Cambridge Hall in East London was packed with young women from around the metro who were attending a socio-economic forum hosted by Bumb’INGOMSO last Thursday.
The bi-annual event is part of Bumb’INGOMSO’s leadership network that aims to change the lives of young women.
Training manager Pumla Ngesi said this particular event was aimed at the 19 to 29-year- old bracket, though they also catered for 15 to 29-year-olds.
“This event aims to motivate young women, create a space for economic empowerment and opportunities,” Ngesi said.
Four female speakers from various sectors and industries were on hand to share their success stories, alongside organisations such as Eastern Cape Development Corporation (ECDC) and Harambee Youth Employment Accelerator.
Small Enterprise Finance Agency (SEFA) core functions are to fund and mentor businesses in the sectors of the youth, women, the disabled and the previously disadvantaged.
“We give them a background on steps to take when starting a business, to assist existing businesses with expansion. Our goal is to see them grow from the root and stand on their own,” said SEFA regional administrator Pamela Ngubelanga.
Working capital such as equipment to start a business is something that the agency would be able to provide.
Sandiswa Qayi, one of the speakers, is the managing director at AET Africa, an East London-based energy efficiency company.
“My first business failed after five years but I didn’t let this situation be the end of my life. It was during this time that I was starting AET Africa that I came up with an idea to drastically cut my living expenses,” Qayi said.
Qayi developed Hotspot, an energy saving geyser sleeve that is manufactured locally.
According to the company, it can save up to 27% energy consumption and can also heat up to 50L of water at 50°C in just 30 minutes.
She encouraged the young women to be determined and to make sure that whatever they do, they do with passion.
One of the attendees, Sibongiseni Tom said this platform created inspiration for young women to do more and build confidence.
“I have a purpose in life and I want to be a better person, not just for myself but the world at large. I have a duty to have someone look up to me,” Tom said.
INSPIRATION: Sandiswa Qayi encouraged women to be determined and always try their best at the Bumb’INGOMSO socio-economic forum last week
Picture: AMANDA NANO