An inspirational South African entrepreneur who has never been given the chance to truly excel, has started a blooming business on a street corner…

 

“I have a name” is an incredible photo series showcasing everyday South Africans in the most phenomenal way. Proudly South African… one story at a time.

The stories are told by the incredible South Africans… raw & unedited. It’s a showcase of humanness, a reminder that behind every face, is a name.

Meet Fani… an incredible South African sharing Seeds if hope.

In honour of gardening day on October 9th….let me introduce you to Fani Ketso.

What makes Fani stand out on the street is a sign around his neck boasting cute colourful cartoon pictures of vegetables and flowers. He shows me a plastic tub with little plastic bags of neatly organized seeds which he sells to motorists for R5.

“I used to beg at the traffic lights with a plastic bag for rubbish. Then a white woman singled me out and said that she would help me. She made me a sign and brought me seed packets to sell. Every week she comes and gives me more packets. I am so thankful. My life is better now because people buy the seeds and also give me piece jobs now and then.”

I ask Fani where he lives.

“In a tent, at the corner of William Nicol and Main…at the craft market where the metal animals, and beaded animals are sold”

“You live there?” I ask in amazement, ” For how long have you lived there?

“3 years…” he replies ”

There are many people that live there in tents, we go to the petrol stations for water and to use the toilets.”
Fani carries a seed mix of beetroot, cabbage, spinach, garden peas, pumpkin, parsley, marigold, carrot, bean runners, keel, and onions.

The little card in each packet has a cartoon of the vegetable or flower as well as ideal planting time, where it grows best , and how to space the seeds. On the back it reads

“My name is Fani Ketso, I’m available for painting, gardening, and mowing the lawn in Randburg, Bryanston, Rivonia and Fourways…”

Fani’s number is 0780795614

How can you help:

  1. Help support Fani by buying his seeds
  2. Do you need a gardener or an extra pair of hands in the garden?
  3. Do you have a live in gardening position available? 3 years in a tent… that’s no holiday!

Fani speaks Sotho, I asked a kind petrol attendant to help with some translation. Fani also uses whatsapp if you want to arrange for him to come to your house.

fani-ketso-seeds-of-hope-2


“I Have A Name” is a space where an anonymous photographer (we’ll call her J) is taking photos of everyday South Africans to showcase their incredible stories.

How do we bridge the great South African divides? Black vs white, young vs old, rich vs poor, men vs women? The divides that keep us from making eye contact with the beggar standing on the street corner, or the stranger in the lift.

CS Lewis said, “There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilizations – these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub and exploit – immortal horrors or everlasting splendors. This does not mean that we are to be perpetually solemn. We must play. But our merriment must be of that kind (and it is, in fact, the merriest kind) which exists between people who have, from the outset, taken each other seriously – no flippancy, no superiority, no presumption.”

Come with me on a journey…the stories and names behind the faces of everyday South Africans living their life in your neighbourhood, on your streets.

I think you will discover that we have a lot in common.

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About the Author

Brent Lindeque is the founder and editor in charge at Good Things Guy.

Recognised as one of the Mail and Guardian’s Top 200 Young South African’s as well as a Primedia LeadSA Hero, Brent is a change maker, thought leader, radio host, foodie, vlogger, writer and all round good guy.

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