The pandemic has made it a challenge for many businesses across the country to keep their doors open, with the tourism industry being one of the hardest hit sectors over the past 18 months.
But the City of Cape Town in conjunction with various stakeholders, is working to revive tourism, particularly in the township.
On Thursday September 16, the City kicked its first leg of Kasi-style events in Langa where local entrepreneurs got to share what they had to offer.
And on Monday September 20, they visited Khayelitsha where again local entrepreneurs got an opportunity to present their products. With the ease of lockdown levels and summer season upon us, these entrepreneurs are hoping that they will be able to generate some income and revive their businesses.
Ncumisa Ndlakuhlolo who runs Nomsa’s Guest House in Langa, said it has been extremely difficult to keep her business going open during these tough times.
She said it had been her mother’s idea to turn her house into a guest house, but she suffered a stroke before she could realise her dream.
So, Ms Ndlakuhlolo decided to fulfil her mother’s dream and established the guest house in 2008. Two years later, her mom died.
“Covid 19 has knocked the business quite intensively. I used all my savings to keep the business operating because after six months of lockdown last year, the business was literally dead.
“I therefore applied for the government relief but until today I have not received anything. I just couldn’t let my mothers dream vanish like that as result we are still debt,”she said.
Mayco member for economic opportunities and tourism, James Vos, said such initiatives were aimed at reviving this sector while showing off its diversity. He said they wanted to encourage domestic tourism and explore products and services being provided by the local entrepreneurs.
He added that the City would provide businesses with a neighbourhood development training manual in an effort to help SMMEs .
He said tourism played a critical role in creating employment and it was therefore essential that they showed their unwavering support for local entrepreneurs.
Luzuko Mteto who runs Spine Road lifestyle restaurant in Khayelitsha said such initiaves were important as they helped their business build their reputation.
Owner of Jordan Ways of Cooking, Ntlalo Jordan, said he applauded the organisers of the events which helped market their establishments to wider audiences.
Cape Town Tourism chief executive Enver Duminy said they had launched domestic tourism campaigns this month. He said they were targeting local tourists by pin- pointing affordability of products and services within their communities.