Harold Mkolokosa, a 29 year- old Malawian makes a living by building wooden furniture and dog kennels in Tembisa in South Africa.
Speaking to Malawi24, Mkolokosa said he went to South Africa in 2012 and started working as a gardener for a police officer.
He was however earning a low salary and he decided to look for other jobs.
“The money for garden work was so little that I couldn’t look after my family back in Malawi. I had to quit the job,” Mkolokosa said.
In 2014 he decided to work with a friend in building wooden houses and making furniture. This helped him to sharpen his skills as a carpenter.
Even though he couldn’t come up with the capital, in 2014 Mkolokosa organised a few basic tools and ventured into his own enterprise.
“I had R5 000 and bought four essential machines. I had no customers then but now I build wooden products for township and suburban customers.
“I call my small roadside workshop Wooden Carpentry and Joinery. This business employs six people. I started with only two helpers. It is a sustainable business,” he said.
The company makes dog kennels, wendy houses, benches and other wooden items.
Mkolokosa however said power cuts and water problems are the challenges they face in the business.
He said one day he hopes to have his own transport to deliver his customers’ orders.
“People must create their own jobs because there is no employment at all. Everyday life requires money. One day I want to employ more people from Tembisa, when this workshop grows to become a big factory,” he said.
Mkolokosa who is a father of one hails from Kabanu village in the area of Traditional Authority Chigalu in Blantyre.