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From a struggling part-time gardener to running a successful business : Josiah Morake's success story


Unemployment creates real trauma and stress

Josiah Morake, from Ivory Park in Midrand, was a part-time gardener. He says, “I worked for different people with no stable income, which put a strain on me. The money was not enough. I had to wake up very early in a dangerous township and face the daily possibility of being robbed. I had three children and a wife that I needed to support. I was stressed out and struggling to deal with the difficult situation I was in.”

Repair programme as a way out

When Morake was younger he had worked for someone selling things door-to-door, so he

had some selling experience. “I tried selling for myself but I didn’t know how to manage my

money and so it was not a success. When I heard about Taking Care of Business’ (TCB)

Repair programme, I knew this was my way out. In 2022, I applied and started that year,”

says Morake.

Never too old to learn

“At 49 years old, I was excited to start learning the skills I needed to run a successful

business and fix electrical appliances. It wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be. I found it

challenging being out of my comfort zone and having to learn all these new things. I never

thought that one day I would be able to fix appliances. But today I can – and I have a good

business,” he says.

I’m happy and my customers are happy

“I’m proud to be in a programme at TCB that uses waste for good. Not everything belongs in

the dump, there are so many items that can be fixed rather than being thrown away. At TCB

we de-brand and repair items and then sell them to our customers at a cheaper price.

People in my community are happy because they get these products at a bargain,” he says.

Holistic learning: A business needs more than just sales, it needs good management

“Since being at TCB my life has changed for the better because now I'm my own boss and I

know how to run a business successfully with the skills that I’ve learnt. I am a responsible

person and I'm able to take my business to a higher level. TCB has taught me to categorise

my expenses into personal and business expenses and I record all my expenses so I know

exactly what I spend.

“I’ve been able to work on my personal well-being through the life skills I learnt and the

mentoring I got at TCB. I’m now a better person, capable of handling a difficult situation,

something I previously struggled with,” says Morake. “What stands out for me is the part of

the programme that transforms participants into better human beings. When people are

empowered they can change their circumstances from poverty to success – like I did.”

Your future can be so much more than your current circumstances

Morake sells his repaired appliances in his neighbourhood, at churches on Sundays and

through social networks. “I focus on where people gather in numbers and where my items

are needed. Knowing my target audience is important,” he says.

“My dream is to own more than my one business and I also want to run a food outlet and

later own a franchise,” he says. “My advice to others starting out in their businesses is that

they should learn to finish what they start, never quit no matter the circumstances and be

passionate about what you are doing.”


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