offers them unique opportunities to build a better future for themselves and for people around the world. We’re therefore very proud to lend our support to ZAA’s vision.”

Tickets for the Australian and US editions are now on sale on

leslyicdigitalWorldRemit partners with Zimbabwe Achievers Awards US and Australia for 2017 editions
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Inaugural ZAA Australia nominees are announced

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NOMINEES for the Inaugural Zimbabwe Achievers Australia Edition have been announced and the gala dinner where the winners will be honoured scheduled for Saturday 28th October 2017. Like the other editions in UK, South Africa and USA, the Australian edition has produced and unearthed extraordinary Zimbabweans excelling in Australia. Organisers of the high profile event announced over 80 nominees across a 20-category list at a press conference held on Facebook live.

ZAA Australia Secretary Jaison Midzi said “we have been inundated with some outstanding nominations for the inaugural event, and it highlighted the exceptional work that Zimbabweans are doing, not only in Australia but aboard.” He praised the team for doing a remarkable job whittling down the shortlist. The team comprised of individuals with experience and knowledge in various sectors from business to community engagement and entertainment, including Method Mukundu and Trevor Manyame led by David Shepherd Mutusva and the local committee.

ZAA Founder Conrad Mwanza said ‘’the community spirit that has been built and the calibre of individuals and organisations that we have recognised over the years in different countries really shows how talented, determined and studious Zimbabweans are in building something we can all be proud of.’’ Dr Lance Mambondiani, Steward Bank CEO, one of the sponsors of ZAA Australia added ‘’any nation that does not honour its heroes will not endure.“ Our association with the Zimbabwe Achievers is our token of support to the rewards of core values of hard work, resilience, dedication and triumph over adversity; values without which no nation can endure.” He said ZAA was a noble cause and applauded the organisers for the initiative edged the community to rally behind the cause.

Voting will commence on Tuesday 12th September and will run until the 10th of October 2017. Thereafter, votes will be verified by ZAAs Panel of professionals who will arduously assess shortlisted candidates and match up their achievements with the set criteria before emerging with this year’s list of winners.

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The ZAA Australia awards ceremony will be held on Saturday 28th October 2017 at the prestigious Hilton hotel, Adelaide, overlooking Victoria Square. Hilton Adelaide is set in the heart of the city’s entertainment, shopping and dining precincts, the Central Market, Chinatown and Gouger Street. Early bird tickets start from AUD110 until 30th September then go up to AUD150 from the 1st of October. To buy tickets and vote, please visit

The ZAA annual gala dinner has become the red carpet event and the most popular date on the Zimbabwean community’s calendar. It remains the pinnacle of celebration for the accomplishments of Zimbabweans who are settled in the diaspora. meanwhile Nominations are open for the South Africa and US Editions, please visit to nominate.

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The 2017 ZAA Australia Finalists are………

