A number of small businesses on the South Coast have been nominated for The Next Billionaire Awards 2022 to be held later this year.
The awards which are presented by Umlando Creatives are business awards.
Some of the businesses nominated include Monate Outdoor Activities and Amor Events Catering and Décor.
Mbongeni Mthembu of Monate Outdoor Activities who is nominated in the category of Tourism and Hospitality, said he was very excited to hear about his nomination, saying that the nomination meant that some people see value in his business.
“Monate Outdoor Activities focuses on outdoor events such as hiking trails, touring, and camping. I received a call from Umlando Creatives saying that the viewers have chosen my company to be one of the nominees for The Next Billionaire Awards. Growing up, we used to travel to the Uvungu River to swim, and whenever we were hungry, we would eat mangoes we found along the way. Then during the March 2020 lockdown, I was bored of staying at home so I took a walk just to clear my mind. I took pictures as many as I could then I posted them on social media, people started asking about the place. That is when the idea of this business started,” said Mthembu.
Originally from Gamalakhe, Mthembu said his goal is to build a cultural village in Gamalakhe, adding that the village will attract domestic and foreign tourists.
Mthembu said the facility would create job opportunities in Gamalakhe and surroundings areas.
“I have a belief that if we can talk with KwaMavundla Tribal Authority to share this vision and dream maybe we can try to attract the private and public sector to assist us because a business plan is in place already,” he said.
Meanwhile, Amahle Ngaleka of Amor Events Catering and Décor has been nominated in the Agriculture category.
Ngaleka said for her, the nomination alone means a lot, adding that she can now see that all her hard work was not for nothing.
She said the nomination is a beautiful chapter in her life and proof that God is real and that he listens attentively.
Ngaleka said the award nomination came after she started a garden outside her yard.
“I had run out of space with no funding in the beginning and working tirelessly for two years with many obstacles. But I persevered because the goal needs to be fulfilled. I was raised in a home of caterers, my grandmothers being domestic workers and also working the fields at home, so farming is something that got instilled in me at a very young age. I started working in the hospitality field at the age of 15, every holiday and on most weekends. Apart from any other talent I may possess, catering and serving is one of my greatest passions whereas the soil is where I belong, my garden ensures my Taste of Amor customers get the freshest and most tastiest of our meals,” she said.
She added that she would one day love to expand to not only farming vegetables, but also livestock.
Ngaleka said she also hopes to grow immensely, not alone, but with the youth in the community who would love to learn and make a living from what they have created themselves.
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