“Anything is possible.” That’s Sphilile Nxumalo’s optimistic outlook, two years after joining a savings group. It wasn’t always like that.
In 2017 she was a 27-year-old mother of three from Estcourt who was studying for a Bachelor of Accounting degree at the University of Zululand.
“When I started saving I wasn’t sure how to increase my money, as I was studying,” she says. “But after the second share-out I had an idea to run a small business to increase my money, because I was not working.”
In 2018 Nxumalo used her social grant to save five shares of R100 each per month. She also borrowed R2250 from her SG to buy 50 chairs at R45 per chair. After repaying the loan she borrowed a further R1600 to purchase four tables at R400 each, her aim being to start a business where she hired them out for events in the area. For this she would charge R4 per chair and R30 per table.
She used her 2018 shareout of R7500 to increase her assets to 200 chairs and seven tables, and says the business is now flourishing. The community supports her and uses her service for local parties, funerals, meetings and other events.
Nxumalo uses her father’s car to deliver the furniture to events, employing a driver to do deliveries. She’s planning to obtain a drivers’ licence at the end of this year.
The community’s support has encouraged her to expand and she’s planning to invest in a marquee tent, which will increase her opportunities and add value to what she can offer clients.
Nxumalo credits the SaveAct programme with changing her life.
“Since I started saving I was able to open my business and feed my family. I think positive and do positive things since I joined the savings group.
“As a young single parent it’s sometimes hard to raise children. I had to be strong and made sure my dream came true. I want other young people to be encouraged as well.”