Business of the year

1.   Zishopu Worldwide

2.   Best Clinical Practice Australia

3.   Omasters Accountants

4.   Greenstar Commercial and Property

5.   Urimbo Group

Female entrepreneur of the year

1.   Taku Mbudzi

2.   Gracious Chidhakwa Makumbe

3.   Ruby Lynn

4.   Christine Mudavanhu Makumbe

5.   Raviro Nzenza

Male  Entrepreneur of the Year

1. Nkosana Mafico

2. Prosper Taruvinga

3. Guardian Mushangwe

4. Noel Padzinza and Nigel Buraundi

5. Tsungai Mukushi

Professional of the Year

1.   Simba Marekera

2.   Dr Gerald Chitsunge & Dr Pethidia Mango

3.   Grace Chakabva

4.   Phillimon Zongo

5.   Shingirai Nhatarikwa

Community Organization of the Year

1.   CYALA

2.   Tinoda Trust

3.   Face of Africa Australia


5.   Zim Community In Australia Victoria

Academic Excellence

1.   Dr Edison Ziso

2.   Dr Shepherd Masocha

3.   Dr Stella Gwini

4.   Cephas Chiduku

5.   Prof. Finex Ndlovu

Community Champion of the year Female

1.  Thembie Ndlovu

2.  Ruth Pasi Magodo

3.  Thembelihle Moyo Ncube

4.  Thembe Moyo

5.  Shelter Makonese

Community Champion of the year Male

1.  John Tapfuma

2.  Bankie Murongah

3.  Bernard Muchemwa

4.  Terry MacDermot

5.  Japhet Ncube

Cultural Ambassador

1. Munyaradzi Maidza

2. Tobias Mahohoma

3. Felix Machiridza

4. Simba Mushete

5. Chris Gudu

Event of  the Year

1.   Cancer Girls’ Night In

2.   Freeka Runway

3.   Australia Diaspora Business Engagement Forum

4.   Spirit of Africa Townsville

5.   Africa’s Got Talent

Musician /Artist of the Year

1.   Tkay Maidza

2.   Nyarai Takaidza

3.   Larry Slicker

4.   Desire Sibanda (Dizzy Dee)

5.   Ruvarashe Ngwenya

Personality of the Year

1.   Judith Mari

2.   Frazer Mutumwa

3.   Obey Chingorivo (Terry Obza)

4.   Sister Zai Zanda (Poet)

5.   Olivia Kanosvamira

People’s Choice

1.   Michelle Kudakwashe Majuru

2.   Lucky Ngoshi

3.   Mukoma Masimba

4.   Kuda Chamisa

5.   DJ Dante (Clemency Mdaya)

Sports person of the Year

1.   David Pocock (Former Captain Australian Rugby U20s

2.   Janine Murray (Commonwealth Games Gold Medalist)

3.   Tando Velaphi (Soccer) professional league.

4.   Hilton William Raymond Cartwright (Cricket)

5.   Amanda Chigeza

Music Video of the Year

1.   Tinonakirwa – Bodyguard

2.   Larry Slicker- Special Kid

3. Francois – Growing pains

4.   Tkay Maidza – Do it right

5. Kudzai – Ehheh


1.   Richard James Cosnet -Actor: The Vampires Diary, The Flash; Quantico

2.   Ronald Nhokwara (Dj Ron Ron) (Vic263TV & Vic263 Radio)

3.   Enock Buranda ( Vic 263TV & Vic263 Radio)

4.   Collen Muduwa (Big Time Media)

5.   Papa Joze


1.   Emily Jokwiro – (Klassic Designs By Emily) Melbourne

2.   Charity Rumbidzai Chola – (Glam & Elegant Couture) Perth

3.   Molinda Danda – Danda Couture

4.   Itai Nyakudya

5.   Liz Bokani Pasipanodya

Young Achievers Award

1.   Kevin Kapeke

2.   Gracious Tapfuma

3.   Takudzwa Nyamvura

4.   Thubalethu Ndibali

5.   Tinaye Zenenga

Friend of Zimbabwe Award

1.  Mark Bartler – Member for Port Adelaide

2.   Senator Lucy Guchui

3.   Dorcas Utkovic (Oz African TV)

4.   Angela Evans – Mayor of City of Charles Sturt

5.   Alison Wall

Lifetime Outstanding Contribution 

1.   Rob Adams (Architect)

2.   Dr Sekai Nzenza – Shand

3.   Henry Olonga

4.   Audius M’tawarira

5.   Alfonso Zvenyika Lambarda (Boxer)

carloskhumaloInaugural ZAA Australia nominees are announced
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Zim Achievers to host first ever winners and nominees reception

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Winners and finalists at this year’s Zimbabwe Achievers Awards (ZAA) will get a chance to toast to their success and recognition at a dinner to be held in their honour on 24 July 2015 at the popular Mama Jumbe’s restaurant in East London.

In a first post-awards event of its kind, the ZAA will once again roll out the red carpet for all those who won or were nominated for awards at the 2015 ZAA gala dinner, which was held in Kensington, London, on the 9th of May.

ZAA Executive Director Brian Nyabunze said the event will give award winners and nominees a special opportunity to celebrate their recognition and also network and share notes about their endeavours.

“It’s only right to honour and continue to recognise all those individuals who are raising the Zim flag high on a daily basis, and working hard to champion various initiatives and businesses here in the UK and abroad,” Nyabunze said.

“As ZAA, we’re honoured to provide platforms of encouragement and recognition for such focused, hardworking, determined and inspiring individuals and organisations. We see this as our humble contribution to the success of our country and compatriots,” he added.

Terrence Jumbe, proprietor of Mama Jumbe’s, said: “We are honoured to host the first ever Zimbabwe Achievers Awards winners and nominees’ dinner because we view the ZAA as a premier franchise in the Zimbabwean diaspora. The ZAA coming to Mama Jumbe’s is symbolic to me as the owner because although my outlook is Pan-African, I am proudly Zimbabwean and I see this event as a stamp of support and approval by my own brothers and sisters.

