Recognising that those with low incomes need access to financial education in order to better manage their finances and, as a result, experience greater financial freedom, was the inspiration behind the creation of Ndima Yam NPC. This South African NPO was formed to make a difference in the lives of the country’s communities by creating greater financial literacy amongst its neediest citizens.
LoA found out more about this impactful organisation this month from one of its founders, Pheliswa Nomdatya and its vision for empowering others.
What does your company do?
Ndima Yam is a Non-Profit organisation registered with the sole purpose of providing budget coaching and financial educational training to the low-income population in communities to enable them to experience a greater degree of financial freedom. The core focus is to assist individuals (young and old), families and small business entrepreneurs to improve their ability to budget and make well-informed financial decisions. The role players bring with them a unique combination of skills which combine education and coaching to bring about a fundamental mind-set and behaviour change.
"Ndima Yam is a Non-Profit organisation registered with the sole purpose of providing budget coaching and financial educational training to the low-income population in communities to enable them to experience a greater degree of financial freedom."
What inspired you to start your company?
Our own lives, backgrounds and unique circumstances inspired us to start this organization. Our own stories, struggles, challenges, successes and achievements inspired us to bring about change and a solution to this social crisis facing out country.
Why should anyone use your service or product?
If we can just imagine a South Africa where people are aware of their financial situation and are financially literate, then that would be the answer as to why someone should use our services. We are not just highlighting a social problem but bringing about a solution to our country’s needs. Our country has a high dependency of 94% on the state social grant, whereas the remaining 6% of the population are financially independent. Every year, South Africa spends more than 4% of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) on social grants (an amount significantly higher than most countries). The issuance of social grants has increased dramatically over the past few years, from an estimated 4-million recipients in 1994 to 16.9-million in 2015. Now is the time to ensure that our youth and adults are informed and equipped to manage their finances.
Our workshops are designed, developed and published by Ndima Yam itself with an ISBN bar-code. The tailor-made workshops and coaching programmes will uncover more on managing how our clients think, feel and act around money. We will work with our clients on their short and long-term goals, develop and review their budgets, formulate action plans and discuss their financial goals. We believe that all South Africans can experience financial freedom. As an organisation our objective is to educate people early enough to avoid them falling into the debt trap. While there are other organisations who offer financial advice and counselling, most of these services are accompanied by the sale of insurance products or the creation of debt. The poorest of the poor do not have access to financial counselling services which are understandable, trustworthy, and do not entail having to enter into some form of transaction which places them further into debt. South Africa is therefore in need of an organisation like Ndima Yam, which can provide these services with no ulterior motives but the stated objective of improving financial literacy and reducing the over indebtedness which is currently plaguing our communities, thereby empowering our communities and increasing their financial awareness.
"Our own stories, struggles, challenges, successes and achievements inspired us to bring about change and a solution to this social crisis facing out country."
Tell us a little about your team
Ndima Yam was formed in October 2013 and registered in 2014 by Pheliswa Nomdatya, Lunga Vusani and Toine Dam based on the shared vision of providing financial education and coaching to people who are have the greatest need. The strengths, skills and passion the role-players share, gave birth to the idea of starting an organisation that would coach and educate the community in budgeting and financial awareness.
Share a little about your entrepreneurial journey. And, do you come from an entrepreneurial background?
I personally grew up with an entrepreneurial mindset. My Mother was a dress-maker and still is today. We used to sell clothes, socks, towels, traditional African prints from an early age. We made our money for our school allowances by selling during the weekends. I've also tried other business ventures but failed. This is the first venture to show success after many trials. When I took studies in Applied Psychology I knew that I wanted to work for myself but had no idea how I'm going to apply my academic knowledge and where it would add value. To work in the community has always been close to my heart. From being a volunteer in different projects, to being involved in church activities. I'm a humanitarian and activist at heart!
"If we can just imagine a South Africa where people are aware of their financial situation and are financially literate, then that would be the answer as to why someone should use our services."
What are your future plans and aspirations for your company?
We aim to take the services of Ndima Yam to other provinces especially in the Eastern Cape. We have in mind to work in the rural communities with women especially in farming. Many women receive funds from the government but are uneducated and unaware how to use them to better their lives for their goals. We want to work with schools in the rural parts of our communities. We want to create jobs for people in the communities who want to be trained as budget coaches and facilitators to empower other people. We aim to have branches in South Africa in different parts of the provinces and spread greater awareness about financial literacy. We want to go to prisons and educate and have workshops about financial literacy. Those that come out and find jobs in the future will be better informed about their personal and financial goals.
What gives you the most satisfaction being an entrepreneur?
To see the change, to bring hope to people, to empower and uplift the next person. That gives me satisfaction because where there's change there's a new beginning of something great.
"Every year, South Africa spends more than 4% of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) on social grants (an amount significantly higher than most countries). Now is the time to ensure that our youth and adults are informed and equipped to manage their finances."
What's the biggest piece of advice you can give to other women looking to start-up?
Know your talents and strengths. Know what you are good at and what your talents are. Utilise your abilities and stay positive. Most of all, just believe!
Contact or follow Ndima Yam
Why LoA loves it….
At LoA, we love those social entrepreneurs who want to make a tangible and positive difference to the lives of others and the communities they live in. In South Africa, there are many social challenges to be addressed, financial education and literacy being just one of them. But as the saying goes, through knowledge comes power, and the team at Ndima Yam are putting power into the hands of those most in need through financial management education and training. --- Melanie Hawken, founder and CEO of Lionesses of Africa