JA Swaziland Alumni and young entrepreneurs Sandile Dlamini and Sethule Maziya have joined about 2500 delegates at the 2017 Youth Connekt Africa Summit. Hosted by Rwandan President Paul Kagame and organized in collaboration with UNDP and UNCTAD, the Summit will be held from 19 – 21 July 2017 in Kigali, Rwanda. The summit will facilitate a platform for all partners involved in youth development to synergize around policies, programs and partnerships that will help unleash Africa’s youth potential. The summit will also mark the official roll out of the program across the rest of the continent.
The two young entrepreneurs were nominated by JA Swaziland through an invitation from the Swaziland National Youth Council (SNYC), an entity responsible for youth development in the country. Through this Summit they will interact with government leaders, executives from multinational companies that operate in Africa, leaders of civil society organizations, Africa’s development partners, members of the academia, successful young entrepreneurs, artists and youth opinion leaders from across the continent.
Both Sandile and Sethule first experienced Junior Achievement at high school through the JA Company Program and they both pursued their entrepreneurial aspirations upon completing their tertiary education. They have continued to receive support from JA Swaziland in various ways, such as monthly business lectures, to grow they businesses. They are also currently enrolled in the Out of School Program where they are trained and mentored on entrepreneurship and business management through a partnership with the FNB Foundation.
The 26 year old Sandile joined JA Swaziland at Etimphisini Central High School in the Northern Hhohho region. His entrepreneurial spirit was demonstrated when he co-founded and managed Eveni Guest House in 2011. During the same period he enrolled at the Limkokwing University of Creative Technology and completed his Business Management studies in 2015. He then started his current business, Top EMS Swaziland, providing emergency medical supplies and consulting services.
On the other hand, 22 year old Sethule participated in the JA Company program at St Michael’s High School, an all girls’ school situated in Manzini. She went to study Civil Engineering at the Swaziland College of Technology. A stint as an intern in one of the big construction companies was enough to rekindle her entrepreneurial aspirations and she co-founded Simple Construction last year.
Commenting on the nomination to participate in the Summit, Sethule said, “This is a great opportunity! The knowledge and networks we are going to build will go a long way and will help our businesses grow.”