Passing the baton to the next generation
With the crafters we work with, beading is a skill that has been passed down from generation to generation. For some it is a family tradition, whilst for others it is done in community groups for income and fellowship. Passing on the skill is an intricate process that requires patience and dedication – both from the one passing on the skill to the one on the receiving end.
Having celebrated June as Youth Month in South Africa, we profile a young person that is taking on the baton and helping her mother to make a success of her business. 28 year old Sthembile Mjaja, (pictured above wearing an Intshebe Zulu necklace), daughter of Thobekile Mjaja, defines herself as born in a first generation of a rainbow nation that is alive with possibilities. She is a designer who specialises in making traditional outfits, which complement her mothers’ beaded jewellery. Together they run a curio shop that supplies us with some of our traditional Zulu jewellery. We believe that as we partner with and support young people like her, we are helping to shape the next generation that will take South Africa forward.
Mobile Payment Systems
As a business we have invested a fair amount of time and money in tools and systems that we believe add value to what we do. One of these is the BluMobi mobile payment device from Standard Bank – which is a wireless and portable card payment device which links to a smart phone via an app and enables payment transactions. This has worked well for us, especially at our shop based at the Neighbourgoods Market in Braamfontein. It enables our customers to transact without the need to carry cash.
Our online shop with e-commerce facility (powered by Connection House) is also receiving a fair amount of traffic and has started processing transactions. This month we received this testimonial from a very satisfied customer: “Hi Swazi and Mamas
I have been so pleased to purchase your products on several occasions. The most recent was an online order which went surprisingly well. I was a bit intimidated at first and phoned Swazi after a few hours of ordering to confirm she received it. The order was delivered by Swazi on time before I needed it. The packaging was lovely and the order was complete. Another lovely touch was she rushed part of the order in less than a week and blessed me with a little thank you surprise. I would highly recommend the African Mamas products and service. Caroline Webb”
As we begin the 2nd half of the year, we are grateful to all our customers for their continued support and we continuously give thanks to God for all that He is enables us to do. Onwards and upwards we go!
Till next month,
Goodbye, Salani Kahle & Totsiens,
Founder & Director
African Mamas Crafts