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Local innovation takes first place at SAB foundation Social Innovation and Disability Empowerment Awards

A local innovation that provides affordable housing within low income communities won first place at the prestigious SAB Foundation Social Innovation and Disability Empowerment Awards. Through the awards, the SAB Foundation finds, supports and scales social innovations that demonstrate a sustainable business model while solving a critical social problem.

 Based in Soweto, Hustlenomics is an affordable housing solution that gives families who have informal backyard shacks the opportunity to build durable structures in their place. Using alternative building technology, including interlocking bricks made from recycled materials, the new structures are built at no cost to the owners. The buildings are financed using an innovative shared-home financing model, where rental income generated from the completed structure is used to buy back portions of the property until full ownership is achieved.

 Founder Nhlanhla Ndovu says, “With the grant funding we received from the SAB Foundation we would like to buy equipment for the business including a truck and a bigger machine that can manufacture up to 4 500 bricks a day.”

 This will form part of the businesses expansion and Nhlandla believes that in three to five years he will employ up to 50 women and youth and build up to three new houses a month.

 Ntandokazi Nodada, SAB Foundation Social Innovation Project Manager, said: “The Social Innovation and Disability Empowerment awards are aimed at innovators, entrepreneurs, institutions and enterprises with prototypes or early-stage businesses that solve a social problem. By improving living conditions within low income communities, as well as creating employment and income generation opportunities, Hustlenomics is exactly the type of innovation we aim to promote through the awards.”

To date, the SAB Foundation has committed over R75 million towards promoting social innovation and supported 163 businesses that solve social issues and provide solutions to people with disabilities.


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