VOLUNTEER CONSULTANT

Tafadzwa Timothy Chakaodza

“Transformational – a one of a kind experience”

Tafadzwa is the founder and chairman at Young Minds International Trust, Japan. He obtained a First Class BA (Hons) International Business with Japanese and is an accredited TEFL Instructor. At the age of 18 he founded the Zimbabwe-based charity ‘Young Minds International Trust’ which has to date raised several thousand pounds to empowers youths. During his undergraduate degree he co-founded ‘IFA Ltd.’, an international investment enterprise which successfully raised capital to invest in Kenyan-based young entrepreneurs. His key areas of expertise are Social Enterprise Management, Marketing Strategy and Investment Management."

“I was introduced to the wonderful Claire (Grow Movement CEO) in my final year at Regent's University London. I joined because I am passionate about start-ups and entrepreneurship and, being African myself, I saw no better way to support the African economy than by working with inspirational Grow Movement entrepreneurs”.

Tafadzwa was matched with entrepreneur Lucy Mbota, whose business ‘Lucy's Wedding Decoration’ is based in Kawari, Malawi. Her business provides wedding and events equipment and food services and helps Lucy support her daughter and her elderly mother. Her clients include engaged couples (young and old), the birthday party market and religious group events.

“Lucy is very resourceful and well informed about her market. Our first three sessions really were about building a rapport. I gently questioned her about the business in general, about Lucy herself and about her family who are a very important motivational source for her. I explained a little about myself and the areas I could best be of help. We had about 14 sessions and e-mailed at least twice a week."
 
"Culturally I found the African approach to time management a challenge, but this is something I quickly adapted to and tried to find a balance. Lack of adequate data and poor telecommunications infrastructure posed a challenge but Lucy and I were able to work very successfully with the result that her top-line increased by over 20%, she now has a social media strategy and has formed close strategic alliance partnerships with other local partners."

"I have benefited from an enhanced sense of time management and I find myself much more flexible with regards to embracing cultural differences. I learnt about the events services market in Kenya and other economies which I found very interesting. I have helped a family to have a more financially stable future, and that is a great feeling.”

What would you say to other volunteers thinking about joining Grow Movement?

“Do it! It's a great personal experience where you will learn and as much as you will coach and mentor. The impact you can bring will not only improve the entrepreneur's business but will also enrich their family's life which usually spreads outwards to their community.”

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