Upliftment begins with education. This is the maxim by which Mahlogonolo Phahlamohlaka lives her life and drives her career.
She is the founder of the Help Matriculate Centre, an organisation that upskills young residents in Tsimanyane Circuit, Limpopo Province. Her proudest moments in the organisation have come from hosting career days for children in rural areas who have struggled in school, and offering continued support to the learners who need it most.
In an area which teachers are notoriously underpaid and overworked, her efforts have not gone unnoticed.
“Since the inception of the career days, paired with coaching, mentoring, and tutoring, teachers have given good feedback in that there has been quite an improvement in the performance of the kids,” says Phahlamohlaka.
“On average, schools increased their university intake by 200% in the first two years of our launching, and schools have also improved with overall matric performance. We have schools now being able to achieve more than an 80% pass rate.”
By increasing literacy rates and instilling basic skills in learners from a young age, Phahlamohlaka believes she can facilitate job creation in the community. Her dream, in fact, is to help to create 100 jobs over the next five years.
She is certainly leading by example: she has pivoted to a number of different industries and has learned to thrive in all of them. Having started her career as a geologist, she moved on to management consulting and is now happily working in insurance.