Thirty-year-old programme officer at the University of Cape Town’s Jakes Gerwel Fellowship, Carla Watson is passionate about making an impact in education, through classroom teaching, leadership and educational entrepreneurship. She coaches the candidate fellows in their first and second years, providing practical support for the transition from high school to university through one-on-one coaching during their academic journey.
Watson is responsible for heading up the strategic communications department to reach out to matriculants across the country who are passionate about transforming education in South Africa. She is a strong believer in the idea that the country’s incoming cohort of teachers must be supported as they are the ones who will be at the forefront of solving the most pressing issues in South Africa. For her, teaching provides the platform to engage with South Africa’s most pressing needs.
As a gay woman of colour, Watson founded foryouandyours, a company designed to reposition the inclusion of the LGBTIQA + community and to educate society about celebrating its various aspects. Foryouandyours focuses on using greeting cards which represent people of colour and members of the queer community who are seen as worthy of being celebrated and honoured during milestones in their lives.
Foryouandyours is aimed at increasing representation and providing the platform for celebration for a marginalised community. “I am so excited at how this venture is developing and being met with such resounding support,” she says.
“The vision of foryouandyours aims to provide a platform for South African artists, designers and illustrators selling their artwork which celebrates these milestones inclusively”.
Watson enjoys her time in the kitchen, which she generally spends making things as interesting sun-dried tomatoes and limoncello. Every couple of weeks you will also find her working on a canvas where she tries to bring forth her visions of an ideal South Africa on canvas. —Welcome Lishivha