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As a child with a flair for the dramatic arts, Mantombi Makhubele dreamed of becoming an actress. But university simply was not an option. Undeterred, in between working odd jobs, she completed a diploma in television production at the National Electronic Media Institute of South Africa (NEMISA). It was the first step in the right direction…

Mantombi’s journalism journey really began when she was hired as a PA to the editor at The Sunday Times. She then worked her way into a project manager role, eventually working as a Social Columnist after the passing of the legendary society columnist, Gwen Gill.

She tells Go Hustle how this journey led her to write her own book, Let’s Have Some Tea: A Single Mom’s Conversation.

The book epitomises her passion and purpose…

Mantombi is passionate about conversations – specifically those that help single moms heal from past relationship hurt and prepare them to love again.

Her recently published memoir Let’s Have Some Tea: A single Mom’s Conversation explores what it’s like to be a modern-day single mom through the subjects of healing from past relationship trauma and navigating the world of dating and relationships.

Her passion is to create a safe place for single moms to heal and thrive, with the tools to reinvent themselves and create fulfilling relationships. “As a mother of two daughters who are both studying at Wits University, I’ve always had a dream to help single moms in their journey to spiritual and emotional fulfilment through open and frank conversations, support and empowerment,” she says.

Some amazing career highlights…

Mantombi’s accolades include covering the royal visit of Prince Charles and Camilla, writing a front-page story for The Sunday Times after the passing of MaSisulu and taking on the role of Sunday Times 2010 Soccer World Cup project manager. She also broke barriers and led the way for transformation as the first black travel editor in the country – with the opportunity to travel the world.

READ MORE: How To Be A (Successful) Serial Entrepreneur

On facing challenges head-on…

With the dearth of media houses in South Africa, and up against tough competition, it took Mantombi a while to break into the industry. “I kept on knocking on doors, speaking to HR managers, introducing myself… I was willing to do anything just to get my foot in the door,” she says.

Most media houses do have internships. These days, graduates can start their own blogs and use social media to speak about subjects they’re passionate about. “To break into [politics and business reporting] can be a challenge, because those industries are mainly led by men. To practice at the highest level, you need to be moving in those circles with the men, and sometimes women have to balance the challenges of motherhood,” explains Mantombi.

Lessons learnt throughout the journey…

1/ “Focus on the subjects you’re passionate about, build your career around that and you will be able to create work for yourself.”

2/ “Start from where you are with the knowledge you have, and grow from there. You always have something to offer.”

A book every woman should read…

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho and Think And Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill.

What’s next?

Mantombi is currently studying towards a Christian Ministry qualification at the Johannesburg Bible College.

Connect with Mantombi

Facebook: Mantombi Makhubele

Instagram: @mantombi.makhubele.mokoena

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