Lydia Zingoni is Founder and Director of SA Teen Entrepreneur Foundation. She holds several degrees in Economic History, Information management, and marketing. She has worked for several years as an Information specialist in The United Kingdom, Zimbabwe and South Africa. Her last corporate job as CPUT Libraries Director, exposed her to the business formation needs of potential young entrepreneurs. Lydia, has run several businesses of her own in book trade, business information directories, free advertising papers, to internet cafes. Her passion has been and still is to instil the young minds to a culture of entrepreneurship. SA Teen Entrepreneur Foundation was formed purely as a channel for the cultivation and promotion of an entrepreneurial culture in all our teens in South Africa and beyond. To date there are 21, 5 million Teens in South Africa out of a total population of 53 Million people. Therefore Teenagers represent more than a third of the nation’s population. Through SA Teen Entrepreneur Foundation Lydia’s dream is create entrepreneurial programmes, Plant entrepreneurial societies in Schools and drive entrepreneurship programs from the grassroots, and seed networks that will penetrate to teenagers into all provinces.
Digital Platform: A shortcut to reaching youth with entrepreneurship engaging training
The question should be asked – “how can we get young people interested or increase the appetite for entrepreneurship training”? The answer to this rests squarely in getting the attention of young people in the digital places they constantly frequent. SA Teen Entrepreneur Trust has been working in the schools and running fully face to face 15 module entrepreneurship program. The appetite is there among our young people to learn and grasp the concepts, but the challenge is “how can we ever reach all those that can show interest?” The resources to do this on a face to face teaching are enormous and by the time we mobilize these we would have lost a full generation. The solution is in leveraging on technology and getting the basic concepts to each and every young person in the device they already have, the mobile phone. It will also take very clever ways of getting the content optimized to be more engaging, build a number of rewards, competitions, and constant messaging to keep them hooked. SA Teen Entrepreneur Foundation has done this and mobilized other partners to come on board and contribute to this vision: Every1Mobile, Rlabs, BeBold, ABA – A-Better-Africa have all joined in the project. What will become a hub and hive of new engagement has also attracted a number of corporate companies to create wallets of prizes to the excelling young learners and this system to be administered by the Crypto-currency created by RLabs