Ndalamo’s events company wins big at the 2020 Business Summit
Ndalamo Tshishonga could not have dreamt that her eagerness to plan events for her family and friends could have developed into a thriving career. The 27-year-old, originally from Limpopo, would happily take responsibility for planning baby showers for friends, or floral arrangements for a family wedding. “I soon realised that planning events was in me,” Ndalamo says. “That’s when I decided to create a business out of this passion.” Ndalamo then partnered with a teacher at her son’s school, Kesoe Tladi, who specialises in draping and platters. Together, the two grew K +N Events from strength to strength, culminating with an impressive win – on 31 July, Ndalamo was awarded the top spot at the Afrika Tikkun Services 2020 Business Summit in the Existing Business Category.
Ndalamo’s decision to enter the 2020 Business Summit came as she was pursuing another passion. She is currently studying for her Social Auxiliary Work Certificate at Luxe College in Johannesburg and began her practical training at Afrika Tikkun Uthando Centre. In December 2019, Ndalamo was accepted onto the Youth Employment Service programme and began working with Uthando’s 360 Social Support Services. “I’m a bubbly person yes, but the truth is that I can be quite shy and sometimes not have much confidence,” Ndalamo, referring to her initial feelings when she saw and considered the advert about the Business Summit. “Then I thought to myself that I’d give it try. I didn’t really take it too seriously at first. And I certainly didn’t think I would get that far.”
Although Ndalamo was, like her nine other competitors on the day, quite nervous, she began to enjoy the experience once she stood in front the adjudicators to sell her company. “It was flowing,” she recalled. “I didn’t even have to use my notes. I made up my mind that the judges were going to remember me.” Her natural flair for engaging with people simply kicked in and Ndalamo drew on the successes of K + N Events to date. The company caters for both small and large events and even catered Uthando’s CDP graduation in 2019. Most recently and as a result of the lockdown, the owners saw the need for innovation and as a result, created a new service, – romantic set-ups. “We come to your house and set up for two, the candles, flowers, wine and platters,” she explains. “But it’s not just for couples, people request it for friends and birthdays as well.”
Because of her win, Ndalamo now has a place on courses at Udemy and Startup School which is certain to improve her business and entrepreneurial skills. She’s also looking forward to the one-on-one mentorship support. “I was so surprised and happy when I won, I just couldn’t believe that I really did it,” she recalls. “I know the prizes will enhance my business.” She is extremely grateful for the role that Afrika Tikkun has played in her life, not only for assisting her to pursue her love of social work but also to have presented this unexpected but deeply rewarding entrepreneurial opportunity.