INSPIRATIONAL women who have made an impact in Portsmouth have the chance to be recognised at an inaugural awards ceremony which aims to celebrate females.
No matter how old they are or which industry they work or volunteer in, women and young girls can be nominated for the differences they have made to the lives of others, in the Pamodzi Inspirational Women of Portsmouth Awards.
Roni Edwards, the director of Pamodzi Creatives, the company behind the event, has selected five powerful women from the city who will shortlist and announce the winners at a ceremony in March.
Roni, 42, said: ‘I’ve created lots of short films and podcasts based on strong, inspirational women from the city and I just thought, if I know so many, there must be so many more out there who need to be recognised.
‘I want to live in a place where we celebrate things more given our wider current climate.
‘We’re excited about how accessible this is, there are different categories like business, community or education, but nominees don’t have to fit into a specific one.
‘We welcome nominees from a broad range of industries and with different stories to tell.
‘This is our first one so it’s a bit of an experiment but as it grows and we get support from other businesses, I hope it will get bigger and bigger.’
The awards, at the Royal Maritime Club from 7pm to 11pm on March 7, coincide with International Women’s Day on March 8.
Roni's trailblazers include Clare Martin, chief executive of Pompey in the Community and Carly-Ann Purcell, founder of female empowerment dance movement Neptune Girls.
The trailblazers will put the nominees into groups and those shortlisted will be contacted before the ceremony.
Another trailblazer is Rowshonara Reza of Southsea, a community development officer with Portsmouth City Council.
The 45-year-old said: ‘Roni asked me to do this because for the last three years I’ve been doing International Women’s Day celebrations in the community with black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) women and other local women, to build up integration and raise awareness about the work women in Portsmouth do.
‘I’m very excited about this whole programme, I’ve seen first-hand that there are lots of inspirational women in the city who really make a difference. I can’t wait to select winners.’
The awards have been partly funded by Portsmouth City Council’s Portsmouth Lottery. Shaping Portsmouth is helping to organise the ceremony.
Pamodzi Creatives is about creative collaboration and holds events with a social theme.
Roni is from Zambia and said Pamodzi means together in her mother tongue.
Tickets are £15 and can be purchased through Eventbrite by searching the name of the event.