Gaborone Botswana, what a modern city (numerous new buildings) – up and coming indeed and up and coming along with it is the FIRST natural hair studio – AFROBELLA NATURAL HAIR STUDIO
Meet Shirley Golekanye pictured above, the studio owner and visionary female power house. She rocks her own fro and has her own hair story and like many of us, she was tired of not having her hair treated with all the love and care it needed. So, she decided enough was enough, it was time to create a safe yet creative space where all the fros in Botswana could be loved and nutured – ‘A Natural Healing Space for Your Hair’. The months leading up to the studio opening were long, cumbersome and full of their own challenges but the vision never changed – it was going to happen and it has happened – the studio is now open and fully operational. To raise hair-awareness and also give the ladies (and men) an experience to remember and a taste of what is to come, Shirley together with her Afrobella team arranged a workshop on the 13th of August and I was invited to attend – the honor I felt was unreal.
The flight to Gaborone was ever so short, one minute you are receiving free Biltong and drinks and the next minute, you are decending to disembark off the flight. I was met with warmth and laughter and genuine kindness by my host Shirley having arrived the day before the event. The next day, the day of the workshop, is one to be remembered for all time – those motswana ladies that did not attend the event – you really missed out.
The event was well organised and the program was superb encompassing aspects of beauty, hair care, regimens, demonstrations and more. Various vendors displayed and sold their goods allowing access to various good hair care brands such as Design Essentials, Ruutos, Taji, Native Child, Lebopo Organics and more. A good mix of local offerings, local speakers and other African brands and African speakers (o: I had the opportunity to talk about hair care regimens and seeing that the ladies in attendance were so receptive I decided to allow for more time to just answer hair related questions – and whoa did they ask questions and whoa was I ever so happy to answer them – it showed interest, and it showed a willingness to learn and to understand and to change. Living no Lye! The number of light bulb moments I saw lit me up inside all the more. It showed that what I was saying made sense. I like things that make sense (I’m the one who asks how the thing works e.g the software program, so that I can understand why it does or behaves the way it does lol) and so when I give talks etc I take all that knowledge and transcribe or express or translate it in a way that makes sense, makes sense not just for me but for you too. I was honoured to meet local bloggers and vloggers Naturally Lao, Lady Bawss, Afrika Bohemian, Kay Nails It and all the local naturalistahs and lovers of all things hair.
There was food and music and goody bags cutesy of Asili and the The Perfect Hair and more. Look at the effort that has gone into Afrobella’s logo and branding, that same effort coupled with such creativity delivered a truly awesome day.
Thank you Gaborone, I shall return one day soon – looking at Afrobella’s website makes me wish that I was making my hair appointment and there already.
Afrobella stocks good quality hair care products as well as use these in their studio. Their goals are clear:
– We Treat Your Afro With Care and Respect
– Our Services Produce Remarkable Results Filled with Great Experiences