An entrepreneur from Welkom, Free State has used the lockdown period to teach people in her community how to make rugs and earn a living. Before the lockdown, she distributed rugs nationally and outside SA.
Reitumetse Molapo learnt the art of making rugs in 2017 while on a visit to Tanzania, where she had to think on her feet about how to earn an income when her business wasn’t doing well. That’s when the idea of sharing her rug-making skill with other people came to her.
She recalled how on her visit to Tanzania she saw people on the streets making different types of things with their hands. “Some were making shoes, belts, clothes and some rugs. The nicest part about this skill is that you don’t have to go to school to do it,” said Molapo. From there she learned the skill and started making and selling rugs.
Molapo advertised her rug-making lessons on social media and through flyers. Soon people from as far as Bloemfontein were showing an interest and she would go to their homes to teach them how to make rugs. To date, she s has trained more than 1,000 people, charging R600 a person for the lessons. She hopes to grow her business in two years’ time so she can own a mat factory and deliver to big stores.