At first it was about numbers but now our focus is about quality and impact Click To Tweet

Lebogang Mashigo is a 27-year-old social entrepreneur from the former KwaNdebele region, currently Thembisile Hani, of South Africa. She is the founder and director of Nubreed Company and Music Institute.

She is a YALI (Young African Leaders Initiative Alumni in Business and Entrepreneurship, a Monash South Africa Lead (MSA Lead) fellow and was named the Mail & Guardian’s top 200 Young South Africans 2016. Lebogang is very passionate, brave and believes in her strength and that of others.

She has been nominated twice for the Women Real Architects of Society Awards. Lebogang has also been profiled on Mzansi Insider, On the Spotlight with Ashraf Garda as well as on Kicking Doors with DJ Sbu on CNBC Africa. She Leads Africa contributor, Kutlwano Mokgojwa catches up with her on all things Art, Music and youth empowerment.


What role does Nubreed have in the community and how does it fulfil that role?

Our role is to present platforms for discovering, expressing, empowerment and connecting. We started a just a music project that gave music lessons.

Today we have become more than just a music project. We educate, discover, empower and partner with young people and communities for change.

What effect does empowering the youth with music have? How has that inspired you to venture into the Visual Arts and Life skills?

Coming from a rural area where little is happening to stimulate young people growing up in the region of former KwaNdebele, I didn’t want to change the world, but I understood that young people are gifted and they can express themselves through music, it made sense to start NuBreed the music institute.

We are not changing people but we have inspired young people to be confident, to go after their dreams, to discover opportunities within the music/arts industry. Through workshops and many events, we host, young people, connect from those in the industry and learn from them. Working with young people helped us to discover other talents and needs which propelled us to create other platforms for visual arts, life skill workshops and business workshops.

It is all part of our mission to educate, empower and develop. We now host the biggest annual talent show in June called KwaNdebele Got Talent where we call for auditions and in June young come from all over the region to showcase their talents and compete for a big cash prize and other development opportunities.

Our role is to present platforms for discovering, expressing, empowerment & connecting @NubreedMI Click To Tweet

How has Nubreed been welcomed into the community, what relationships have you formed and how do these relationships help the organisation?

NuBreed is a recognised brand that is associated with youth, Change and Empowerment. We have been welcomed with open arms in the community.

We work with other community structures, we’ve worked with schools, churches and other NGOs. However, we still see room for more networks.

How old is your target market and what socio-economic challenges do they face?

As the music institute, we’ve worked with many young. At first, it was about numbers but now our focus is about quality and impact. So I will say we are growing our impact.

We're not changing people but have inspired young people to go after their dreams Click To Tweet

What kind of syllabus does your organisation follow and how has that helped with your partnership with the University of South Africa?

NuBreed uses the UNISA music syllabus to teach our students, we have UNISA accredited teachers and we do UNISA Music exams twice a year. This enables our students to receive UNISA music certificates and earn university credits.

Your organisation is a non-profit entity, how does that affect your operations in terms of funding and how do you manage the financial pressure?

Funding has been a big challenge. We are not formally funded. We have received donations from individuals now and then. But this has encouraged us to develop our own fundraising programme in-house.

We enter competitions for funds and we are always looking for partnerships. Now we are looking for opportunities to expand. All this is inspired by our need to sustain NuBreed.

What personal lessons have you learnt through your leadership of Nubreed?

Personal lessons: It is important to say no to some ideas.

It is important to say no to some ideas @leewaMashigo Click To Tweet

If you can spend a day in the life of anyone, living or dead, who would it be?

I would really like to be Oprah for a day. I would build art schools in rural areas.


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