WATCH|How entrepreneurship is popping up on the streets of Khayelitsha

Siyabulela Sophi (M) with two of his customers.
Siyabulela Sophi (M) with two of his customers.
Image: Beautiful News.

Rates of unemployment in South Africa rose to 29% in 2019, the highest ever in the past decade. Without enough jobs, people are having to create work for themselves.

In an effort to support his community in Khayelitsha, business-maker Siyabulela Sophi is embracing its creative talent.

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“I think entrepreneurship is the only solution that can actually move this society forward,” he says.

Sophi is the founder of MK Originals, a clothing company operating from his home that celebrates authenticity.

“I want to inspire young people by ensuring that I run a successful business within their community,” he says.


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A portion of Sophi’s profits goes towards skills development training and a local football club. “We want to change the current narrative that Khayelitsha is a jungle,” he says.

Sophi, along with other entrepreneurs, have also started Udaba Pop-Up. On the first Sunday of every month, food, drink, and clothing stalls emerge on the streets, reminding people of Khayelitsha’s capability.

“Success is meaningless if I’m going to be the only person successful within my community,” Sophi says.

Moving forward, he plans to purchase and renovate houses, turning them into stores to encourage entrepreneurship. A little inspiration is all it takes to ignite the process.

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