MUNIDE ZULU, Lusaka
HIS childhood passion and love to explore information technology (IT) has made Fidelis Chulu Jr travel the world after being nominated to represent the country at the Global Student Entrepreneurship awards (GSEA) in the United States.
Born from Fidelis Chulu, a farmer and Anne Chishimba, a businesswoman, Fidelis, 24, emerged winner after beating 10 other contestants in the local contest where young business innovators showcased their various innovations.
He presented his business innovation and future plan at the contest that was held at Lusakaâ€™s COMESA headquarters before going to Washington DC.
The local awards were sponsored by proprietor of Eliff Bussiness Solutions, Edwin Zulu who is also coordinator for the GSEA based in the USA.
As a reward for his passion and hard work, Fidelis now boasts of being one of Zambiaâ€™s upcoming entrepreneurs and IT innovators.
He founded Gizmo Systems in 2014 – an IT solutions company that develops websites, softwares and mobile apps, among others.
Despite being multi-talented, Fidelis chose to venture into IT innovations with a goal of being his own boss and creating employment for other young people.
â€œIT stood out among the many other talents I possess such as music, dancing and martial arts,â€ he says.
His dream is to make a difference, not only in Zambiaâ€™s economy, but the world as whole through his innovations.
Fidelisâ€™s brainwave became a reality when he created an online platform called the Noticeboard last year which allows users to advertise and access information on careers and businesses.
It comprises a job portal, business directory and allows for user interaction. Users can also add their curriculum vitaes (CVs) to their websites and once they do that, jobs are employers contact job-seekers in line with their skills.
Companies are also eligible to use the noticeboard in search of qualified employees suitable for their job requirements.
Fidelis already boasts of more than 300 individuals and over 20 businesses using his noticeboard.
As a young entrepreneur, Fidelis hopes to inspire fellow youths into entrepreneurship. He believes youths can make a difference in life once they understand how to run businesses.
On May 27 this year he is expected to share his success story at the first ever students conference to be held at Zambia Centre for Accountancy Studies (ZCAS) before moving to other institutions such as UINILUS and Cavendish University among others.
Fidelis, who described his experience in Washington as awesome, also shared how most developing countries were thriving through positive contributions made by young entrepreneurs.
â€œIt was interesting to note how countries take entrepreneurship as a cornerstone of their economic growth. They are really doing great and this should be emulated here,â€ he states.
Fidelis thinks by doing so, the country will reduce the unemployment levels among youths.
He, however, advised young people to value their ideas especially if they can positively contribute towards the countryâ€™s economic growth.
Fidelis says young people should also learn to use whatever little resources they have to their advantage other than waiting for government to create jobs for them.
He also advised youths to consider investing in their country. You do not need to go outside the country to succeed in life. The grass is green here. You just have to water it,â€ he stated.
Fidelis, however, lamented that efforts to expand his services are being hampered by lack of finances
Adding that thereâ€™s need for other stakeholders to consider partnering with the firm to save a good cause.
Fidelis started school in 1996 and did his secondary school at Rosebank in Chilanga. He went to ZCAS after completing his secondary education where he studied National Computing Centre for three years. He also did his advanced diploma in the same course.
He is the fourth born in a family of six and his future plan is to expand his business countrywide so that more youths are employed.
MUNIDE ZULU, Lusaka