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"Laugh at yourself and look on the bright side," says Trailblazer, Kabelo Ncholo.

Kabelo Ncholo, 32, started Yourself Event Management in Johannesburg in 2001, with R350, which he earned as a waiter.

He noticed a good business opportunity in organising matric dances for schools that hired out the restaurant where he worked. He started out using his hospitality industry connections to provide entertainment, a venue, catering and décor for his clients. As Yourself expanded, he started organising and promoting events for universities and clubs.

In 2009, Ncholo found his niche in marketing aimed at consumers in the townships. Now Yourself Management is a marketing agency that offers services to clients such as Nestlé, Cell C and Microsoft. His first major client, Tiger Brands, has been with him since 2010. He loves his work because it enables him to change many lives, including his family’s.

He is now able to support the family who raised him with humble means in Bapong Village in North West province. He also values his relationships with the 20 permanent and 230 contractual staff members of Yourself Management.

Realising that his competitors usually source promoters from universities, Ncholo decided to partner with FET colleges to work with their students.

Now 80% of Yourself’s contractors are FET graduates who initially connected with the company during their studies.