One man’s vision to empower the youth

Written by Ursula Graaff

Electrical engineer Sbusiso Mahlangu(33) is his own boss, thanks to the support he received from the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA).

Electrical engineer Sbusiso Mahlangu passionate about job creation.He received grant funding and support to start Mthimunye Consolidated Projects Kwaggafontein ing Mpumalang and does high-, medium- and low-voltage electrical work.

Mahlangu’s team finds and fixes cable faults, installs distribution boards that supply electricity to homes and office buildings, fixes electricity connectors, services electrical machinery and does installations, amongst other things.

When asked where his passion stems from, Mahlangu says he was a curious young boy who loved solving problems and coming up with solutions. “Growing up, my older brother and I were problem solvers. I knew from there I was an innovative person.”

Mahlangu heard about the NYDA on a TV programme and approached his local office for assistance to start his own company.

The response from the NYDA was positive and Mahlangu was enrolled on an entrepreneurship skills programme offered by the NYDA.

He also received assistance to obtain a BBBEE certificate and received nearly R50 000 in grant funding. He used the cash to buy equipment, tools and a laptop for the business.

Although Mthimunye Consolidated Projects was registered in 2014, it did not start operating until 2017 because Mahlangu did not have his electrical trade certificate. He remained focused, however, and worked as a teacher to pay for the courses needed to get his trade certificate.

“I’m not where I want to be, but when I look back at where I was, there’s movement,” he says.

Mahlangu currently has four temporary employees and hopes to grow his business and employ more people.

“I want to motivate the underprivileged and the youth. I would like to employ them and I want to change their situation,” says Mahlangu, who is eager to find innovative solutions through industrial automation.  

For more information on the NYDA, visit www.nyda.gov.za or call 087 158 6345 / 5738. Alternatively, you can send an email to info@nyda.gov.za