Charmaine Baartman (34), owner of Mamfene’s Takeaway, in Britstown in the Northern Cape, is growing her micro enterprise into a sustainable small business with the help of development funding, so that she can begin employing more local community members and take on new challenges and bigger dreams, which includes helping marginalised children.
In fact, she is already viewed as a success; having managed to keep her head above water during the tough COVID-19 economic climate, in addition to improving her business skills through the De Aar Solar Power’s Enterprise Development Accelerator Programme, she has continued to grow her business over the last year.
“The skills I’ve learnt from the mentorship programme, especially the financial training, will assist me with being able to keep track of my financials even when I’m busy with my social work duties,” explained Baartman, who has used the funds received from De Aar Solar Power to renovate her business, to comply with health and safety regulations, including the installation of a sink and ablution facilities, as well as purchase stock and equipment.
Mamfene’s Takeaway has added a motorised scooter to her company assets, as the Programme has funded the purchase of a delivery scooter, which will add a whole new level of service and will no doubt be a novelty in her community.
Future business plans include employing community members, at least four, and expanding to include a ‘Shisha Nyama’, which is a Zulu word that literally translates into ‘burnt meat’, otherwise more widely known as a ‘braai’.
With the funding and her business income, Baartman has been able to return to her studies, as she works towards completing her NQF4 Social Auxiliary Work qualification through Continuing Education for Africa (CEFA) later this year.
“It is very inspiring to see women-owned youth businesses growing stronger. Charmaine Baartman is a wonderful example of a young woman that is dedicated to making her future a success and the same time taking care of her community,” said Zuki Ndlela, Economic Development Specialist for De Aar Solar Power.
Charmaine Baartman is one of four entrepreneurs selected to receive funding and business support, as part of De Aar Solar Power’s Enterprise Development Accelerator Programme, a collaboration with Angels Resource Centres. The training and support helps to create viable small businesses and support budding entrepreneurs in the Pixley Ka Seme district’s rural towns of Britstown, Hanover, Philipstown and De Aar, as financial support is usually not adequate, without the necessary mentoring.