If you happened to be at the Southern Sun Elangeni Hotel in Durban during the DSI-THENSA Five-Day Entrepreneurship Programme last October, you would have heard the sound of one word echoing through the corridors: “Umbaalaaabaalaaa”. The catchy name belongs to Mbuso Ngcongo, a Bachelor of Computer Science student from the University of South Africa (UNISA) whose business, UMbalabala, is an educational toolkit that uses pedagogical methods to advance learning for those at a foundational level of schooling.

Ngcongo is just as passionate about enhancing literacy amongst South Africa’s most vulnerable communities as he is about growing UMbalabala. He keeps a constant lookout for funding and networking opportunities that will better his business, all while maintaining that optimistic, helpful and approachable demeanour that made him popular with other students. Having recently accepted a place into the HP Cambridge Partnership for Education EdTech Fellowship, he believes that this exciting new venture will build upon his existing knowledge, expose him to novel experiences and assist him in scaling UMbalabala to the highest of heights.

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