Brand South Africa, through its long standing partnership with Grow Supplier ZA™ collaborated with the Small Enterprise Development Agency (SEDA), Rand Water Foundation and the Bushbuckridge Local Municipality in Acornhoek, Mpumalanga. The engagement, which took place on Thursday, 20 June 2019 aimed to promote youth entrepreneurship by providing young business owners with an opportunity to interact with one another as well as with relevant stakeholders from the public sector. This is in line with Brand South Africa’s endeavor to work with and through various stakeholders for the promotion of the Nation Brand reputation.
“25 years into democracy, youth unemployment continues to be a challenge for South Africa. In light of this, Brand South Africa welcomed the opportunity to partner on youth entrepreneurship as a means to tackle the issue of unemployment in the country. We firmly believe that youth owned and/or managed businesses can play an important role in job creation and economic development which are one of the seven priorities that President Cyril Ramaphosa outlined in his State of the Nation Address”, says George Khoza, Strategic Relationship Manager for Business at Brand South Africa.
Attendees had an opportunity to share some of their experiences – challenges and opportunities – as young business owners. Many of them expressed frustrations with regards to funding for and subsequent growth of their businesses. They also received information from stakeholders such as the Department of Tourism, Department of Agriculture, National Development Agency (NDA), Local Tourism Organisation (LTO), and National Youth Development Agency (NYDA), to name a few.
Florence Musundwa, Founder of Grow Supplier ZA™ commended the young entrepreneurs for taking first step and establishing businesses. She left them with some words of encouragement saying “Entrepreneurship means you are taking financial control over your life and no one can take that away from you. It is powerful. When you find yourself struggling in your journey, don’t give up but also take care of your mental and physical health as business can be stressful” she concluded.