monique strydom

the art of survival

Award winning keynote speaker, trainer and former actress, Monique Strydom, is known as one of the 21 hostages who was held hostage by Abu Sayyaf rebels for 127 days in the jungle on the Philippine island of Jolo in 2000.

Their group was in the hands of murderous terrorists, under continuous attack by the military, had to run for their lives through unforgiving territory, had very little food and water and were subject to many other dangers. The fact that not one of the hostages was killed is seen as a miracle. Her story of life and death, survival and hardship has captivated people all over the world. Her story is a real one, an inspirational one - one of NEVER GIVING UP!

Pres Nelson Mandela commended Monique for her bravery and her efforts to help others in need. He was keen to hear her story - why not let her share her survival lessons with your audience too?

Her story might sound like a Hollywood movie, but it will inspire every person to Never Give Up!

awards and recognition

ATKV Best Actress Award 1990, Murray & Roberts Best Public Relations Student 1992, Newsmaker of the year award 2001, Fair Lady White Ribbon Finalist 2001, Rotary International Paul Harris Award 2009, "Hero of the Year" Award Lions 2012, Johnny Walker Sunday Times Nation Greatest Individual (finalist) 2013, Santam Women of the Future Finalist (CSI) 2023


Monique is an international speaker offering various inspirational and motivational topics for both corporate and public events.


Monique has been instrumental in the training of thousands of frontline staff and first responders and is one of the developers of a unique first responders training course.


Monique has authored and co-authored two best selling books. And has written several educational scripts and performance pieces for children's theatre.


She is an actress by profession and has vast experience in television, radio, stage and public relations. Her story of survival was covered by international networks.

charity work

Monique is the founder of Matla a Bana - A voice against child abuse. Her award winning South African NPO helps 30 000 plus abused children every year.


Monique received a personal recommendation from Nelson Mandela and many more from happy clients.