Jean-Pierre Mouries is definitely one of Vision AfriKa Vlottenburg’s success stories.
He is currently 18 months into a three-year marketing course at Boland College in Stellenbosch and is busy planning to set up an exciting new tourism business called Vin Adventure. To top it off, he is also working as a part-time sales consultant at Tele Communications in Somerset West.
We speak to Jean-Pierre about his background, his vision for the future and how Vision AfriKa has helped get him there:
Q. Tell us a bit about yourself.
A. I grew up in Vlottenburg on a wine farm called Morgenster, which is about 8km outside of Stellenbosch. I lived there with my family for the first 17 years of my life, but now live in Eerste Rivier, which is a small town about halfway between Stellenbosch and Cape Town.
Q. What are your plans for the future?
A. I am in the process of setting up a company called Vin Adventure, after entering and winning a competition for young entrepreneurs last year – my first year of studying marketing at Boland College.
The competition involved writing a detailed business plan for a proposed new tourism venture covering Stellenbosch and the surrounding area, and I won one of the prizes for ‘Best Business Concept’.
The aim of the initiative is to offer tourists and locals bicycle tours of everything from local museums to wine farms and restaurants – and I expect to receive my award of five new bicycles later this month, which will help to get my idea off the ground.
After that, I intend to try and get various business and investment partners on board to help me with the necessary funding and skills.
Another goal is to employ unskilled workers from the Vlottenburg community in which I grew up. The idea is to train them up so that eventually they can run the initiative themselves as it’s important to me to be able to give back to the community that raised me.
Q. How has Vision AfriKa helped you to get where you are today?
A. When Vision AfriKa first came to my local school, Stellenzicht High School, to recruit new learners, it was the idea of camps and outings that grabbed my attention most as I hadn’t ever had the opportunity to go on excursions like that.
I was initially a bit reticent about joining the programme though in case the other kids at school bullied me. But in the end, I screwed up my courage and went for it.
There were definitely times when I felt like giving up on my dreams, but Vision AfriKa gave me the necessary resources to help make sound decisions and think critically about my future.
It also helped me to see that without school and/or tertiary education, there was no way that I could rise above my current circumstances. But I know now that I can do it.
So I thank Vision AfriKa for everything it has done for me, but I thank God even more for blessing me with the wonderful opportunities in life that I have received.
For more info about the Vision V Branch contact [email protected]
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