YDF Makes Dreams Come True for Wood Crafters

| May 6, 2015

In 2013, Mr Michael Mooki, 34, and his business partner, Mr Davis Mareka, 29, became some of the happiest people as they got an opportunity to run a wood crafting project they had long dreamt of, thanks to the Youth Development Fund (YDF).

When the pair was called for business training at the time they knew that their longtime dream of owning a business one day was becoming a reality, and they never stopped hailing the YDF programme.

In an interview with BOPA recently, they noted that through YDF they had managed to attend to the necessities of their project and they are now financially independent.

Looking at them sweating it out in their workshop, one is easily convinced that the two have clearly heeded the government’s clarion call for young people to make a living out of any of the several programmes meant to empower them economically.

Mr Mareka said they were funded to the tune of P85 000 in 2013, noting that the department of youth also enhanced their business skills by training them in financial and resource management, as well as on how to evaluate and monitor the business.

He said they bought woodwork machinery such as a chain saw, dental machine, die grinder, angle grinder, among other relevant implements to realise their dream.

“Carpentry for us started as a hobby because during our own time, we would play around with wood and that grew with time until we met with Mr Mpho Gonde who volunteered to teach us more on wood crafting and he still mentors us up to this day,” Mr Mareka said.

In addition, he noted that in 2012 they learnt about YDF and what it stood for and applied for assistance which they got any without qualm.

He said they specialised in products such as animal sculptures, stools and anything that the customer might have called for.

“We use motswere tree logs for carving out our products because of the tree’s quality it does not crack easily like other species, and we mainly produce animal sculptures because they are on high demand compared to other products,” he said.

The youthful wood carver said their products, which sell from P200 pula to P6 000 a piece, depending on the size and design had managed to penetrate the local market including individuals, guest houses and hotels.

Mr Mooki added that, with their crafting skills, they participated in the Presidential Arts competitions at both regional and national levels and scooped position one with a cash prize of P3 000 and position three with cash prize of P6 000 respectively.

Meanwhile, Mr Gonde, who mentors the duo, said it was wise for the youth to consider making use of natural resources around them so as to empower themselves.

He said they should also implement innovative and creative strategies that could create jobs for others and help contribute towards the growth of the country’s economy.

Source : BOPA

Source : Botswana Daily News

Category: General

Comments are closed.