Change is in your pocket

The Big Issue is a socially responsible non-profit organisation that enables willing unemployed and marginalised adults to take responsibility for their own lives through a developmental employment programme.
PITCH:  Cavendish Square, Claremont
AGE:  51


What’s the best place you’ve ever been?
I went on a safari with The Big Issue last year and really enjoyed seeing all the animals. It was a dream come true.

What’s your favourite TV show?
I don’t get to watch TV… I’m a mom [laughs].

How do you relax after a stressful day?
I pour a cup of tea and just [let myself] be still in front of God.

Nozuko Mabohlo

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Nozuko Mabohlo is an interesting woman. While not quite a traditional healer yet, she looks forward to becoming one later this year, when she is baptised and becomes a “prophet”. When she speaks about her passion for people, her eyes light up and a smile floods her face.

Nozuko doesn’t speak English very well, but the way she uses her hands and body to communicate her passion for her community and her calling makes it easy to understand how close to her heart she holds them both. We found out a bit more about her, and why you should pay her a visit when you’re next in Claremont.

I am a really old vendor because I joined The Big Issue about 10 years ago. Before joining The Big Issue, I worked at a factory in the Eastern Cape. When it shut down, I decided to move to Cape Town because it was the thing to do if you were unemployed.

My neighbour had sold the magazine and I thought that I could, too. I love to talk and that’s why I thought I would be perfect for the job. To be quite honest, sales haven’t been great lately because my mind has been focused on preparing for the baptism.

[The baptism] will take place in December this year. I am looking forward to becoming a prophet and being able to help people in my community. Traditional healers sometimes get a lot of criticism, but I am not interested in any illegal practices. I believe in helping people spiritually and listening to their problems, as well as praying for them. I don’t give any medication.

I am really excited [for the baptism]. I think about it constantly. I should think about it a little less as it is affecting my sales. I am hoping that being in the magazine will help boost my sales.

Selling the magazine is fun, but it is not my passion. I like that I get to meet so many people from all over the world, young and old… but my passion is helping people. I get to do that after hours, which is nice.

I must thank The Big Issue for helping me put food on the table. The customers and all of the staff have shown me such love. It makes me want to give back to the community, even if it’s just by lending an ear to listen to a problem or two. The little things make a big difference.

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