1996 - 2008

South African women have long been at the forefront of the struggle for political and social equality in our country. They have worked passionately over many years for the upliftment and increased prosperity of their families and communities. In recognition and celebration of this Shoprite Checkers decided in 1996 to introduce the Woman of the Year Award for South Africa.

The Award was the first major initiative for National Woman’s Day after Government decided to honour women every year on the anniversary of the biggest mass-gathering of women in South Africa on 9 August 1956. On this day 20 000 women marched in silence to protest the carrying of passes.

Since its inception the Award identified and paid tribute to the country’s unsung heroes, and presented them as role models to the rest of South Africa. The Award also brought into focus the many issues that women grapple with, issues that often make life a daily struggle.

The Award paid tribute to the most exceptional and achieving women in the country who had not only achieved success in their own respective fields but who had made a tangible difference in communities and society as a whole.

Over the past sixteen years the Award grew to enjoy national status as the pre-eminent award for women.The tremendous interest shown by South Africans in the Award, the growth in the number and quality of nominations, as well as the support by prominent South Africans for the objectives of the Award, attested to the growth in its stature.


In 2009, as South Africa entered a recession period, the Shoprite Group decided to put the Woman of the Year initiative on hold for a year in order to focus on launching a national feeding program assisting the poorest of the poor communities. The group aimed to alleviate the plight of those in less privileged sectors of society who were struggling even more so in the then tough economic climate - especially children and senior citizens, as well as the thousands of people affected by job losses.

During this time the Shoprite Group also took a fresh look at the Award in order to ensure the relevance in terms of the social needs and developments of the communities we serve. Accordingly the Woman of the Year officee engaged in intensive research to find out what is most important in the minds and close to the hearts of South Africans.

In 2010, in light of a progressively improving economy, the Shoprite Group decided to once again enforce its commitment to the women of our country by launching a new Award to celebrate South Africa’s most outstanding women. The new award, the Shoprite Checkers Women of the Year Award, rewards exceptional women who have achieved in their own fields and made an impact on the future of their fellow South Africans. It was decided to not only honour one woman, but five Women of the Year - one in each of five categories of social importance: Health Care-Givers,  Socio-economic Business Developers, Educators, Good Neighbours Against Crime and Youth Movers.

Furthermore the Award , through a Lifetime Achiever Award,  also celebrates an esteemed South African whom during her or his lifetime has inspired generations.

Through the Women of the Year Award we want to focus the attention of the people of our country on finding solutions for those critical matters affecting our future. The winners will be awarded with individual prize money but we will also give a substantial donation towards the work they do to ensure a better future for the people of South Africa.

[See the Hall of Fame for winners 1996-2011]



Finalists Announced!

Three finalists have been announced in each of the five categories of the 2012 Shoprite Checkers Women of the Year Award.

Judges Announced

The names of the judges who will select this year's Shoprite Checkers Women of the Year, have been announced.

Women of the Year success stories

As the 2012 Shoprite Checkers Women of the Year Award enters its judging phase, the winners of 2011 tell of how they are utilizing the prize money received from the Shoprite Group of Companies, to enhance their work and build a better future for the people of South Africa.

Women of the Year Office
Fax: +27 21 983 5222
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