Luvuyo Mandela is a Social Entrepreneur working on developing an education fund and consulting product to service the development needs of South Africa. Luvuyo is putting his learnings from the Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) industry and applying them developing responsible, manageable and sustainable interventions to enhance corporate social responsibility solutions.
My Definition Of Success | Success is one day looking back and being proud to have been brave enough to try changing people’s lives! Working on youth empowerment and development in our unreached and under serviced communities is critical to moving the developing world into the prosperous future we so desperately deserve. At first my definition hinged on achieving this massive feat completely, but I think/hope I will be happy to have been one of many catalysts in making the world take our township and rural communities seriously. People cannot be reduced to a tool that powers economies, but we need to start actively including these communities as active participants that can and will grow our world economies.
I Am Driven By | I am driven by the idea that things do not have to be this way. It is important to try change things for the better no matter how ridiculous everyone else thinks your efforts are. It is not easy and most the time it is not even fun, but the idea that others have achieved more under conditions much more severe than institutional descent keeps me focused on one day succeeding. I look forward to the day when all South Africans sincerely have equal opportunity. Our Constitution makes this fact in principle, but principled beliefs unfortunately do not materialise in reality. Making equal opportunity a reality will go a long way to significantly reducing the many social ills our media continues to bombard us with.
A Key Talent | Occasional introspection is a strength I try cultivate whenever I remember to. It is important to be a constructive critic of your own actions. I can always improve and it is important to strike a healthy balance between working to enhance strengths and being too hard on myself. I am always working on that tricky balancing act. We all have various tools that need sharpening but better than always sharpening them is to understand when they are sharp enough to be effective. Being honest with myself also means reminding myself the importance of reaching back to the lessons shared by my parents and other elders. I may not hear them when speak, but being able to reach back and accept advise for what it is makes a world of difference on how far down one goes down a path built on blind tunnel vision.
Resources I Use To Stay Inspired | I have been lucky enough to find strange comfort in disruptive reading. I admittedly was never good with books – short attention span or could never find something engaging enough – but I have recently been drawn to material about changing how we view ourselves in relation to the world. I came across The Four Hour Work Week by Timothy Ferriss and I have been working to unravel societal constraints since. I seem to resonate with material like The Secret, The Four Agreements and Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid a lot easier since making my way through The Four Hour Work Week. Acting now and growing your own world-view and passion is the main take home from most the books I read with others being a tool-kit for making these efforts a reality.
My Future Dreams And Ambitions | I want to play a part in empowering and developing the youth of South Africa’s township and rural communities. I hope to move onto other countries that struggle to connect with the many unreached and under-serviced communities within their boarder; or, at the very least build a foundation and a framework to make it possible for the next generation to build sincere cross-boarder relationships.
On Inspiring Others | I believe you find, motive, and keep great people walking along with you by speaking honestly about your goals and how you look to achieve them. This will give people the space to decide if yours is a journey they look add value to and will help redirect you whenever you go astray.
The Meaning Of Life | I believe the meaning of life is finding your purpose and living it passionately. How one passionately lives their purpose will mature and grow as one continues to interrogate how they manifest it. Most of us will be clumsy and somewhat foolhardy with how we go about it, but time will refine how we express our meaning, making it more palatable to others and attracting those who can and will help us live our purpose.
The Best Advice I’ve Received | Best advice I received was to think for myself, ask questions and stop hiding. Society teaches us to play by the rules and not to make ripples in the ‘tranquil’ status quo all around us. We are never to break the surface and if we by some human fault we desperately need to breathe, we must take care to do so quietly. Fitting into society’s mold means never taking decisions, living a life of constantly questioning yourself and being invisible. Socrates speaks extensively about the societal ills born of living an unexamined life and accepting un-tethered truths.
I Am Inspired By | “To be human is to be flawed.” I stopped seeking out role models the moment I made sense of this obvious fact. None of us are completely perfect. We do however, have glimpses of perfection and these are the traits I collect from inspiring people who have been bold enough to share them.
The Legacy I Would Like To Leave | Making a significant contribution to growing a culture of young people pursing Social Entrepreneurship as a viable career option. The current model has people amassing large amounts of money by as close to any means as possible followed by “giving back” when they have retired. Why wait? Why spend your best a most energetic years building someone else’s dream only for them to price your efforts and what you are worth? Then only at the end, and only if you are lucky, will you get the opportunity to dedicate yourself to the work you always wanted to do. We spend so much time rising and falling in the efforts of furthering causes that do not move us, I hope to help build a generation that can and will take the risk of working to improve society and be rewarded for it. It is important to be entrepreneurial about impacting the world, because it is sadly the one way of building sustainability into the ethos of changing people’s lives for the better.