Case Story: Kondwani Majiyaheni
Based in Lilongwe Area 23, Kondwani Majiyaheni is a 33 year old man who originally comes from Gambura village in Traditional Authority Katumbi in Rumphi district.
He is one of the graduates from DAPP Mikolongwe Vocational School who was trained in Welding and Fabrication course in 2011. Having sat for his Malawi School Certificate of Education, Majiyaheni was living in his home district where he said he used to practice subsistence farming and the returns were going straight to alcohol drinking in the local beer halls.
“I was just staying home after leaving secondary school and I had no idea what I will be doing until an opportunity came that UNICEF was looking for youth to support with training in Vocational training and I was one of the 44 beneficiaries. At DAPP Mikolongwe we learnt a number of things about welding and fabrication which included producing metal products like windows and door frames. With time and practice one is able to apply the knowledge and perfect the art.
After the training at Mikolongwe which was for six months, I joined a welding shop in Likuni township in Lilongwe where I was able to gain experience and because I had received start up tools I was to establish my businesses in less than 2 months,” he added.
Through his skills set, Majiyaheni is able to support himself and his family. Married with two children, he said he is able to pay school fees for his children and nephews.
“I bought land and constructed a house, I also managed to build and set up groceries shops back in the village through which my parents and relatives are able to support themselves from the returns,” he added.
Apart from the welding business, Mr Kondwani Majiyaheni said he has expanded his businesses to open a Liquor shop in Area 23 Township. Monthly, he is able to realize a profit of 150 thousand kwacha and that is considering that business hasn’t been constant with the coming of the coronavirus that contributed to a number of factors and lowered demand for products.
He advices his fellow youth to exercise patience, persistent and appreciate the opportunities and challenges that are in running businesses. During his operations in Area 23, he said he has been able to work with 9 young men that he has trained and have grown from his business to establish their own businesses who are originally from his home district of Rumphi. Going forward he said he will be expanding his business to have a wide range of steel products like steel furniture.
Kondwani Majiyaheni operates a business that is registered and contributes to the growing Malawi’s economy through tax paying.