The story of Carol Madumo is a classic testament of the old Chinese proverb "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime". The Ekurhuleni Grant-in-Aid recipient is poised to finally launch her cooking school at the O.R Tambo Precinct in Wattville after almost 10 years of operating a catering business, and giving random one-day training sessions to impart knowledge to fledgling cooks. Thanks to the City's financial boost through the Grant-in-Aid scheme, Madumo's business will take off for greater heights and her passion to train others will be sustainably realised.
The financial support granted to Madumo will equip her to now train aspiring chefs on food handling at her newly launched Carol Madumo Project (CMP) Catering School.
"I have been running training workshops but always had a dream to open my own cooking school and thanks to the funding from Ekurhuleni, I now have the financial muscle to plough back to the community with the hope that they too will impart the knowledge they get to other aspiring chefs," Madumo said.
CMP Catering School that will be operating from the O.R Tambo Precinct in Wattville will start with training eight hospitality entrepreneurs who are already in the food business to sharpen the skills they already possess.
Madumo used to recruit young cooks with potential from her community and link them with the South African Chiefs Association. One of her recruits was ultimately trained in Seychelles and will also be assisting at the cooking school.
The three-month training programme will include health hygiene, safety and security, table preparation, serving customers and development of a business model. They will also be taught how to be creative in finding business opportunities in their communities.
After the training programme, the apprentices will not walk away with just an accredited catering certificate, but will leave as all-rounder culinary practitioners who have been trained in multiple areas of hospitality. In addition, the CMP Cooking School graduates will receive chef's uniforms as well as user-friendly mobile food carts that go with a gas cylinder, cooler box, pizza oven, water bucket, food warmer and fire extinguisher compartment.
Madumo further stated that she realised she could not achieve a feat of this magnitude without the assistance of a big institution such as the City. That was so because she did not only want to open a hospitality school, but she also wanted to advance other local entrepreneurs by giving them a skill they can use for a life time, she said.
Advising others in her situation, she said, "Let government find you working and not folding your arms and complaining that it is not doing anything to assist you. Go out there and find opportunities but let them find you already with a plan."
The Ekurhuleni Grant-in-Aid is awarded to institutions or organisations within the boundaries of the City of Ekurhuleni that need funding to uplift their communities in various ways, including promoting socio-economic participation, particularly by the previously disadvantaged persons. Another factor for granting of the Grant-in-Aid is creation of sustainable jobs and skills development in the following priority areas:
- Sports, recreation, arts and culture and social cohesion
- Local economic development and sustainable job creation
- Social development
The opening for formal applications will be announced through notices at all Customer Care Centres and the Grant-in-Aid Support office at the City's Head Office in Germiston.
NB: The municipality reserves the right to withhold funding to organisations or bodies that have been funded before.