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Bright Sigonyela

Daughters: 7 & 5 years, single

Crossroads

TAB changed my life, because I was just one of the guys in the location. I was not doing nothing, just sit at home, walking around, sometimes getting a piece job but it was not helping. Since I started here, I see my life is changing. If you can see my house, there has been a lot of improvements. I’m supporting my family and my children. One of them is starting Grade R, the second is in the crèche and I’m affording to pay the bills for school.

I started at TAB in 2018. When I heard about it in 2017, I was struggling. My life was so bad. I saw the advert on Facebook and asked a lady from the group, where is this place? What is the place, because I am becoming interested in this ad? I asked one of my friends for airtime and called and they said I must come on the open day.

In my mind I thought I would get a job. When I come here, they explain about starting a business. I started to tell myself, let me see what’s going to happen with this place. Let me put my heart into this, let me not lose the hope. I have been working for so many years and I have nothing. Maybe this is a way of changing. I finished my two years, and my life was changed.

Even my friends say, your family is happy about you because you always have money in your pocket. Looking for job, always giving out your CV and hearing nothing, now I don’t do that. I work for myself. I come to TAB, then tomorrow I’m at my shop and I sell my stuff. At TAB we buy the broken stuff and then we fix it. I put it on Facebook Marketplace, and I go to deliver to customers. I make sure the customer tests it and is happy with it. I am always fixing my stuff. If customers come, I do a demonstration for them, I show them how to work my stuff. If they call for a microwave, I rather go to the customer’s house and fix it in front of you. I want to build trust with my customers.

I learn to fix from TAB, I didn’t know how to fix before. I am very good now. In my mind when I started, I didn’t have the hope that I would finish. The more time was going on, I thought if I leave this place no one is going to put the bread on the table for me, this is my opportunity. There was a doubt, but I tell myself let me not to doubt.

My mind became broad at TAB. I stopped thinking that there is no future if you don’t have a job. It’s better to work for yourself. I am the one now. My friends, they will tell you about me, even if I’m not there. I used to borrow the money all the time, now they borrow from me. Especially my family, they rather borrow from me. We help each other in the family.  I’m saving my money, I have too much stokvel now. I even I have savings for daughters so that they can get something when I’m not here.

They always say there is no life if you don’t go to the tertiary. If you are not educated people don’t take you seriously. Now people are looking at me and they can see that I make a success. I am proud as I know I can make money for myself. I don’t need anything from people, I fix the things with my own hands. I can do anything.