“I invite all Zimbabweans in the UK to come and celebrate the outstanding achievements of those who have been recognised for flying our flag high.”

The dinner is by invitation only and free of charge for this year’s winners and nominees, but the after-party that will be hosted in the nightclub section of Mama Jumbe’s afterwards is open to all.

After five years in the business, the ZAA is now widely recognised as the leading excellence awards platform in the UK and South Africa and will soon be launching in Zimbabwe itself before the end of this year. A total of 19 awards and more than a dozen special honours were handed out at this year’s ceremony. Up to 85 people and organisations made the final shortlist and have all been invited for the special dinner.

Mama Jumbe’s has carved its niche as a Pan-African restaurant and bar operating a dine, drink and dance concept. Serving a legendary gourmet buffet of Africa’s favourite dishes, the venue also provides after-party late night entertainment in its intimate basement lounge. Mama Jumbe’s is situated at 350 Katherine Road E7 8NW in East London.

Mama Jumbe club

The intimate, cosy basement nightclub at Mama Jumbe’s


Mandla StoneZim Achievers to host first ever winners and nominees reception
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Zimbabwe Achievers Awards to honour church and community groups

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com11THE Zimbabwe Achievers Awards will this year give special recognition to UK-based church and community organisations that have made significant and consistent contributions to the Zimbabwean community.

ZAA Executive Director Brian Nyabunze said the popular awards event, now in its fifth year, will run under the theme “Stronger Community, Secure Future”.

“Every community needs its institutions as support pillars in order to stand firm over time and secure the interests of its members,” Nyabunze explained.

“The Zimbabwean community in the UK is relatively young when compared to older diaspora communities from the Afro-Caribbean and West Africa, for instance. But we’ve grown in leaps and bounds through sometimes very trying experiences.

“And along that journey, our churches and community organisations have provided us with a reliable and accessible support system where none would have been available to us. For that, we at ZAA would like to take our hats off to them.”

Zimbabweans began to migrate to the UK in droves in the late 1990s courtesy of a visa free arrangement that existed at the time between the two countries.

The numbers surged until 2002 when a visa was introduced. Most of the new immigrants faced challenges of regularising their stay for the longer term as well as accessing employment that was equivalent to their training and experience.

Churches and community groups have played a vital role in providing pastoral care, advice and psychosocial support to members of the community.

Dealing with new ways of working, alienation from family and a familiar culture, or being marginalised by the immigration system often took such a heavy toll on the physical and mental wellbeing of those going through such experiences.

After 2005, and as people’s immigration and economic status became more secure, community organisations focused on issues of business, national development and philanthropy also began to gain prominence.

“Today we can now boast of having set up our own businesses, charities that support people locally and back home, and churches with branches across the UK that continue to play a supportive role,” Nyabunze added.

ZAA 2015 will be held on the 9th of May at the five-star Royal Garden Hotel in London’s affluent Kensington district. The awards event has become the premier platform for recognising and celebrating the achievements of people of Zimbabwean heritage.

In keeping with global awards shows where popular comedians are engaged as hosts, organisers have secured comedy king Carl Joshua Ncube’s services as the host for the evening’s proceedings.

Ncube, who has been described by CNN African Voices as the “New face of Zimbabwean Comedy”, broke onto the Zimbabwean comedy scene with his debut one-man show Carl Joshua Ncube’s Big Announcement.

He has performed around the world and will be embarking on his European tour following his appearance at ZAA.

Meanwhile, voting is still open for shortlisted nominees across all categories and closes on Thursday 30 April.

Limited tickets, going for £89.95 each, are being sold exclusively on until the 3rd of May. The online ticketing system also allows guests to choose their seats online.

Mandla StoneZimbabwe Achievers Awards to honour church and community groups
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Meet 2015 Female Entrepreneur nominee Nicola Holden

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Nicola Holden

Name: Nicola Holden
Category: Female Entrepreneur of the Year

Tell us a bit about yourself?

I was born and brought up in Harare and moved to the UK when I was 20. Initially I studied and then worked as an Engineer, but I slowly became aware that this career did not bring me happiness. I realised that I needed to do something more creative and so 8 years ago I switched careers, becoming an entrepreneur and starting my own London-based Interior Design business.

