South Africa’s unemployment rate has risen to a shocking 34.4% in Q2 of 2021, which according to Stats SA is the highest rate recorded since the start of the QLFS in 2008. With one in three South Africans looking for a job, something needs to change. SA’s private investment rate may have fallen to its lowest level in four decades but it doesn’t mean we need to stop investing time into start-ups who are looking for a leg up.
Its widely known that entrepreneurship can help to reduce unemployment as it offers paying jobs and provides employees with the means to further grow one’s own earning potential through training and on-the-job experience. The challenge is persuading people who follow this path, to not give up as it can be a lonely road fraught with obstacles.
The Entrepreneur’s Organisation (EO) is a NPO that offers peer-to-peer networking opportunities for entrepreneurs across South Africa and the globe. There are currently 198 chapters in 61 countries worldwide. EO Cape Town Chapter President, Julia Finnis-Bedford, has launched an initiative called ‘Bootcamp to Boardroom’ which aims to support young entrepreneurs as they navigate the perilous first three-year phase of their business. It will be run in collaboration with EO Diversity Chair Luvuyo Rani as well Over the Rainbow Foundation and FURTHER which focus on entrepreneurial growth, support, and sustainability.
“I am passionate about creating transformation and inclusivity within our organisation as well as our country and believe the only way to do this is to start from grassroots level. I think as entrepreneurs we need to give back and share our knowledge with younger businesses in this country and be the change we want to see. In doing this, we will be creating jobs in this country and helping young entrepreneurs help others to grow our economy,” comments EO Cape Town Chapter President, Julia Finnis-Bedford.
The EO Bootcamp to Boardroom is a FREE nine-month long programme and is ideal for entrepreneurs looking for a network, mentorship, connections, and exposure to the best business leaders in Cape Town. To be selected, start-ups will need to show they have the potential to create a social and economic impact in their communities.
Those interested are invited to apply online at https://overtherainbow.co.za/bootcamp-to-boardroom/.