Yolisa bead­ing her way to suc­cess

Vuk'uzenzele - - General - Dale Hes

A LOVE FOR cre­ativ­ity has led Fuma to es­tab­lish­ing a thriv­ing busi­ness.

Yolisa Fuma has walked a re­mark­able road from liv­ing in poverty in the Eastern Cape, to dis­cov­er­ing a pas­sion for arts and crafts and now run­ning her own work­shops to share her skills with un­em­ployed women.

Fuma was born in a township out­side Queen­stown in the Eastern Cape, shar­ing a small house with 15 fam­ily mem­bers.

“My fam­ily did not have enough money to send me to school. With­out an ed­u­ca­tion, I had to find my own way to make an in­come,” said Fuma.

She spent many hours learn­ing to cro­chet and moved to Cape Town to live with her sis­ter. Fuma then taught her­self to do bead­work, and moved to Mbek­weni in Paarl in search of greener pas­tures.

“There were many peo­ple who were ask­ing for bead­work. So I looked at a few bead prod­ucts and took them apart step-by-step to find out how they were made. I then taught my­self to make my own prod­ucts and be­gan sell­ing them from the Ik­wezi Cen­tre in Paarl,” she said.

Fuma was one of the 20 emerg­ing crafts pro­duc­ers to be se­lected by the Drak­en­stein Lo­cal Mu­nic­i­pal­ity and the Drak­en­stein Lo­cal Tourism As­so­ci­a­tion (DLTA), to at­tend a four-day train­ing pro­gramme hosted by the Craft and De­sign In­sti­tute (CDI).

The pro­gramme taught par­tic­i­pants to pro­duce sam­ples of mar­ket-rel­e­vant prod­ucts that would help the crafters to de­velop their own busi­nesses.

“The work­shop taught us how to de­velop our own busi­ness plans. I am very thank­ful for the op­por­tu­nity, as I will be able to grow my busi­ness,” Fuma ex­plained.

Her beaded and cro­cheted prod­ucts have now been bought by cus­tomers from Ger­many and Swe­den.

“It has been dif­fi­cult at times, but with the sup­port of the CDI and the mu­nic­i­pal­ity, I have been able to start mak­ing some money and sup­port­ing my four chil­dren. Many of my dreams are be­ing re­alised,” said Fuma.

She de­cided that she wanted to pass her knowl­edge and skills on to un­em­ployed women in the area, so that they could also start gen­er­at­ing the in­come they needed to sup­port their fam­i­lies.

“I am cur­rently run­ning work­shops in my house to train three other women who don’t have jobs. I am hop­ing that I will soon be able to em­ploy them in my busi­ness,” Fuma said.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.