My Zimbabwean roots and love of international travel provide inspiration for my designs. Nicola Holden Designs creates beautiful homes for private clients, allowing their personal lives to reflect their success in business. Many of these projects have been featured in national magazines and my designs have even clad the walls of Zimbabwe House. Embassies!

Alongside this, I am a volunteer trustee for the charity Makomborero which supports gifted Zimbabwean students, giving them the chance to complete their A-level education which they otherwise would not have had. Makomborero provides the platform for these amazing students to excel, giving them hope for their futures. This is probably the most rewarding aspect of my career.

Drawing from my own life experiences, I am also co-author of The 20 Project, a book aimed at helping young people to make the transition from study to work. The book is a collection of wisdom and advice aimed at encouraging people to think about their place in the world. 100 per cent of the profits made by the project go to Makomborero.

How did you find out you had been nominated?

I got a great surprise when an email dropped into my inbox advising me that I had been nominated!

What was the feeling when you found out you had made the shortlist?

I felt very proudly Zimbabwean when I found out that I had been nominated, and very humbled that someone else had noticed the difference I am striving to make in this world.

What would it mean to win?

Winning this award would be a very proud moment for me. I feel it would put Zimbabwe on the map in the interior design world, and would help me in leveraging even more support for Makomborero.

What keeps you motivated?

The thread that runs through all of what I do is that I have been given a chance to make a difference to other people’s lives. I create homes that enrich my client’s lives; I work with talented artisans, keeping traditional crafts alive; and I support the amazing students of Makomborero who will, no doubt, one day make a significant difference in Zimbabwe. This is what keeps me motivated.

What projects are you currently working on?

I am currently working on projects for several private clients, as well as the design of a coffee shop. Alongside this I am writing an interior design book, as well as working on developing a small range of products that can be manufactured in Zimbabwe, but marketed in the first world. Additionally, Makomborero has just announced an exciting new project – a mobile science laboratory that can be moved between schools in Harare’s high density suburbs. This will make a significant difference to GCSE Science understanding in these schools, giving the students a much better chance in their exams.

Mandla StoneMeet 2015 Female Entrepreneur nominee Nicola Holden
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ZymPay Main Sponsor


The Zimbabwe Achievers Awards has unveiled ethical money transfer business ZymPay Ltd as the main sponsors for this year’s edition of the premier red carpet show, which is scheduled to take place on the 10th of May at the five-star Royal Garden Hotel in Kensington. They take over from MoneyGram, who had held the sponsorship position for the past three seasons.

ZymPay plans to open its first global route to Zimbabwe in the second quarter of this year. “Our service aims to deliver a safe and fair way to send money abroad,” says Dakshesh Patel, founder and CEO of ZymPay.

“We have adopted extremely high standards of compliance for ‘Know Your Client’ (KYC) and anti-money laundering (AML), going way beyond current guidelines and practices. It means that we – and the institutions we partner with here and in Zimbabwe – have the greatest confidence in our system.”

There has been much debate and concern from Regulators and Financial Institutions of Remittances. The level of compliance varies amongst money remittance companies and ZymPay sets a new standard to assure compliance to the highest standards that regulators seek to implement in future.

Taking this approach means each transaction is automatically cleared in real-time and in accordance with a high degree of assurance around KYC/AML at both the send and receive points of the transaction cycle.

The service is all electronic and seamless. “My vision is to reduce the friction associated with the process of money transfer at an economic cost,” says Patel. “We wanted to just let the money flow, but in a safe and entirely secure way.”

While the company is more than merely competitive with the major players, ZymPay have gone further to win customers with an easier process.

“Placing the customer first is at the heart of any good business,” says Nicholas Ricketts, ZymPay’s CMO. “We knew that the existing systems out there were time-consuming and laborious for people. So we removed the form-filling and waiting around at money transfer agents.”

The proof of the ethical side to the business comes in two parts. ZymPay plan to be completely transparent with their rates with low fees that will simply cover ID checks and processing. Then they will use a share of profits to build a foundation to deliver health and education projects in the recipient countries.

“I came to the UK during the troubles in the seventies and was lucky enough to gain a good education that started me off on a successful career path. I am grateful for the opportunities afforded me and now feel that it’s time to give something back,” says Patel.

“The Foundation model that I already run through my business has helped deliver projects in Sri Lanka and South Africa in conjunction with a leading UK School. I’ve seen at first hand just how effective carefully delivered education can be. We will build a meaningful foundation funded solely from our earnings from ZymPay so that customers know that when they send money home they are doing some good too.”

