Magdalena Nambinga – Namibia

Date: November 9, 2015
  • SHARE:

Magdalena`s mobile shop is a source of livelihood for a survivor of gender based violence

“This has changed my life. I am independent and in control of my destiny.”

Madgalena is a single mother of two who runs a mobile shop in Outapi in Namibia. She was inspired to start this business by the fact that she was unemployed but had children to feed, school fees to pay and parents to care for so she opened a mobile shop selling groceries and household goods to the communities around the outskirts of Outapi town. She says she finds the business very productive because she brings goods to people`s doorsteps and the old members of the community love it.

Her products include mealie meal, sugar, salt, Vaseline and other materials. Her life has changed dramatically because now she can afford to put food on the table and send her children to school and also provide for her old parents. Magdalena says that through attending Gender Links’ entrepreneurship workshop she learnt the importance of opening a bank account. This helped her to save a lot of money and to avoid losing her money to thieves.

Ms Nambinga credits Gender Links for teaching her important business skills like budgeting, planning and marketing. Although her products are selling well, her complaint is that she faces serious competition from established entities like Shoprite. She also says that at times she suffers because creditors who owe her for the goods they have borrowed fail to honour their commitments. In Outapi the weather can be very hot and selling goods in the sun can be daunting. The sun and wind affect her products causing her to lose thousands of dollars of potential income.

Magdalena has managed to employ three people to help her sell products. She says her future plans include buying a bigger truck which she can use to transport her goods across the vicinity. She also hopes that the council of Outapi will allocate her a place from which to work so that she can stop commuting. Magdalena grew up in Outapi and she understands the business environment of the council very well.

The business is not yet registered with the ministry of finance, ministry of trade and industry and social security. Magdalena hopes that the business will eventually self-promote or market its products but meanwhile she is giving out business cards, brochures, and using word of mouth to advertise. She understands the local environment and she has good communication skills with potential customers.

Magdalena says she was lucky to be included in phases 1 and 2 of the entrepreneurship training which taught her a lot about drafting a business plan, budgeting, recording of transactions and basic bookkeeping. She is very grateful that the training Gender Links Namibia provided to her for free helped turn around the fortunes of her business. She started to realise exponential profit and growth. She says that writing her “I” story helped heal the wounds and was very therapeutic psychologically. She says the programme she has been through so far has taught her to be very innovative.

Magdalena is a driver of change because she is a living example of a woman who bravely survived gender based violence (GBV) to become a successful entrepreneur through the help of Gender Links. She is an inspiration to many women in her community and has vowed to preach against GBV to other women and men. Although she is not highly educated, she intends to conduct market research to see the potential for growth in her business. She is looking forward to employing more women as her business grows and her merchandise diversifies. Securing registration with the relevant ministries will make it easier for the business to be used as collateral when borrowing more capital from the bank.

Ms Nambinga says her potential customers are community members and can be reached via cell phone or by directly approaching them. She already has a database list of potential customers. She credits Gender Links Namibia for exposing her work to the council hence enabling her to demand working space from the relevant authorities.

Martha`s most memorable experience was when she won an award at the national summit in Namibia.



Comment on Magdalena Nambinga – Namibia

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *