Fresh from the New York Fashion Week, Laduma Ngxokolo is returning home to assist emerging designers from the province at the first Eastern Cape Fashion and Design Council (EDFDC) in Port Elizabeth on Friday.
Ngxokolo, designer of the MaXhosa brand, showed a collection titled “We Are Kings and Queens” for his New York Fashion Week debut.
The ECFDC is a non-profit organization founded in 2018 by Ngxokolo and Nwabisa Bunde.
Bunde said the organisation aims to help SMMEs within the fashion, design and craft industry through various business development initiatives and advisory support.
“The connection between people and art is deeper. Just like language is a natural behaviour of expressing oneself, so is art.
“Art is a universal form of communication through which many can share their ideas and thoughts with other people. Hence introducing the Creative Arts mentorship programme,” Bunde said.
“We want the Eastern Cape to become a mass contributor to the South African economy.
“Panel discussions about funding opportunities, youth empowerment as well as branding and marketing strategies will form a vital part of the programme on the day.”
The Mandela Bay Development Agency (MBDA) spokesperson Luvuyo Bangazi said the agency will host and sponsor the event at the Tramways building.
“Positive change as well as developing and promoting a creative culture in Nelson Mandela Bay forms an important part of the MBDA’s strategic values.
“High rates of unemployment, poverty and inequality threaten economic growth and social cohesion. Promoting the development of mentorship programmes such as the ECFDC is one solution to the current employment crisis,” Bangazi said.