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ESG South Africa

Castle Milk Stout and Contralesa are steadfast on cementing Ancestor's Day in the national calendar

Woven into the social fabric of African spirituality is a profound reverence for ancestors – those who came before and laid the foundations upon which present generations stand. In this respect, Castle Milk Stout and Contralesa continue a dynamic journey to have Ancestor's Day officially enshrined as a national day of commemoration in South Africa.
Castle Milk Stout and Contralesa are steadfast on cementing Ancestor's Day in the national calendar

Since the symbolic inscription of Ancestor's Day at Mathibela Royal Palace in 2021, Castle Milk Stout and Contralesa have tirelessly collaborated with traditional communities, including traditional healers, heritage practitioners, spiritual mediums, cultural custodians, and motive forces to raise awareness around its immense significance throughout South Africa and the region. However, despite considerable efforts, the path to securing official recognition has proven arduous.

"Our dream of having Ancestor's Day recognised as a national day has been harder to realise than we anticipated," admitted Khwezi Vika, marketing manager for Castle Milk Stout. "Nevertheless, our commitment to preserving this vital aspect of our heritage remains unshaken. We will continue advocating, as we believe this will be meaningful to our people who practice African Spirituality."

A profound significance

The 8 May carries profound symbolic weight, not only aligning with Africa Month's celebration of identity but also representing the infinite, eternal bond between Africans and their forebears.

As HRH Zolani Mkiva, secretary general of Contralesa, said: "Our ancestors are the unshakable foundation upon which we build our present and future. Recognising and honouring their enduring wisdom, guidance, and sacrifices is a profoundly unifying sentiment shared by all Africans."

In the spirit of this unity, Castle Milk Stout has issued a rallying call to all South Africans to raise their voices in support of the Ancestor's Day campaign. By signing the petition at or joining the flourishing #AncestorsDay conversation on social media, every citizen can play their part in having this day recognised.

Contralesa is making a humble appeal to South Africans to join the march in support of the Ancestor's Day campaign through signing the petition or joining the online conversation. "As Contralesa, we are making a royal call to all our people to invoke their originality, which in essence is their Africanness. It is in our best interest to go back to our spiritual roots so that we can find progression in our developmental agenda. It is only through our spiritual resolve that we can process the hopes and dreams of our forefathers. The unwritten mandate of our Ancestors must be honoured wholeheartedly by foregrounding African spirituality in the management of the national question."

A renaissance celebration

Moreover, to reignite fervour and reaffirm the brand's commitment, Castle Milk Stout, in partnership with Contralesa, will host the annual Ancestor's Day Imbizo – a multifaceted celebration through the lenses of education, music, art, and fashion. This landmark event aims to foster intergenerational knowledge exchange, enabling attendees to dive into the rich tapestry of African ancestral veneration and continue the dialogue of having this day recognised.

"Ancestor's Day is a unifying force that allows us to honor our roots while embracing an era of African renaissance," Vika explained. "By commemorating this day, we pay tribute to those who walked before us – the trailblazers who laid the foundation for our rich cultural tapestry and inspired us with the wisdom to forge ahead."

A timeless legacy

The significance of Ancestor's Day reverberates far beyond a single observance. Throughout South Africa, Ancestors have long been revered as guardians of tradition, custodians of knowledge, and beacons of spiritual brilliance. Their influence is not confined to the realm of the past but rather an ever-present force that continues to inspire and empower generations.

In South Africa, a nation renowned for its diversity, recognising Ancestor's Day is a profound reaffirmation, reclamation, and restoration of the multifaceted African identity and heritage that shape the national experience. As African organic intellectual Frans Fanon puts it, "each generation must, out of relative obscurity, discover its mission, fulfil it or betray it." The antiquity entailed in the cultural beauty of the mother continent is beyond measure. The uniqueness that manifests in the African historiography is unequalled. The African heritage is so spectacular that it is the melting pot for humanity at large.

It is this rich tapestry, this indomitable spirit that Ancestor's Day seeks to honor and preserve – a timeless ode to the men and women whose sacrifices paved the way for a future rooted in African pride, resilience, and identity.

In the pursuit of this noble endeavour, Castle Milk Stout stands firmly alongside Contralesa and communities across the nation, amplifying their call for Ancestor's Day to be eternalised as a national day of observance – a rallying force to celebrate our shared heritage and ensure the wisdom of our ancestors illuminates every step into the future.

In a bid to get Ancestor's Day officially recognised, all South Africans are encouraged to sign the petition in support of this progressive initiative.

For more information and queries visit the official Castle Milk Stout social media accounts:
Twitter: @CastleMilkStout
Facebook: Castle Milk Stout
Instagram: @castlemilkstout_sa
YouTube: Castle Milk Stout

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