Musa Maluleka won the Best Student Enterprise earlier this year and was inspired to use his business to give back during lockdown.
Pretoria, South Africa (04 December 2020) – Growing up in Atteridgeville, Pretoria, Musa Maluleka knows the struggles of playing soccer on gravel. Years of boot damage led him to innovate a pair of soccer boots that earned him a big win!
Musa developed a sturdy pair of soccer boots that have much larger studs which can withstand the gravel pitches. He did it because he noticed his friends stopped playing when their boots broke, they turned to drugs and hanging out on the streets.
When Musa started researching, he found that many shoe manufacturers were not able to assist him. He ended up working with a Chinese manufacturer to develop his idea.
Once Musa had the physical boots in his hands, he knew he could do anything! Musa set out to create an affordable boot that would be perfect for township soccer pitches which are often made from gravel. He launched his business, calling it Disktjie. Today, the boots are R700.00 and can be delivered anywhere in South Africa, showing that Musa was serious about creating something for his fellow township soccer lovers.
Musa has gone on to win a few awards for his innovation. During 2019, Musa won an award at the Entrepreneurship Development in Higher Education programme award ceremony. He then went on to win the award for the best student enterprise in South Africa for 2020.
“On my journey, I took some time and immersed myself in the lives of the young kids and soccer players in the townships visiting their homes, and I realized the problems of being unable to afford a pair of boots were rooted in deeper social problems, with the families expressing being worried about where the next meal is going to come from.
It was a painful yet humbling experience because even through the dire circumstances these kids and young players face, they still wear a smile on their face and play their hearts out with passion on the soccer fields. And just spending time with these kids, I realised soccer in the townships is more than just a game or a sport but a culture that keeps most of these kids alive, providing hope beyond the circumstances they live in. Inspiring them and giving them the passion to dream of one day being great.”
Musa decided that is he can get help covering the cost of boots, he will be able to donate boots to a group of children and ignite hope in their futures.
“I realised most of them had not even owned a new pair of soccer boots, in their whole lifetime. I, therefore, was inspired, with the little that I have, to go on a journey of donating soccer boots, to the players to ignite hope and inspiration.
On my journey, I realised the capacity of the amount of these young kids who needed soccer boots to keep their dreams was really high. Therefore I humbly request your help, with donations to produce and donate 500 pairs within the next 3 months during the next Easter tournaments to identified young kids in the townships and rural areas.”
Musa set up a crowdfund on BackaBuddy to help reach his goal. You can support his efforts via the crowdfund here.