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Media Centre  |  Youth Today

SayNO!to drugs

5 August 2015

D
rugs are highly addictive and the abuse of these substances has a very serious impact on the mind and body.
Long-term drug abuse will have the following devastating effects on your body:

Dagga
Marijuana blocks the messages going to your brain and alters your perceptions and emotions, vision, hearing and coordination.

Long term effects
• Reduced ability to perform tasks that need concentration and coordination, such as driving.
• Reduced short-term memory.
• Decreased testosterone levels that cause a lower sperm count, and results in difficulty to having children.
• A mental dependence on the drug, which can lead to taking more of the drug to get the same effect.
• Enhanced cancer risk.

Cigarettes
Cigarettes are highly addictive and smoking is perhaps the most preventable cause of disease and premature death.

Long term effects
• Deteriorating sense of smell and taste
• Frequent colds and Smoker’s cough
• Ulcers, chronic bronchitis and emphysema
• Increase in blood pressure
• Heart disease
• Cancer of the mouth, throat, lungs and pancreas

Cocaine and Crack
Cocaine and Crack are highly addictive and addiction can become so strong that all aspects of a user’s life are dominated.

Long term effects
• Heart attacks, strokes, and lung failure
• Hepatitis or AIDS through shared needles
• Brain seizures
• Reduction of the body’s ability to fight infection
• Loss of interest in food or sex confusion, anxiety and depression.

Vincent Phiri from the Dusty streets of Ebony Park a township between midrand and Tembisa was unemployed opted to start a business rather than resort to crime.

Q: Can you kindly tell us about yourself?
I grew up in a village called Mzinti in Mpumalanga, and I came to Johannesburg in 2001 to further my studies. l did a course in Hospitality Management merging it with Customer Service. l got employed by different hotels in and out of Johannesburg but when I lost my job I thought to myself that I needed to do something to earn a living and that’s when I started my business .

Q: Can you please give us an insight into your business, when it started and what the inspiration behind it was?
The concept was received in the year 2012, I had many business ideas that I wanted to pursue then. I thought of opening a food spot, car wash and selling vegetables but I decided it would be wiser to opt for something that is not common in the neighbourhood and that is how the computer business came into being. This business has a great future seeing that almost everything is now technology based.

Q: Who is your inspiration and
why that person?
My mother is the inspiration behind whatever I do because as much as my father Dad passed away February this year, but to me he passed on long time ago because he abandoned me when I was four years old.
I was raised by a single mother and we were six siblings in the family but she kept on inspiring us to be better and believe in ourselves so that made me look up to her.

Q: In your Introduction you said that you studied Hospitality but now that you are a business man would you like to study Business management and maybe one day have your MBA?
Yes of course, there are so many business ideas that I am working on right now and that’s why the company was registered as a business empire which means it will be a collection of many businesses. I might start a business that will include hospitality, probably a lodge or bed & breakfast in the township. I don’t want to leave this place because everything began here and I have to develop my township.

Q: You started out with an internet café and you are now merging it with a Driving school, how are you coping with everything seeing as everything needs your attention?
I am coping because this business is managed by my colleague who is always here and manages everything. If there’s a need or we have a technical problem or anything thats need my attention, she tends to it thus we work well together.

Q: Looking at your business now, where do you see it in five or four years down
the line?
This business will give birth to many businesses like I mentioned earlier, I am thinking of opening a laundry, spare parts shop for cars and buying a bigger truck for the driving school.

Q: A lot of young people are unemployed and most of them resort to crime, how did you survive that and what would you say to that young person waiting for the government to create jobs for them?

I decided to earn a living in a decent manner because I don’t want to end up in prison. I had to start from scratch and even though I may not be making much money from this yet however I am making a decent living so the advice I would give is that everyone has to start somewhere and the reason why most of the people don’t want to start low is because they are proud. It’s important to remember that anything that you see today started in smaller portions and was developed to bigger things.

Q: South Africa recently has celebrated more than 20 years of democracy. From the black business man’s perspective point of view, do you think there are still inequalities?
Yes, the inequalities are still there because the challenge we face especially us black people is access to business funding.

Most of the time when you approach the bank to ask for a loan they ask for many things that we don’t have, so as a black person you are left to fend for your own funding. The main challenges are access to funding as well as breaking into the market where white people are dominating.

Q: Is this a family business or job creation for the community?
It is both because the perosn who works with me is from this community and of course I am the sole owner of the business but I have managed to create jobs for the community as well.

Q: How long has this place been
in existence?
It started in January 2012 so this is our third year running.

By Kuviwe Rakhoase and Zama Nkosi.

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