‘Never give up, keep on knocking on those doors of success and never be afraid or discouraged to start small with big dreams,” says Khethiwe Promise Maseko, 34. She is a domestic worker-turned-chicken farmer. After matriculating, she completed several short courses on call centre management and computer skills.
Khethiwe’s life changed when Sasol’s #AmIPreneur campaign and Harambe, a youth employment accelerator, came to her area to recruit unemployed youth for a business skills development programme. The year-long programme was tough, and many participants dropped out, but Khethiwe saw a niche for herself in agriculture. People where she lived had to travel long distances to buy chickens.
Her business idea of starting her own poultry enterprise won her the first prize in the programme. She used the voucher to buy 50 chickens and started Gugulam Poultry House. When only 15 of the 50 chickens survived, she was discouraged but her determination paid off. The expensive lesson taught her crucial steps every chicken farmer should take, including the importance of vaccinations. She networked with other farmers using social media and has reduced the mortality rate to 5%. She started attending training courses for farmers and adopted the use of inexpensive home remedies. Soon, her business started growing and she became well-known in her community as a supplier.
Khethiwe has a lot of followers on TikTok and Facebook where she motivates and inspires others to reach their dreams.
What is the best piece of advice you've ever been given?
Never give up, keep on knocking on those doors of success and never be afraid or discouraged to start small with big dreams
Our theme this year is Accelerating Equality & Empowerment in Women. How do you empower yourself and women around you?
Knowledge is power; always be hungry for it.
If you could change or achieve one thing for South Africa today, what would it be?
I share my skills with other women and motivate them on where I come from. I empower myself with the knowledge that I always implement on daily bases