History of The Matric Dance Exhibition
The first Matric Dance Exhibition (MDE) was first held at Emperor’s Palace on August 2014 and then followed by another successful event in 2015.
The sole purpose of the MDE then was to showcase young upcoming fashion designers to learners who had dreams of looking like princes and princesses at their farewell dinner despite their limited household incomes. MDE served a dual purpose – market access for young designers operating as subsistence businesses and helping learners from underprivileged communities realise their matric dance dreams on a shoe string budget. From this event, we have mentored and aided the growth of a number of now top designers who are now managing successful businesses.
In today’s day and age, one cannot underestimate the importance of design, the art of creating striking visuals to move and captivate your audience. And as the world becomes more and more digitized with each passing second, the importance of graphic design has been rocketed to the top.
Learners from schools in Gauteng, North West, Limpopo and Bloemfontein, Kimberly
who have meaningful solutions (whereto from here) for learners i.e Tertiary colleges, university registration centres.
young, predominantly female, subsistence businessowners who still will get exposure for their businesses,
MDE will regularly engage youth by contributing to meaningful conversations concerning youth on print, radio, television and social media platforms
The detour and partnership
Chief Operating Officer
Chief Operating Officer
In 2016, the exhibition was put on hold, as MDE went digital to access a market outside of Gauteng.
MDE’s online presence almost quadrupled the number of clients. The online business became the main focus. Mid-year 2016, the management of MDE was approached by an organization called ML Centres of Excellence.
ML Centres of Excellence (ML-COE) is a non-profit organization facilitating university access and career development for learners in underprivileged communities.
ML-COE had observed that learners from the schools where they worked were paying significantly high amounts to hire dresses and suits for their matric dances. ML-COE approached Matric Dance Exhibition to consider making garments for learners for the same price range without compromising on quality.
While MDE as an online business was making great strides and enjoying the success of it, we saw yet another opportunity to make an impact in the communities by partnering with ML-COE to revive the annual Matric Dance Exhibition event with an EDUCATIONAL arm to it.