by NJABULO MKHIZE
DURBAN- SCHOLARS from around the world have converged in Durban for the global teenage entrepreneurial programme, the SAGE World Cup, this weekend.
Welkom High School in the Free State and The University of KwaZulu-Natal are representing South Africa.
The MTN Foundation is the supporter of the initiative.
“At the MTN Foundation we believe that young people must be encouraged to develop their own entrepreneurial paths that will promote self-reliance,” said Kusile Mtunzi-Hairwadzi, General Manager of MTN SA Foundation.
The foundation has backed the SAGE Global Teenage Entrepreneurial Programme since 2014.
“We are delighted to once again partner with SAGE and the University of the Free State,” Mtunzi-Hairwadzi added.
The executive said MTN supported initiatives that help bring about sustainable and meaningful change in the communities it serves.
“The youth of our country are amongst the most powerful drivers of social change and we want to support harness that spirit to help create the business leaders of the future.”
Some 100 teenagers from Grades 9 to 11 and various universities, representing all nine provinces of South Africa, participated in the national competition held at the University of the Free State last month.
This saw school-goers from Welkom High School taking the top spot in the ‘Socially responsible business, with an emphasis on profit’ category. This team created a business called Electrogen, which provides communities with low-income earning households with inexpensive electricity. This is achieved through the installation of hydro-electricity systems within homes in the identified communities.
Students from the University of KwaZulu-Natal took top honours for developing a business called ZN Energy Solutions. This was the winning idea in the ‘Social enterprise business, emphasizing social value’ category. ZN Energy Solutions is a company that supplies cost-effective, clean, solar-powered energy systems to middle-to-low income households and businesses in the Pietermaritzburg area.
Since 2014, 60 students have completed the entrepreneurship training provided by the University of the Free State as part of the support given to the South African teams specifically.
The winning teams in 2016 represented SAGE SA at the World Cup competition in the Philippines, and in 2017 in Odessa, Ukraine.
“The global finals is bringing networking opportunities with big corporates and like-minded peers from around the world closer to South Africa’s talented young entrepreneurs,” concluded Mtunzi-Hairwadzi.
– CAJ News