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- Wits Alumni Relations

A setback served as a catalyst for Marcia Monareng to start her own business. Since then, she has received numerous accolades on her entrepreneurial path.

Wits alumna Marcia Monareng (BA 2017) majored in media studies and psychology at Wits and after a few years working as a digital content creator and social media manager she was retrenched during the COVID-19 pandemic, forcing her to re-evaluate the future.Marcia Monareng started her own business Millennial Mindset Media in 2021.

Monareng has lived in Leachville, near Brakpan, since she was a pre-teen. As a young person who loved reading, she often struggled because of the limited resources. The closest library is 3,5km away. There is no clinic or police station. Taxis are only available early morning and evening.


She started Millennial Mindset Media in 2021, which grew from her bedroom, to a single container on communal land in Leachville, and now has a bigger office in the same township. It is a 100% Black-owned and female-led business that offers digital marketing services with personalised solutions and close client collaboration. Its business model also provides young people with the opportunity to work as freelancers, gaining valuable work experience and digital skills from basic digital literacy to more advanced programming skills.

Monareng received the 2024 Founder of the Year at the FOYA Awards in the Under 30 category. The awards acknowledge young African entrepreneurs, creating sustainable jobs through their businesses. Established in Kenya in 2016, the FOYA Awards span across 12 countries on the continent, including Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, Ghana, Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Malawi, Botswana, Mozambique, Zambia, and South Africa.

“This award solidifies my position as an entrepreneur, a social activist and a community leader. It is a representation for young people that it is possible, anything you dream, you can achieve,” she says.

It is not Monareng’s first accolade – in 2023 she was the recipient of FOYA’s Mediapreneur of the Year and Social Founder of the Year, held in Kenya. Industry insiders define “mediapreneurs” as personal brands, coaches, speakers and information marketers in the digital space. She also received the 2023 Santam Readers’ Choice Award, as well as securing a mentorship programme and a cash prize, for the work her business has generated.

“We work with brands that are very impactful,” says Monareng, listing some clients. “There is SMAB Training Academy, that helps young women get into the aviation industry; we have Rinato Clinic, that is based in Burgersfort and is one of the only clinics within a 70km radius. We have Lumkani, that offers fire alarms for people who live in informal settlements, which is crucial in South Africa.”

Foundation and partnerships

What impressed the judges most, was the way Monareng has managed to adjust to the needs not only of her business, but also the community around her. It is an outlook she says, that stems from her formative years, watching her grandmother serve her own community in KwaThemba, a township south-west of Springs. “My grandmother believes in serving the community wholeheartedly."Team effort: Amogelang Morudu, Marcia Monareng and Wandile Marasela from Millennial Mindset Media.

As a result she’s started Millennial Mindset Foundation, which has allowed her to partner with different organisations, to meet the needs of the community around her. “Each step has been a lesson in growth, resilience, and strategic evolution. Our venture into the dynamic world of digital marketing has been continuously adapted and  talent developed,” says Monareng.

“Collaboration emerged as another key driver of our growth journey. I recognised the power of strategic partnerships. We’ve partnered with Nedbank to provide financial skills in the townships. There’s a lot of money in the township economy, but it’s not recorded and few people have financial know-how.”

In April 2024, Media24, featured Monareng’s feeding scheme, which initially was solely run from her own pocket but, as time passed, she entered a partnership with the local Pick n Pay. Through this partnership, the store distributes groceries to around 60 community members weekly. A library was also started with Monareng's books and donations from the community. Since then, school resources, such as textbooks, have become available.

She plans to establish an academy in 2024 offering accredited courses to empower young people with the necessary skills to become self-sufficient and contribute to their communities.

She offers advice to young people who have a dream: “Sometimes it’s ok to be delusional. People may not always understand your vision because it’s your vision…believe in yourself and just start. When we venture into something new, we overthink and doubt ourselves. Just start, you will learn as you go.”