Local heroes on red carpet

The Daily Dispatch, in partnership with Johnson & Johnson, honoured our Local Heroes of 2016 at a glitzy gala dinner at the East London ICC last night report See page 3 for
The Daily Dispatch, in partnership with Johnson & Johnson, honoured our Local Heroes of 2016 at a glitzy gala dinner at the East London ICC last night report See page 3 for
The Daily Dispatch in partnership with Johnson & Johnson rolled out the red carpet for 12 local heroes at a glitzy gala dinner at The East London International Convention Centre.

The lavish event, hosted by SABC3 Expresso presenter Ewan Strydom, is the second Local Heroes awards ceremony since the campaign was first launched last year.

More than 400 people – including local business people and politicians – came together to honour and praise those making a difference.

Eastern Cape premier Phumulo Masualle and roads and public works MEC Thandiswa Marawu were among the VIP guests.

The top 12 were selected by a panel of judges, which included Daily Dispatch editor-in-chief Sibusiso Ngalwa, marketing manager Ryan Megaw, J&J’s Michelle Williams, Frere Hospital CEO Roleen Wagner and 2015 Local Hero Akhona Matyobeni. Director of Sutterheim NGO Kusile Women Empowerment, Nomfuneko Salaza, said it was an honour to be among the top 12 local heroes.

“My husband and I have been treated like royalty at the centre, being pampered and all, it has been amazing! I feel extremely blessed to think that all our efforts have been recognised and are paying off in such an extra-special way.”

The top 12 local heroes and their partners were yesterday treated to a pampering session at Emerald Spa at the conference centre before a buffet lunch ahead of the glitzy ceremony.

King William’s Town’s Busisiwe Papiyana, who helps reunite homeless people with their families, was also excited about being among the top 12.

“It’s so exciting to be rubbing shoulders with wonderful people who are doing big things in their respective communities. Thanks to everyone who went all out to make us feel so special.” — mbalit@dispatch.co.za

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