Gaone Mabalane, perseverance embodied

28th March 2018
Gaone Mabalane Source:The Midweek Sun


By Keikantse Lesemela - Reporter

Driven by passion for business and love for children, young entrepreneur, Gaone Mabalane realised that she can create employment by taking care of children. She registered a business in 2014 and started operating a day care centre in February this year through the assistance of Youth Development Fund. Her school, Little Saviours Academy, enrols children from one to six years. It is located in Block 8 Suburb of Gaborone. In an interview with Business Trends, Mabalane said the school is an innovative solution that acts as virtual parents, broadening the children’s skills and enriching each child’s cognitive, social and spiritual development. The school is different from other Pre-Schools as it has combined the national Pre-primary curriculum framework combined with ABC Jesus Loves Me, which focuses on academic development and the Bible.

“My passion is to develop children at a young age, so I have constructed my programmes and learning experiences that will give children endless opportunities to learn and grow in six areas including nurturing creativity, developing lasting life skills, growing a healthy body, making new friends, building brain power and communicating with others,” said Mabalane. She wants to contribute to economic development through education. “I love children and I always want to train them and help them realise their potential at a young age.

Looking at unemployment rate I decided to turn this passion into a business concept,” said Mabalane. Starting up the business was not easy as she had no funds and all financial institutions believed that the business was not viable. She needed more than P200 000 to start-up but she was only funded for P100 000, however, she managed to do other projects including the upgrading of infrastructure. Although several institutions and regulators including Gaborone City Council and Ministry of Youth Empowerment, Sport and Culture Development rejected her, Mabalane was determined to see her business operating so she persisted and never got discouraged. “It was not an easy path for me to arrive at this stage.

I was consistently rejected by youth funders and the city council also refused to grant me the license. I had to go through courts, lost cases and I appealed and finally got approved. Starting up a business is not easy, it takes courage and faith,” she said. Currently, she has enrolled 10 students and employed two people. She will employ up to five teachers when students enrolment increases. The school is licensed to enrol 50 students and has a ratio of 10 students per teacher. School fees are offered at an affordable price of P3600 per term or at an instalment of P1200 every month.

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