Article by: Busani Dlamini (PAY Intern at Records Management and WeCan24 reporter).
In celebration of Women’s Day, Provincial Treasury recently hosted a pop-up shop with female owned businesses and non-profit organisations (NGO) at the Legislature Building.
This was an opportunity for these organisations to exhibit their products and potentially make sales (which they did). Their products mainly being African clothing but there was a stand with a variety of indigenous plants.
These entrepreneurs previously received training from Treasury’s Chartered Accountant Academy (CAA) over a 10 month period. The CAA has taught these start-up business women about liquidity, budgeting, income and expense sheets, managing costs and establishing the price of their products. The business owners are part of the Forward Fund, a non-profit organisation dedicated to assisting small businesses through funding and opportunities, offering interest free loans and exposure to markets.
Beading for My Soul owned by Nomande Ngqenyana, is one of the businesses that promoted their products on the day. Her business is located in Nyanga East where it has been in operation since 2001. Beading for My Soul produces African clothing and crafts with everything being hand-made. “My business has grown. You must have the right products with the right quality and you must always be there” says Ms Ngqenyana. The challenges faced by her business include people looking at products and complimenting the items without making a purchase and also the costs of accessing markets at places such as Kirstenbosch Gardens and the Convention Centre.
Another exhibitor, Videfi, an NGO which focusses on upskilling females from previously disadvantaged areas by teaching them computer skills, sewing and hairdressing over a three months. Videfi sells products that is made during training sessions and the proceeds from the sales are injected back into the organisation to assist with finances for further training. Videfi has projects in Phillipi, Parow, Khayelitsha and Nyanga.
The event was an overall success with support not only from Treasury staff but also staff from other departments and some stands even sold out. The organisations made sales and got the opportunity to market their products, network with regards to economic development opportunities and highlighted South Africa’s entrepreneurial spirit.