Who is Puno Selesho?
This is an inspiring young woman and one of the Vital Few in our society.
While studying law, she also juggles pursuing her passions by empowering women through community upliftment. She touches hearts through her poetry and creates platforms for people to discuss ideas that challenge their perspectives on life.
Puno discovered the value of expressing her ideas through poetry while still at school. Her thoughts and journal entries transformed into rhythmic and eloquent verses and she continued her interest after school. TEDx Pretoria invited Puno to perform a poem about changing one’s view on superheroes. Puno participates in Open Mic evenings and she is a regular guest at Spoken Sessions in Pretoria. She is currently on her way to Germany to deliver a poem about women and technology at the Re:publica digital conference.
Here are some of her other projects:
The Cherry Blossom Project
As she stared at her worn matric dance dress, Puno realised that there could be someone out there who would be able to wear her dress. An idea sprung to mind, and in 2014 she started The Cherry Blossom Project where underprivileged girls could borrow dresses for their matric farewell. She has received numerous donations of dresses and has been able to register the organisation as a Non-governmental Organisation. Ladies who are unable to afford it are now able to borrow dresses for formal functions.
Their slogan, Unearthing her worth one dress at a time points to the organisation’s aim of not only making dresses available for functions but to equip girls to reach their dreams despite their circumstances. Wellness days are hosted and practical sessions are presented where life skills are conveyed, such as compiling a CV or steps for starting a business etc.
The Park Exchange
Since 2014, Puno has been hosting open dialogue events, where people can discuss their different views on relevant issues in the South African context. Speakers share their beliefs and perspectives and the audience can interact and challenge their worldviews. Park Exchange will soon host their first dinner event. At this event, a small number of people will have the opportunity to engage in an open dialogue dinner setting. Tickets will be advertised on social media.
Find The Park Exchange here.
Puno’s advice on pursuing your passion
- Never turn down an opportunity where you could network with other people.
- Always give your best. Your efforts could open up doors to new possibilities.
- You don’t have to be incredible, you just have to be willing.
- It’s good to dream big, but start where you’re at.
- Use the resources you have available to you.
- Do not be afraid to fail.
- Do not dismiss ideas.
- Surround yourself with people who can dream with you as well as inspire you.