BIOGRAPHY

SIVIWE MBANDA

 

I was born in 1983 in Umtata, not too far from Nelson Mandela’s birthplace, Qunu. I had a happy childhood in the region called Transkei as the youngest of four children. I was born into a Xhosa-speaking community, a community with strong values, traditions and customs.

I went to primary school in Umtata and in 2001 I moved with my family to Langa, the oldest of Cape Town’s townships. My father worked for a large state-owned corporation called Transnet and my family lived in the Transnet hostels in Langa. I completed by schooling here and then enrolled for a Business Management course at the Cape College in downtown Cape Town.

After completing my studies, I ventured into the building sector until I realised my interests lay with people, rather than bricks and mortar. After completing a tourist guiding course, I started guiding and eventually met up with Garth and Rob in 2007. Together, we started Vamos in 2010. Vamos means “Let’s Go!” in Spanish.

In 2007 I started the Happy Feet Youth Project. Today it is registered as a Non Profit Organisation (NPO 082080). Our goal is to remove young township kids from the influence of gangsterism and drugs and to give them meaning and comradeship in their lives whilst instilling strong values.