HomeLifestyle & TravelHealth & BeautySPAR Women's Challenge ambassador Yolanda Bukani

SPAR Women’s Challenge ambassador Yolanda Bukani

Yolanda Bukani’s victorious battle against cancer is a testament to the invincible human spirit. Her remarkable journey inspires and uplifts all who cross her path.

When chatting with Yolanda Bukani, her unwavering resilience and determination remind us that we possess the strength to overcome challenges and become beacons of hope for others.

As an ambassador for the SPAR Women’s Challenge Jozi, she exemplifies the embodiment of a woman who has conquered obstacles and emerged as a symbol of courage and inspiration.

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Her journey

In 2007, she discovered a lump under her armpit and sought medical advice, but was misdiagnosed. In 2012, she fell seriously ill and underwent a biopsy, confirming her fears of lymphoma.

The diagnosis weighed heavily on her, especially as a young mother in a rural area with cultural misconceptions about cancer. However, her community, family, and church provided unwavering support.

The road to recovery was challenging, as she had to balance her studies, treatment, and caring for her child while dealing with weakened immunity. She endured numerous hardships, including travelling long distances for chemotherapy and a stem cell transplant.

Following her fight, she faced ongoing difficulties, but she chose to embrace gratitude and celebrate life. As a motivational speaker, she encourages others to appreciate the blessings and practice gratitude.

She draws inspiration from her son, loved ones, and the impact her story has on others.

Celebrating life

For Yolanda, the celebration of being cancer-free holds profound significance. The day she received the news that she was finally free from chemotherapy and no traces of cancer remained, she experienced an unparalleled moment of joy.

To commemorate this milestone, every year on September 2, she engages in something special, symbolising her rebirth and embracing a new lease on life. In the past, she bravely confronted her fears by bungee jumping, and this year, she plans to leap off the Soweto Towers.

Yolanda rejects living in fear, firmly believing that she has conquered the very thing that was meant to destroy her. She approaches life with an unyielding spirit, cherishing each day as if it were her last.

Never losing hope

Yolanda had an unwavering determination to be present and a strong mother figure for her son, Jody. Yolanda embraced the opportunity to use her story to inspire others and took up modelling to showcase the beauty and resilience of individuals who have lost their hair due to cancer treatment.

As a motivational speaker, she aims to educate and raise awareness about cancer, particularly among young people. Yolanda actively supported the Igazi Foundation and promoted the Marrow Masakhane campaign, encouraging black individuals to donate bone marrow.

In 2016, she founded the Yolanda Bukani Foundation, providing support to individuals and families affected by life-threatening illnesses such as cancer, TB, HIV/AIDS and blood disorders.

She visited schools and communities, sharing her journey and information about these illnesses while advocating the importance of a healthy lifestyle, balanced nutrition, and moderation.

Reflecting on her journey, she sees a young woman who fought relentlessly for her life and her message to the world is clear: “Embrace the temporary nature of life’s seasons, focus on the positive, know your purpose, and find happiness and confidence within yourself.”

With a mirror as her ally, she encourages others to affirm, “Girl, you’ve got this!”

The Smile Foundation

In May this year, the SPAR Women’s Challenge Jozi sponsored four essential procedures for children at the Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital in Johannesburg.

The children who received treatment were between 18 months and eight years old. In all likelihood, these procedures would not have been able to be done without the backing of the Smile Foundation, which assists children with facial abnormalities such as cleft lips and palates.

The Smile Foundation ensures that children needing these procedures receive the necessary medical attention, regardless of their financial situation.

The partnership between the SPAR Women’s Challenge Jozi and the Smile Foundation aligns with the theme message of #4Smiles, which aims to create more smiles by assisting those in need. By sponsoring these procedures, the organisation has helped to bring joy and hope to the lives of four children and their families.

The Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital is a world-class facility that provides medical care and treatment to children in South Africa. It was established in honour of the late Nelson Mandela, who was passionate about improving the lives of children in his country.

Overall, the SPAR Women’s Challenge Jozi has demonstrated its commitment to improving children’s lives in South Africa by partnering with the Smile Foundation and supporting the critical work done at the Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital. Through initiatives like #4Smiles, the organisation is helping to create positive change and make a meaningful impact in the lives of those in need.

Join in a Day of Smiles!

The SPAR Women’s Challenge Jozi 2023 is back and promises to be another spectacular event. Returning to Marks Park, this year’s challenge aims to capture the essence of the community and spread smiles all around. With the campaign theme of #4Smiles, the organisation have chosen a name that perfectly reflects the event’s spirit.

The newly named SPAR Women’s Challenge Jozi is set to be a day filled with excitement, camaraderie, and, of course, plenty of smiles. As part of the event’s charity initiative, the Smile Foundation will be supported, ensuring that the power of a smile can reach even more children in need.

Get ready to lace up your running shoes, gather your friends and family, and embark on a journey that will leave you with a smile and memories to cherish.

Participants can register online or at selected stores. To stay updated and find important information about the event, keep an eye on the official website.

There, you’ll find all the latest updates, news, and details you need to make your participation a memorable one.

All the info you need to know:

The entry price is R150, which includes a t-shirt, My Jozie Challenge Magazine, a foam peak cap, a medal and a goodie bag at the finish.

The race, at Marks Park in Emmerentia, Joburg, is on October 1, and starts at 8am.

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