By Rachael Munda*

Pelagia Zigangwe Hungwe – an advisory committee member of the Zimbabwe Association and the Zimbabwe Action in Solidarity (ZAS) Leicester Drop-in Centre’s co-ordinator – received the Eva Organization for Women Certificate of Appreciation on March 8, 2012 as part of International Women’s Day celebrations. The award recognises and celebrates the contribution of outstanding, inspirational women who have made a positive impact within the local community.

Sadiyo Siad, the founder and CEO of the Eva Organisation for Women (EOW), presented the award on March 17, 2012. She said that by presenting the award to Pelagia Hungwe, the Eva Organisation for Women and the community of Leicester were recognising the dedication and commitment with which, for the past two years, Pelagia Hungwe has been helping run the ZAS Drop-in Centre.

“You have been an outstanding and inspirational woman for the community work that you had been involved in,” Sadiyo Siad said.

In her acceptance speech, Pelagia Hungwe talked about how humbled she was to be a recipient of the award and she spoke about the work and activities of the ZAS Leicester Drop-in Centre. She highlighted the services of the Zimbabwe Association and ZAS Leicester Drop-in Centre’s choir which, recently, was among the groups that provided entertainment when The Queen visited Leicester Cathedral on March 8.

Much to the delight of the audience that attended the EOW Awards Ceremony, the choir was on hand to give a beautiful and lively rendition of a traditional Zimbabwean congratulatory song.

The EOW Awards Ceremony and Arts Day was also an opportunity for women from diverse backgrounds and their families to celebrate, network and learn from the various workshops and activities that were being run on the day. These activities included an international fashion show, a photography display, a comedy sketch, and tasters from complimentary therapists.

I had the opportunity to interview both Pelagia Hungwe and Sadiyo Siad after the event. During that interview, Pelagia Hungwe spoke about what the award meant to her and her team and she talked very passionately about the ZAS Leicester Drop-in Centre and the challenges the group faces.

Sadiyo Siad talked about the Eva Organisation for Women and how it came about. She spoke about their vision to empower women in all aspects including in education as well as in supporting their physical and mental wellbeing.

The award ceremony was organised by EOW, in collaboration with students and staff at the University of Leicester, as part of events to commemorate International Women’s Day.

On the whole, the EOW Awards Ceremony and Arts Day was a resounding success.


  1. Rachael Munda is currently studying for a degree in Accounting (ACCA) with the Leicester Business Academy and is an avid blogger on social issues and on issues relating to human rights. 
  2. Photo credit: Stella Musiyiwa
  3. Video clips and more photos from the event will be available soon. 

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