Nomzamo Mbatha is an award-winning South African film and television actress, human rights activist, UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador, brand ambassador, businesswoman, and a glowing representative for Africa on the global stage. When we were searching for a cover model to represent both Africa Day and South Africa’s 25 years of democracy, Mbatha was an iconic choice: a strong, confident, talented and humanitarian face of Africa.
Nomzamo Mbatha has had an incredible year so far. In January 2019, she was appointed a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and has also won a host of international awards, including the Goddess Beauty Award at the International Women of Power Awards, the Rising Star Award from Face Africa and the Legislative Resolution Award from New York State Senator Kevin Parker. She was also recently honoured in South Africa with the Philanthropy Icon Award from E! Africa.
Speaking of her E! Africa Award, Mbatha says: ‘It always leaves me humbled and genuinely speechless when honoured or awarded for the humanitarian work that I do. To me, it’s a labour of love that allows me to shine a light and do good for those who are society’s most marginalised. Maybe it’s because I come from that world.
‘My role with the UN Refugee Agency, as well as my various philanthropic endeavours, has opened me up to a world bigger than myself where I have come to balance connecting with my displaced kin in a refugee camp, to engaging world economic leaders on funding and youth of South Africa on education, skills development as well as raising awareness on mental health issues. It’s rewarding in its own way and instils a change in your own life while calling others to do their part. I’m grateful. This feeling is beautiful.’
Mbatha was born and raised in KwaMashu township in KwaZulu-Natal. She holds a BCom (Accounting) from the University of Cape Town, which she managed to go back and complete, graduating at the end of 2017 despite a hectic work schedule. She was a finalist on the MTV VJ Search in 2012 and became a household name through her roles in soapies like Isibaya and Umlilo. She earned a nomination for ‘Best Actress in a Leading Role’ at the Africa Movie Academy Awards for her role in Tell Me Sweet Something (2015).
Prior to her appointment as a UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador, Mbatha had been working closely with UNHCR to raise awareness about the forcibly displaced in Africa. Mbatha has carried her millions of social media followers on every step of her journey as a human rights activist, and has helped amplify the voices of refugees by using her offline and digital platforms as a lens to raise awareness of refugee situations and issues across Africa.
To read more about Nomzamo Mbatha and her humanitarian efforts and awards, purchase the May 2019 issue of Creative Feel or, to continue supporting our role in the South African arts and culture sector, subscribe to our monthly magazine from only R180.00 per year. SUBSCRIBE HERE!