COPPERSTONE Event Production & Creative Agency launched its first annual SA Bachelor & Bachelorette of the Year in 2011. The competition was started to find South Africa’s most eligible bachelor or bachelorette, someone who encompasses brains, beauty, entrepreneurship and the spirit of Ubuntu – a competition where single individuals who want to bring about change can make a difference and create awareness through charity or community work.

During the 7 years of the SA Bachelor & Bachelorette competition, we raised awareness, products and services and funds in excess of R800 000 for various charities. NGO’s supported thus far include: Jacaranda and Louis Botha Children’s Homes, Berg-en-Dal, Foodbank SA, Amadea Safe house, Cansa and their TLC Homes and CHOC.

We are extremely proud of what we have accomplished with the competition since 2011. Thousands of entries, hundreds of finalists, more than 20 judges, more than 150 charity events, hundreds of media publications, television coverage, live-streaming at our Gala events and 12 winners later, it was time for a change. Business today is characterised by relentless change. To stay competitive, companies must continually grow and evolve in order to stay relevant, innovative, and fresh. We define growth as an increase in the scope of activities and/or renewal of capabilities. The biggest reason for the competition evolving is to remain a competition unique in South Africa.

During the past few years we wanted to change a few things to make the competition open to everyone who wanted to bring about change and do their bit for charity. To develop the competition into one where everyone who wants to bring about change are eligible to enter, a name-change was needed. We also had 2 main limitations with the SA Bachelor & Bachelorette name- the misconception that the finalists entered to find a partner, and the misinterpretation that we are a pageant and that looks are essential for entering. The finalists and winners are compassionate, humane, unselfish, altruistic, generous, kind, sympathetic, charitable, philanthropic, public-spirited, socially concerned and concerned with or seeking to promote human welfare. The competition’s new name encompasses all these qualities; the HUMANITARIAN OF THE YEAR competition.

For us it has always been important that finalists are presentable, well-spoken, take care of themselves, hard-working and reflect the spirit of Ubuntu- people who believe in giving back and who want to change the world one person at a time. We believe in bringing about change, one person at a time. If you wait until you can do everything for everybody instead of doing something for somebody, you’ll end up doing nothing for nobody.

Humanitarianism is probably the most important “ism” in the world today. Words such as “charity” and “philanthropy” describe a voluntary act, a matter of kindness rather than duty. For us humanitarianism is more a duty we are obligated to do while we’re renting our space on earth. Or maybe it is a combination of kindness and duty- a gift we HAVE to give.

We believe in getting your hands dirty, to go out and make a significant contribution to the world we live in. At the end of the day, a humanitarian does not look for glory or praise. His or her main goal is to make a difference in the world they live in, to make someone’s life a little bit better.

After the evolution of the competition, Sharne Labotski won the first Humanitarian of the Year title in 2017.

In 2018 the biggest change to the competition will be that EVERYONE aged 20 and up will be eligible for entry. It will be open for anyone who wants to do their bit for charity, regardless of marital status, gender, race or sexual orientation. All ages 20 and up will be able to compete for the HUMANITARIAN of the Year title. Together we can bring about change.


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