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Sihle Hlophe talks about what led her to the entrepreneurial space and about Passion Seed Communications (PSC), which is a beneficiary of the Vodacom-established Innovator Trust.
I have always wanted to use filmmaking as a tool for social change, especially for women and other marginalised groups. This motivated me to become an entrepreneur at the age of 21. Imparting skills and creating employment for the youth and female technicians has always been at the top of my agenda. Entrepreneurship allows me to achieve these goals while doing what I love most – telling stories.
PSC is a for-profit social enterprise that produces social impact films and campaigns for underserved community members. We create short- and long-form fiction and non-fiction content in African languages. Our work has been exhibited in over 15 countries. On an annual basis, the company creates employment opportunities for 10 to 15 independent contractors.
The Innovator Trust has provided me with an invaluable opportunity by fund my studies at the Gordon Institute of Business Science where I am currently enrolled in the Social Entrepreneurship Programme (SEP). The SEP is a multi-disciplinary training programme that equips participants with the necessary skills to run a business-savvy, socially conscious organisation.
Like everything in life, entrepreneurship has its highs and lows, but it is a very fulfilling journey because it allows you to make money by pursuing your passion. To other budding entrepreneurs, I say stay low and keep firing. Look after yourself because mental health is key. Most importantly, hold on to the belief that it will pay off in the end. In everything you do ask yourself: ‘How can this business activity benefit society?’