ZAA Chief Executive Officer, Peter Soko, said the new partnership with ZymPay was an exciting development as both organisations shared similar visions and goals. He expressed confidence that the new strategic partnership would allow the ZAA more opportunity to develop its youth mentorship programme as well as add more value to the awards for all the nominees and winners.

His counterpart, ZAA executive director Brian Nyabunze, welcomed the new sponsorship deal with Zympay and hailed it as a perfect meeting of minds since both organisations are inspired by the principle of giving back to, and empowering the community.

“We admire ZymPay’s ethical business model that places a high premium on sowing into the community in order to achieve sustainable development. As ZAA, we see a confluence of values and objectives with ZymPay in our high regard for the role of corporate social responsibility in driving social change,” he said.

Now in its fourth year, the ZAA has grown to become the flagship awards event for the Zimbabwean community in the UK. Having signalled its ambitions with an inaugural show at the swanky Mermaid Theatre in London’s Blackfriars district in 2011, the ZAA is now habitually resident at some of London’s most glamourous five-star hotels. This year’s event will take place at the Royal Garden Hotel, situated in the regal environs of Kensington Palace and Kensington Gardens.

Tickets are now on sale on, and this year organisers have put in place a world class ticketing system that allows customers to pick their table and seat before they make a purchase. Unlike in previous editions, this year’s awards show will be followed by an after-party at the same venue. Entertainment during the awards show and afterwards will be provided by an impressive cast of performers to be unveiled soon, organisers said.

leslyicdigitalZymPay Main Sponsor
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ZAA Final Nominees Announced

THE final nominees for this year’s Zimbabwe Achievers Awards (ZAA) have been announced and voting is now open to members of the public. Organisers of the annual red carpet event hailed the public’s enthusiastic participation in the nomination process as more than 550 public nominations were received for this year’s show.


“We’ve sorted all the names that have been put forward and people can now go onto our website to vote for the shortlisted nominees,” ZAA executive director Brian Nyabunze said.

“I am humbled by the level of public participation in identifying achievers for this year’s show. It only proves, once again, that these are the people’s awards,” he added.

Between now and the 30th of April, members of the public can go to the Zimachievers website and vote for their preferred candidates, and each person is restricted to two votes per category, Nyabunze explained.

Over 80 nominees will battle it out for top honours in nearly 20 categories spanning the fields of business, sport and culture, music and entertainment, academia, and media, among others. An exclusive category has been reserved especially for 10 outstanding young people in keeping with the ZAA’s theme this year to recognise and celebrate the achievements of the youth.

“The future of any community, of any nation, is reflected in the state of its young people. We recognise our youth as the cornerstone of our community’s future and we have decided to especially honour their achievements this year as a way of encouraging their contribution. Most importantly, we hope to promote them as positive role models to their peers,” Nyabunze said.

The ZAA, now in their fourth year, will be held on the 10th of May at the luxurious five-star Royal Garden Hotel in London’s affluent Kensington district. With spectacular views of Kensington Palace, which was the late Princess Diana’s official residence, and the magnificent Kensington Gardens, the hotel provides a fitting aura of splendour to what is set to be a night of memorable celebration.

To avoid the inconveniences created by the overbooking of guests at last year’s awards show, ZAA has introduced a world class ticketing system that allows prospective guests to choose their seats upon purchasing their tickets. All tickets are being sold exclusively on the Zimachievers website.

leslyicdigitalZAA Final Nominees Announced
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The venue confirmed

Royal Garden Hotel in leafy Kensington. One of the best value 5-star hotels London has to offer. Whether you need a prestigious London meeting venue or a luxury escape, at the Royal Garden Hotel you’ll find 5-star service without the stuffiness.

Sleep soundly in our stylish rooms with stunning views over Hyde Park and London’s skyline, dine in our award-winning London restaurants overlooking Kensington Palace and Gardens or rejuvenate with a spa treatment in our hotel Health Club.

With excellent transport links, London attractions close by, the bustling West End just 10 minutes away and the shopping districts of Kensington, Mayfair and Knightsbridge a short distance away, the Royal Garden Hotel is perfectly positioned to experience the London way of life.

Contact Details

Royal Garden Hotel
2-24 Kensington High St, Kensington, London, W8 4PT
Tel: +44 (0)20 7937 8000, Fax: +44 (0)20 7361 1991

leslyicdigitalThe venue confirmed
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