After finding himself without a job, engineer Llewelyn Pillay refused to be a victim of circumstance. Marchelle Abrahams chats to him about being selected for the Young Entrepreneurs Global Exposure Program

“A DREAM doesn’t become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination and hard work,” Colin Powell once said.

Engineering graduate Llewelyn Pillay, 28, knows all about dreaming and then watching those aspirations fall apart before once’s eyes.

After working in the engineering sector for a number of years and after getting retrenched, KZN-born Pillay refused to become a victim of circumstance.

Instead he fought hard to rediscover his dream of starting his own business, and through sheer determination and his refusal to be part of SA’s unemployment narrative, he finally put down roots.

“I’ve faced many obstacles and have had countless doors shut in my face, but I still persevered,” says the young entrepreneur.

“I literally went knocking on the doors of construction companies for work, until I finally landed a contract.”

But the nightmare was far from over. Big clients refusing to pay had led to cash-flow problems, until he eventually turned to his family for help.

Finding his feet again, he made an oath to give back to

his community by creating job opportunities for young South Africans.

Years later, and Pillay has delivered on his promise. Now the proud owner of civil engineering and construction firm, Ubunye Africa Construction, his focus is solely on youth development.

And not one to take things for granted, he’s even now taken over his mother’s fashion business, creating opportunities for aspiring designers.

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