Mathapelo Ngaka-Mtati

Monkeybiz South Africa

What does your company do?

Monkeybiz is a non-profit organization dedicated to empowering South African women from marginalized communities through the art of beadwork. Founded in 2000, Monkeybiz provides income opportunities and skills training to over 250 bead artists, predominantly women from townships in Cape Town. These artisans craft vibrant and intricate beadwork, ranging from traditional African designs to contemporary art pieces, which are sold locally and internationally. Through their work, Monkeybiz not only preserves the rich cultural heritage of beadwork but also fosters economic independence and community development among its participants.

What is your biggest success?

Our greatest achievement would be the sustainability of our project, of keeping traditional African art alive and that we are capable of supporting and empowering hundreds of people. We have brought their art to many countries globally and have had exhibitions in some of the top locations around the world.

What has been your biggest hurdle?

Our biggest hurdle would be funding, we are always in need of funding for our materials.