Empower 20 million Africans to sustainably provide for themselves by 2032.

Photo Essay

Women of Africa


“If the rhythm of the drum beat changes,
the dance step must adapt.”

African proverb

Greeting dance: A warm welcome in South Sudan

ForAfrika’s chief photographer, Sulette Theron reflects on her journeys around the continent and the women she has met along the way:

“Women in Africa dance and sing when they are happy, but also when they are sad, when they are grieving, when they are protesting and even when they are traumatised.

“Dancing is their preferred form of expression, and while it is unique, it is a universal language that needs no translation. You can feel their joy or their heartbreak through their actions.

“It strikes me as a symbol of their strength; that they are able to put aside their day-to-day worries and strife and find the immense energy for this type of vigorous expression.

“Watching them dance and sing reminds me of the lines from the famous South African resistance song: ‘Wathint' Abafazi, Wathint' Imbokodo’ which, in English, means ‘You strike the women, you strike the rock’.

The women of Africa are incredibly courageous and strong.”

To the beat: Women dance with jerry cans on the way to collect water

Story dance: Interpretive dance about the drought in Baia Farta, Angola

In gratitude: An Angolan woman expresses her thanks after her village received a borehole

Legacy of dance: Fun for the whole family

Pot luck: Any objects can be used as musical instruments