Zimbabwe: Sinikiwe Hove

Date: September 25, 2018
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“Striving to prevent the spread of diseases causing organisms in the community.”

Sinikiwe Hove is a beneficiary of the Gender Links’ entrepreneurship programme. She has a lot of positive words to say with regards to the entrepreneurship programme. Since the day she was trained her life improved considerably and she has got this to say: “I was taught about business planning which had assisted me to manage my business and my life in general. I learnt that one needs to plan his or her life before they can succeed in planning their business. That is why I started by undergoing a massive transformation of how I do things at home. I changed the way I behave, the way I treat my children and the way I relate with others. This behavioural change has been transferred to the way I treat my customers and peers,” she says.  

The entrepreneurship trainers equipped her with financial management skills. Instead of keeping her money in a pillow case or inside a cabinet drawer, the trainers advised her to open a bank account and make sure that her transactions were done through the bank. She can proudly state that she own a bank account. “My major challenge is to make sure that my account is active. The amount of money I am making is still inadequate to warrant every transaction to go through the bank. However, the business is in transition. I have taken note of the advice I was given by Gender Links and I am working hard towards ensuring that the business realises significant profits,” she says.  

Her business is performing quite well considering the fact that it is on a transitional phase. She can now afford to pay school fees for her children. “My kids used to be humiliated by being told to leave the classroom because of non-payment of fees. Gladly, I have managed to address this problem. No child of mine will ever be disgraced in front of peers. Gender Links made it possible for me to recognise what is important and how to prioritise it,” she says. 

Entrepreneurial training enlightened her on the opportunities and risks associated with doing business. She managed to weigh her options and she made a sound decision of venturing into a detergent making business. “I first consider the impact of a different course of action, prior to making a choice. I do not operate on instinct anymore but I make well calculated decisions,” she says. 

She became a mentor to up-coming business people. At first, when people saw her attending the training session at the Council they thought she was just attending a course with no substance. To their surprise, they are now seeing the results of her training and they are admiring. 

As she enjoys her success, she always reflects on the path she travelled to be where she is today. Before her encounter with GL she used to dig quarry stones and sell them in her community. She was the only woman among a group of men who were into this illegal trade which was done only during the night. “That is how I got the money to start my business,” she said with a smile on her face. 

“My only wish is for Gender Links to continue with more programmes of this nature because they are valuable. The organisation should not lose direction. I have learnt a lot of things which I am now imparting to others. Gender Links must never underestimate the positive effect it is having on the women of Tshovani. These programmes open our minds to a whole new perspective, which was invisible to us,” she says. 

She is now an empowered woman who does not look down upon herself anymore. She considers herself to be special. She vowed never to live the life of a pauper because she is now economically empowered. “I declare that poverty will not visit my doorstep again. As women, we sometimes invite poverty through poor decisions. If there is anything that I have learnt from the entrepreneurship training is that poverty comes from bad decisions,” she says.